Type of site
WOMAD (Korean: 워마드) is a radical feminist online community based in South Korea. It has been criticized for extreme anti-male sentiment, including threats of and videos of sexual and physical assault. It split from Megalia, another feminist online community based in South Korea, after Megalia created rules against anti-gay slurs.
WOMAD split from Megalia on January 22, 2016. It formed due to Megalia issuing a ban on the use of certain explicit slurs against gay men. This change in policy led to the migration of members that do not support transgender ideology, and have a female-centric ideology. WOMAD officially states that they are not women's rights movement activists.
WOMAD has caused controversy due to extreme online trolling such as postings that boast animal abuse and show extreme hatred towards transgender people; for this reason, WOMAD has been called "Korean-style TERFs" It was embroiled in a number of accusations for mocking Korean War veterans and labor rights activists. A number of posts mocking the deceased actor Kim Joo-hyuk caused further controversy. Following such incidents, critics lambasted WOMAD as a "hateful website that is aggravating conflict and division of society" among South Koreans.
Its tough stance is represented in several places on the web site. It uses red Hakenkreuz symbol in 'thumbs-up' button, with '워념글 추천' written below, meaning 'suggest this as an insightful article' in Korean. Its favicon is a representation of a vulva, with red dot at the center of it representing both period blood and fire. It claims to mirror misogyny in Korean society, particularly Ilbe.
Claims of murders targeting men
In 2016, multiple posts appeared on the site, claiming that they have killed men with titles such as "I fed men coffee mixed with car antifreeze liquid", "I killed a man by pushing him into a reservoir" and "I aborted a male baby." The Ulsan Metropolitan Police Agency and the Gwangju Metropolitan Police Agency started an investigation after receiving police reports on 28 July 2016. Several shutdown requests have been made against the community, but Daum Kakao dismissed the requests stating that "some posts have been hidden, but there is insufficient illegal activity within the community to shut it down".
Child-abuse incident in Australia
On November 19, 2017, an anonymous member wrote a post on the WOMAD forum claiming that she had raped an Australian boy. WOMAD members showed support for the writer, leaving comments saying that they would pay to watch the videos of the sexual assault. News of the post quickly spread online and a petition was started on Cheong Wa Dae’s bulletin board requesting that the person responsible be caught. On November 20, 2017, a 27-year-old Korean woman identified as "Areum Lee" was arrested by the Australian Federal Police in Darwin, Northern Territory in relation to the incident. The suspect is charged with producing child abuse materials. AFP announced that she will remain in custody until a court hearing scheduled for mid-January 2018. According to interviews with the victim's parents, it is suspected that her identification and credentials are fake and that she could have broken immigration and labor laws. WOMAD members actively defended her, claimed that Areum Lee was innocent and conducted an online fundraiser for her lawyer appointment. In addition, they sent a petition to the Australian police to "release Areum Lee" and protested the victim's parents. Many were shocked by this incident.
Desecration of Catholic sacramental bread
On July 10, 2018 an anonymous member wrote a post on the WOMAD forum claiming that she has desecrated the host with the picture of evidence. The post was curse-ridden (calling Jesus a rapist) and contained a picture of the burnt host. According to the post, the poster claimed that the very first human being was a female. She advocated based on this that all denominations that claim Adam to be the first human being should be destroyed. This was not popular among Christians, though largely supported on the website.
- 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 (in Korean). Archived from the original on 2016-07-24.
- Shinyun Dong-uk (신윤동욱) (2016-01-13). 어떤 입으로 말하고, 누구의 귀로 들을까? [Whose mouths, whose ears?]. The Hankyoreh (in Korean). Archived from the original on 2016-10-07. Retrieved 2017-01-27.
- Emily Singh (July 29, 2016). "Megalia: South Korean Feminism Marshals the Power of the Internet". Korea Expose.
- Raphael Rashid (November 23, 2017). "Ilbe vs. Womad: Alleged Child Abuse Reignites S. Korea's Gender War".
