Megalia

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메갈리아
Megalia
Logo of South Korean feminist website Megalia.png
Type of site
Textboard
Websitewww.megalian.com[dead link]
Alexa rankDecrease 2,221,510 (June 2018)[1]
CommercialYes
RegistrationOptional
LaunchedAugust 6, 2015
Current statusShut Down (2017)

Megalia (Korean: 메갈리아) was a radical feminist online community based in South Korea.

Overview[edit]

In the spring of 2015, South Korean Internet forum DC Inside started "MERS Gallery" as a forum for sharing information on the Middle East respiratory syndrome outbreak.

When a false rumor spread that two women who may have contracted the MERS disease refused quarantine to go on a shopping trip to Hong Kong, it prompted bashing in this forum. These supposed health code violators were derided using the term "Kimchi woman" (김치; gimchi-nyeo), a stereotype for the female gender who only has shopping on her mind.[2]

As this situation continued, an influx of feminist users started using offensive terms, coining "Kimchi man" (김치; gimchi-nam) a counterpart male-bashing term which mocks Korean males in general. DC Inside intervened by instituting a language policy, forbidding use of "Kimchi man". The feminist users regarded the measure as discriminatory,[a] and finding these rules too constraining for posting their rhetoric, moved to other forums at DC Inside, and eventually, launched their own website, "Megalia". The name "Megalia" is a portmanteau of "MERS Gallery" and "Egalia's Daughters", a feminist novel by Gerd Brantenberg.[4][3]

Culture[edit]

In Megalia, there are several boards, including the "best" board, "new posts" board, "Menyeom (meaning suitable for Megalia) board", "news" board, "data" board, "lecture" board, "capture" board, "humor" board, and "free" board.[5]

When it was founded Megalia claimed that it was a feminist website and that its goal was to "promote women's rights and remove misogyny widespread in the Korean society."

Megalia began a movement to halt the porn-sharing site SoraNet (소라넷)'s practice which permitted uploads of privacy-violating secretly photographed video content, and has moved on to petition the shutdown of the site itself, which was notorious for various types of illicit pornographic content.[6] Eventually, SoraNet was shutdown.[7][8]

Controversies[edit]

Megalia is widely perceived as an extremist, feminist community, which consciously mirrors the misogynistic language deployed in male-dominated forums like Ilbe.[9] To critics, Megalians’ mirroring tactic is hateful and misandrist; to supporters, they are reclaiming a male-centered language that threatens and diminishes women.[10]

Many, including some feminists, say Megalia’s tactics have opened the group up to accusations of misandry, and exacerbate the gender wars.[11] Although Megalia users claim that their misandric posts are a countermeasure against particular misogynists, most of the target are all Korean men. Megalia users make extreme posts which exceeds that of the websites that show a misogynist nature such as Ilbe. This raises a question whether they are simply expressing misandry rather than a countermeasure against misogyny. They show a high level of homophobia and treat transgender individuals differently. That includes outing gay men who are married to women.[12][13][14][15]

On October 17, 2015, one user, who was a kindergarten teacher, uploaded a salacious post declaring their desire to have sex with a Jonnini 좆린이, which is slang for a very young male child. This caused an uproar, especially after her identity was outed, even though she had posted anonymously. The poster (referred to in the media as "Ms. A") later addressed this, and while admitting the gravity of her message which caused serious concerns, explained that she was merely trying to bring awareness to the fact that male-dominated boards such as Ilbe routinely discuss sexual desires for underage girls (referred to as lolini 로린이 ("Lolita girl").[b][16]

Users of Megalia have[citation needed] posted gory images of sliced penises, and mocked war heroes who died in the Korean War.[17] Megalia promotes abortion of male fetuses.[18] One of Megalia's activities is the manipulation of public opinion. Megalia users share news articles’ URLs and manipulate comment sections led by their administrative team with a suggested guideline.[19] Since December 2015, administrators and financial backers of the website have continuously received criticism on their lack of transparency, but no official statement has been released.[20]

On October 2018, following the Isu Station assault case, more than 129,500 Koreans signed an online petition asking for the presidential office to take measure against the extremist feminist communities, including Womad and Megalia.[21]

Derived websites[edit]

  • Womad (Korean: Korean: 워마드) is a website derived from Megalia on January 22, 2016. It is a splinter group that formed when Megalia issued a ban on use of certain explicit slurs against gay men.[22][23]
  • Megalia 4 is a Facebook page that derived from Megalia in 2016.
  • Ladism (Korean: 레디즘) is a website that derived from Megalia in 2016.[22]

See also[edit]

Explanatory notes[edit]

