Knowledge Search

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Knowledge Search (Korean:지식검색) service is an information-sharing tool first launched in 2002 for Naver users. The tool allows users to ask just about any question, such as how to cook "ramen" or how to subscribe to international magazines via the Internet, and get answers from other users. In this way, Knowledge Search was an early example of harnessing user-generated content to expand the amount of information available in the web, particularly in the Korean language. Bradley Horowitz, Vice President of Product Strategy at Yahoo!, has cited the South Korean experience with knowledge search as the inspiration for Yahoo! Answers, which was launched three years after Naver introduced the original service. As of January 2008 the Knowledge Search database included more than 80 million pages of user-generated information.

Knowledge Search has four sub-categories:

  • Knowledge Q&A allows for general questions about anything
  • Local Q&A allows people to ask for local information such as good restaurants, cheap stores, and real estate.
  • Agony Q&A is for people seeking advice on relationships, love, career, and sex (with anonymous posting enabled.) While Knowledge Q&A and Local Q&A provide factual answers, Agony Q&A usually returns more opinionated responses.
  • Open Dictionary is a database of informative articles generated by users. Users can create an article alone, or enable other users to collaborate to create a thread of articles on the same subject. In addition, the user may add his or her own answers from Knowledge Q&A to Open Dictionary.

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