Humans of New York-inspired blogs have sprung up all over the Internet, and now Korea’s capital city has its very own. Seongkyoon Jeong, editor in chief of Humans of Seoul, feels that “Korean society tends to emphasize group consciousness, often ignoring individual existence, values, and diversity.”
“I wished I could peek at what people of Seoul experience, think and value, rather than the typical snippets that we commonly face with such as where they live and what they do for a living,” Jeong says.
With the help of his photographer friend, Kihun Park, and after being introduced to Humans of New York by a friend last summer, Jeong is attempting to do just that.
“As I saw the updated pictures of HONY on Facebook everyday, the dialogues below the picture hit me really hard. The aim of the project isn’t to merely show faces of ordinary people in New York City but to deliver some messages and values that have been overlooked in our society, where only extreme cases and accidents are reported through news media.”
“I don’t mean that news media isn’t worthwhile reading. However, as Brandon, the photographer of HONY, says, we’ve been cast away and are swaying in the wave of such extreme news, losing the sense of who we are and what we live for,” says Jeong. “I’ve come to conclusion that people living in Seoul definitely need Humans of Seoul to rethink themselves, however the quality of Humans of Seoul might be.”
Here are some of our best picks from Humans of Seoul.
“I was born in 1945. I had to depend on my cane to come here to see G. Dragon, but the concert tickets were sold out. Hey young man, do you have any spare tickets?”
“What was the most memorable moment while you stood here to give a free hug?”
“A five years old kid walked to us, being not sure whether he should or no. Then he finally gave us a hug. That was the best moment!”
“What’s the most frightened you’ve ever been?”
“I used to get scared by a door. Once, as I was sleeping, someone rang my doorbell. Having been scared of the guy, I couldn’t reach the door and got more frightened as he kept ringing the bell. It turned out later that it was some guy who wanted to talk to my family because my parent’s car was parked wrong. It was a mere door between the guy and myself, but why did I have to get so scared?”
“These are not glasses.”
“I’m 80 years old and was born when the GDP per capita was lower than $100. Back then murders and suicides hardly ever happened. There is something wrong with society today. We seriously need to start a certain revolution now.”
“Do you want to interview us? You should interview my boyfriend, because he’s the king of pretentiousness.”
Words and photographs published with permission from Humans of Seoul