  1. ^ One news source describes "Compared to DC Inside's track record thus far of never handing out any sanctions whatsoever against seriously misogynic statements, this [measure] was hard to comprehend (이해하기 어려운)".[3]
  2. ^ In news coverage, the offensive word may be replaced with eolini 어린이, the ordinary word for a child, or the first hangul letter of Jonnini has been blotted out to read "O린이". The Megalian's uncensored posting is the following: "아 좆린이 먹고 싶다" [Oh I want to have a Jonnini to eat]. Megalia. 2015-10-17. Archived from the original on 2015-12-27.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "megalian Site Info". Alexa Internet. Retrieved June 29, 2016.
  2. ^ Steger, Isabella. "An epic battle between feminism and deep-seated misogyny is under way in South Korea". Quartz. Retrieved 2017-05-24.
  3. ^ a b Kim Jae-hui (김재희) (2015-06-23). "일베도 서럽게 만든, '메갈리아의 딸들'" [Even Ilbe was made to feel contrition by the 'Megalia sisterhood']. OhmyNews. Archived from the original on 2018. Retrieved 2017-01-27. (in Korean)
  4. ^ Lee, Yeji (2016-09-01). "Megalia: South Korea's Radical Feminism Community". 10 Magazine. Retrieved 2017-01-27.
  5. ^ "게시판 소개 및 이용자 준수사항 [Guide to the boards and user rules]" - Megalia (in Korean)
  6. ^ Kim, Jae-hui (June 26, 2015). "일베도 서럽게 만든, '메갈리아의 딸들'" [Even Ilbe was made to feel contrition by the 'Megalia sisterhood']. OhmyNews (in Korean).
  7. ^ Cho Eun-ae, Sohn Guk-hee, Esther Chung (April 8, 2016). "Korea's biggest porn site gets shut down". JoongAng Daily.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  8. ^ "South Korea revenge porn: Sora owner arrested". BBC. June 26, 2018.
  9. ^ Gwak, Huiyang (2013-05-22). "What Kind of Website Is Ilbe?". The Kyunghyang Shinmun. Retrieved 2018-12-25.
  10. ^ Kang, Haeryun (2017-11-27). "Latest Korean feminism-zucchinis". Korea Expose.
  11. ^ Steger, Isabella (11 January 2016). "An Epic Battle Between Feminism And Deep-Seated Misogyny Is Under Way In South Korea". Huffington Post.
  12. ^ H, Jay (2016-01-05). "The Rise of Radical Korean Feminist Community, Megalia". Korea Bang.
  13. ^ "메갈리아" [Megalia]. Libre Wiki (in Korean). 2015.
  14. ^ H, Jay (2016-01-05). "The Rise of Radical Korean Feminist Community, Megalia". Korea Bang.
  15. ^ Steger, Isabella (11 January 2016). "An Epic Battle Between Feminism And Deep-Seated Misogyny Is Under Way In South Korea". Huffington Post.
  16. ^ Ku Ja-yun (구자윤) (2015-12-28). "메갈리안 유치원 교사 "어린이와 하고 싶다" 논란" [The Megalian kindergarten teacher's 'I want to do it with a child' controversy]. The Financial News (파이낸셜 뉴스). (Naver News) (in Korean)
  17. ^ Park Hye-song (박혜성) (2016-01-15). "여성 인권' 외치던 '메갈리아'의 정체는?…"소라넷보다 더한 막장 사이트" [Real identity of Megalia who cries for women's rights? Site more extreme than SoraNet]. Archived from the original on 2016-01-15. (in Korean)
  18. ^ Lee, Yeji (2017-05-17). "Megalia: South Korea's Radical Feminist Community". Medium.
  19. ^ H, Jay (2016-01-05). "The Rise of Radical Korean Feminist Community, Megalia". Korea Bang.
  20. ^ Singh, Emily (2016-07-29). "Megalia: South Korean Feminism Marshals the Power of the Internet". Korea Expose.
  21. ^ Lee, Claire (18 November 2018). "'Isu station' assault case triggers online gender war in South Korea". Korea Herald.
  22. ^ a b Kim Seo-yeong (김서영) (2016-07-08). "'메갈리아' 성향 따라 워마드·레디즘 등으로 분화" [Megalia splits off Womad and Ladism that are of a different flavor]. Kyunghyang Shinmun. Archived from the original on 2016-07-24. (in Korean)
  23. ^ Shinyun Dong-uk (신윤동욱) (2016-01-13). "어떤 입으로 말하고, 누구의 귀로 들을까?" [Whose mouths, whose ears?]. The Hankyoreh. Archived from the original on 2016-10-07. Retrieved 2017-01-27. (in Korean)

External links[edit]