- Hwang in-seong (황인성) (2017-07-21). "목 졸린 채 눈물 흘리는 고양이?" 워마드 동물 학대 논란 [Crying and strangled cats, WOMAD animal abuse social controversy]. WIKI tree (in Korean).
- 최형진 (Choi Hyung-jin) (2017-11-21). ‘아동 성폭행 논란’ 워마드, 그 시작은 “성 소수자 혐오” ['Child sexual abuse controversy' WOMAD, the beginning of the website is "sexual minority hatred"]. Asia Economy (in Korean).
- "한국형 TERF인 '워마디즘' 비평" [Korean-style TERF "Womadism" criticism]. Huffpost Korea (in Korean). 2017-11-01.
- Lim ye-in(임예인) (2017-12-01). "[2030 세상보기] 워마드와 미러링의 그림자" [[2030 World View]] WOMAD and shadows of 'mirrroing']. Hankook Ilbo (in Korean).
- Kang so-yeong (강소영) (2016-06-24). ‘남혐’ 커뮤니티 워마드, 6.25 참전용사 조롱 논란 “대한민국 최대 고기파티” [Misandry Community WOMAD, "Korea's largest meat body party" Korean war veteran ridicule]. CNB NEWS (in Korean).
- Lim Jeong-yeo (Nov 21, 2017). "Female suspect faces probe over Australian child sexual assault allegation". The Korea Herald.
- Hwang in-seong (황인성) (2017-12-02). '그것이알고싶다' 워마드 논란, 누리꾼 "김주혁 모욕 논란과 동물학대·호주에서 일어난 아동성추행 실상을 알려달라" ['I want to know it' WOMAD, Kim Joo-hyuk disdain and animal abuse and Australian child molestation controversy]. KNS NEWS (in Korean).
- 이, 재길 (28 July 2016). ""남성들에 부동액 타먹이자"…남성혐오 사이트 충격"". CBS 노컷뉴스. Retrieved 2 Feb 2018.
- "Korean woman who abused child could face new charges in Australia". asia one. Nov 25, 2017.
- Heewon Kim (November 20, 2017). "Korean Radical Feminist Allegedly Committed Child Sexual Assault in Australia". Korea Daily.
- "Korean Woman Shares How She Sexually Assaulted Australian Boy, Gets arrested immediately". Koreaboo. November 23, 2017.
- Lim Jeong-yeo (Nov 20, 2017). "Netizen claims to have sexually assaulted Australian child". The Korea Herald.
- "Woman arrested over Australian child sexual assault allegation". asia one. Nov 22, 2017.
- "27-year-old Korean national charged producing child exploitation material". MIRAGE NEWS. November 21, 2017.
- "27-year-old Korean national charged producing child exploitation material". AFP. November 21, 2017.
- Lim Jeong-yeo (Nov 22, 2017). "[Newsmaker] Australian police detain Korean woman indicted on producing child abuse material". The Korea Herald.
- Lim Jeong-yeo (Nov 24, 2017). "'Womad' woman could face new charges in Australia". The Korea Herald.
- Kim Jae-Myung (김재명) (2017-11-25). [인터넷 이슈 브리핑] ‘괴물 흉내인가 괴물인가’ … 호주 워마드 사건 파장 [[Internet issue briefing] 'Monster imitation or real monster'... WOMAD incident in Australia]. GeumGang ilbo (in Korean).
- Kim Hye-Ran (김혜란) (2017-11-21). 워마드 ‘호주 남아 성폭행’ 의혹 27세 女 체포…네티즌 수사대 지목 그녀? [WOMAD 'Raping Australian boy' a 27 year old woman has arrested, Is she the one that netizens point to?]. Dong A (in Korean).
- Park Hyun-Jun (박현준) (2017-11-21). '논란' 워마드 '호주 남아 성폭행녀', 일부 네티즌 신상공개 파문 [WOMAD Australian child rape controversy, netizens reveal the identity of criminal.]. CNB NEWS (in Korean).
- WOMAD (in Korean)