/Photograph by Yu Na-Kyung
Recently, the new occupation of “content creator” has emerged. According to the Chosun Newspress, in 2016, compared to 2015, people spending their time watching YouTube increased by 65 percent. Likewise, YouTube fever has been sweeping across the country. As an increasing amount of personally created content has been uploaded, The Dongguk Post interviewed a YouTuber, Jang Seo-hyeon, a Donggukian, who talks about her life through YouTube. The number of her YouTube followers is 227 thousand and the total view count is 56 million.
Q. Can you introduce yourself?
A. Hello. My name is Jang Seo-hyeon and I am twenty-four years old. I entered Dongguk University in 2013, majoring in painting. I am currently taking a time off from university due to personal issues. In the YouTube world, I am also known as “Iluliy.”
Q. How did you name yourself as “Iluliy?”
A. Well, usually a lot of YouTubers do not really use their real name. So I was wondering what I should choose for mine. While thinking of one, I recalled my middle school times. When I was a middle school student, a trainee teacher’s name was “Iluliy.” [In Korean “Iluliy” means ‘achieve whatever you want.’] She said her parents named her “Iluliy,” hoping that she can achieve whatever she wants to pursue. I am also doing what I pursue right now, so I thought it would be significant to name myself like her. What is more interesting is that her name is made by pure Korean words. I thought both of the meaning and the fact that the name is made with pure Korean words are very worthwhile.
Q. Were you originally interested in making contents? How did you start your job as a YouTuber?
A. I was originally not interested in making videos. I used to watch a lot of YouTube videos of famous BJs such as “Diva Jessica,” and “Great Library.” I knew that all of them were doing personal broadcasting at Afreeca TV, which is a Korean social network service media platform, all by themselves. Later on, I naturally got curiosity about making videos. This opportunity drove me to think, “While others are making their own, why cannot I?” So I started my own broadcasting at another platform, and in 2015, moved to YouTube.
Q. Can you talk about your contents in detail?
A. I first started off with making videos about children’s toys but then as a student, I encountered financial difficulties with buying all the brand new, fancy toys. Some of them even cost ed more than a hundred thousand won. It was hard to bear the entire economic burden alone. So, I decided to change the contents to my personal lifestyle. As I changed the focus to my interests, I started to show my pet to the others, introduce decent restaurants, or pour out my recent concerns. This is how my contents became personalized.
Q. As a student, were there any difficulties while working as a YouTuber?
A. Well as a newbie, I did not know what to do. I had to do all the video editing, too. So I asked for help from my acquaintance, who is working as a producer. Now I can do it alone. Also, since YouTube is a much globalized platform, there are a lot of Japanese viewers. I have heard that there is a craze for Korean foods in Japan. So thanks to some Japanese viewers who can speak fluent Korean, I was able to have Japanese subtitles on my videos. Furthermore, whenever I had some malicious comments about me, I was emotionally hurt. Logical to ear criticisms were even worse. I used to take these subjectively, but now, as the one who does personal broadcasting, I accept those comments, and try to improve myself. The viewers took the situation positively and harsh commentaries were resolved. I personally think that I became more mature than before.
Q. How did others react when you started your own broadcasting?
A. When I first started my personal broadcasting at Afreeca TV, my parents, especially my mom desperately opposed to it. She just did not like me doing such things. I guess she was worried about me suffering from cyber bullying. However, now as time passed by quite a lot, she is not really against it. Instead, she cheers me up these days.
Q. How do you want to be remembered to the viewers?
A. I have not really thought about this issue deeply, but I want to be someone who communicates a lot with the viewers. These days, for a large number of views, some people upload provocative videos. However, I want to be remembered as someone who makes contents that are useful and help people recharge by watching my videos.
Q. Can you give some advice for those who consider or worry about taking time off?
A. It is really hard to have a stance on this issue, since I am still considering about it. I would say that if you think you are wasting your precious time at school, then maybe it would be better to contemplate before taking an action. However, since we all tried our best to go to universities, it will be better to graduate from the university. I wish Donggukians to make choices without regrets.
Kim Ji-min email@example.com
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