You know, I think Korea Times gets a bad rap here and in other blogs. Sure there’s a lot of crap, but it’s a bit like the local Goodwill. You have to really dig through a lot of throw aways, but occasionally you find some gems like articles by Michael Breen or Andrei Lankov that Korea Times has bothered to publish and make known.
In 1999, four KAIST graduates launched Cyworld; the same year that Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg was a middle-school student preparing to enroll at Harvard University.
Much of… [Cyworld’s] failure is strategic, cultural, linguistic and educational.
Cyworld’s global marketing was a complete failure as it segmented each market for the United States, Japan, Germany, China, and Vietnam. For Facebook, the world is a single marketplace ― something the Korean firm is belatedly adopting in its global standard platform.
Cyworld looks like a Korean, while Facebook seems like an American. Facebook has a Western way of outward-oriented, aggressive and open thinking, but Cyworld is inward-looking, and family- and group-oriented.
There is no comparison between Cyworld and Facebook. One is worth over $50 billion and the other is worth just a tiny fraction of that. However, the comparison is made to illustrate what Korea, Inc. lacks in assets of a more creative and intangible nature.