Skip to content
Subscriber Only

OhmyNews' Oh My Biz Problem

The Korean site for citizen reporting hasn't had much success so far with its moves into other marketsand it's in the red at home

Remember all the hoopla about the disruptive impact to mainstream media from "citizen" journalism? One of the pioneers in the field is Seoul-based Web site OhmyNews. It made a huge splash in 2002, when its unique brand of participatory journalism by amateur writers played a critical role in the South Korea presidential race.

Few doubt that OhmyNews, which galvanized younger voters, contributed to the election of President Roh Moo Hyun, who was portrayed by Korea's mainstream newspapers as a dangerous leftist with little chance of victory. OhmyNews readers, prompted by citizen journalists' reports that Roh was trailing in the vote, sent out a blitz of text messages urging friends to vote for Roh, and he prevailed by a narrow margin."Ordinary citizens found a medium to serve their interest and express themselves," says OhmyNews Chief Executive Officer Oh Yeon Ho.