Embark on a New Journey in 2023

I’m happy to let you know that I have been appointed as 2023 K-influencer and Korea.net Honorary Reporter. For those who may not be familiar with these programs, let me do a brief introduction in this blog post.

Global Korean Culture Ambassadors

The Korean Culture and Information Service (KOCIS) under the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism runs two programs, the K-influencer Academy and the Korea.net Honorary Reporter, aiming to promote Korea worldwide. Global Korean Culture Ambassadors are chosen annually from different countries, with over 1,900 K-influencers and over 4,500 Honorary Reporters currently recruited. So, it’s really a big network of Korean culture lovers. As an ambassador, my role is to promote Korean culture in my own community and beyond.

K-influencer Academy

The K-influencer Academy is a YouTube training program for Korea lovers aimed at supporting Korea lovers to be better YouTube creators for Korean culture-related content. For 2023, the program runs from May to October and there are educational videos, missions, rewards, and workshops. The benefits of the program for outstanding activities include a trip to Korea for the most outstanding content creator, opportunities to be on TV and YouTube content, participation in online and offline festivals, YouTube channel consulting and promotional marketing, access to filming equipment and studio, and funding for content production.

Korea.net Honorary Reporters

For Honorary Reporters, the appointment is for one year from May, and reporters create content related to Korea in the form of articles, photos, videos, or illustrations. The Honorary Reporters can take part in online and offline events hosted by KOCIS and related organizations, and attend development programs provided by KOCIS. Small honorariums or gifts will also be provided to those who produce superior work.

I would recommend readers subscribing to the YouTube channels of K-influencer Academy and Korea.net, where they can get more information on the programs and other interesting and helpful content related to Korean culture. The links to the YouTube channels are set out below:

K-influencer Academy YouTube Channel

Korea.net YouTube Channel

2023 Global Korean Culture Ambassadors Induction Ceremony

The 2023 Global Korean Culture Ambassadors Induction Ceremony has already been held on May 19th in Seoul, and this year’s slogan is “Beyond the K”. I attended the ceremony via the live broadcast on Korea.net’s YouTube channel. It’s great to virtually meet the other ambassadors and play the quiz game via live chat with other participants. You can watch the recorded live broadcast in the link below:

2023 Global Korean Culture Ambassadors Induction Ceremony

My YouTube Channel : Kalbi – Korean Culture Village

I will upload videos related to my activities as K-influencer and Honorary Reporter to my newly established YouTube channel . There will also be other videos relating to Korean culture. So, if you’re interested in following my journey as K-influencer and Honorary Reporter and/or interesting things about Korean culture, please subscribe to my YouTube channel with the link below:

Kalbi – Korean Culture Village YouTube Channel

I really look forward to the exciting new journey as K-influencer and Honorary Reporter ahead. 😃

Koreans to get younger from June 2023

In my blog post entitled “Want to get older immediately? Use the Korean age!“, I have explained the calculation of Korean age, which is different from the international system and results in being one or two years older than that calculated by international system. This has caused confusion as the Korean system is used in daily social matters and the international system is adopted for certain legal and administrative matters (e.g., legal age for alcohol drinking). The South Korean Government has decided to standardize the usage of age calculation system and adopt the international age for all matters starting from June 2023.

One interesting thing is that in June 2023, all Koreans will get younger by one or two years as they start to adopt the international age for daily social life matters for which Korean age is used before that time. For example, if you meet a baby boy born on 31 December 2022 during a social gathering on 2 January 2023, his parents would say the baby is two years old (as usually Korean age is used in social matters) although this baby is just about 1 month old by international age. If you meet that baby again during a social gathering in July 2023, his parents would say the baby is about 6 months old (as international age is adopted for all matters) – i.e., the baby gets about 2 years younger! This would be good news for people who worry about getting old.


Justin McCurry, “All South Koreans to become younger as traditional age system scrapped“, The Guardian, 2022-12-09

Lee Hyo-jin, “Korea to scrap local age counting system from next year“, The Korea Times, 2022-12-08

Site Upcycling in South Korea


One of the recent trends in eco-friendly efforts is upcycling, i.e., creative transformation of waste or unwanted materials into new products of higher value.  In my blog post dated 12 January 2020 I have introduced the Seoul Upcycling Plaza which showcases upcycling drives in daily lives like clothing, food and housing.  The South Korean Government has in fact put in a lot of efforts in rejunvenating abandoned/unused sites into theme parks or arts/cultural complexes providing much better value to the community. In this blog post, let’s talk about some of such upcycled sites. Continue reading

Let’s “Go-Green” Together in Korea


In my recent trip to Seoul in December 2019, I found the above advertisement in the subway train – it is about saying “No’ to paper receipts in the shops and this is supported by big names like Lotte, Shinsegae, Emart and Home Plus.  In fact, South Korea has been implementing other eco-friendly policies, for example, waste sorting for both household and commercial entities. Recently, the South Korean Government has tightened up the policies against the use of plastic products and single-use products.  In this blog post, we will discuss some of the policies which may impact on the places where tourists usually visit. Continue reading

Two Korean Festivals to Enjoy at Night in November!

**Last updated on: 15 October 2020**

If you are going to Korea in November, there are two annual festivals which you could enjoy at night, one in Busan and another in Seoul.  However, due to Covid-19, depending on the circumstances, these festivals may be postponed or cancelled in 2020. You may refer to the respective websites mentioned below for the updated information.  For the purpose of this blog post, I would use the information based on the festivals held in 2019. Continue reading

Korean Embroidery – Jasu

Image Source

In my last blog post dated 24 August 2019, I have talked about one of Korean traditional crafts, najeonchilgi (mother-of-pearl craft works), in this blog post, let’s talk about another Korean traditional craft, embroidery, or in Korean, jasu (자수). You could also often see products decorated by jasu in shops selling traditional Korean handicrafts. Continue reading

Najeonchilgi – Mother-of-Pearl Craftwork


Mother-of Pearl Decorated Products

When you walk around some shops selling Korean traditional craft products in South Korea, you may notice some products with radiant inlay.  They are mother-of-pearl craft works called najeonchilgi (나전칠기), which has more than 1,000 years of history in Korea.  Let’s discuss about this Korean traditional craft in this blog post. Continue reading