please refer to my on Korean On-Line Communities for you will understand that some post boards attract thousands of comments, leading to an obsession . add to this better Korean housewives’ chores of exchanging rumours in seeking new ways to multiply their fortune, which now to an extent has spread On-Line .

last March an incognito ID of “Minerva” (Greek Goddess of Wisdom) emerged to post in the debating forum Agora on the major Internet portal Daum . in a tone of rumbling to himself with a shot of alcohol he continuously criticized the government on economic strategy and predicted further worsening of the economy including the fall of Lehman Brothers . when those predictions came true one-by-one he had come to be dubbed “The Economic President on the .Net”

as his popularity soared with posts over 100 he declined official interviews seeming to be doing this in disappointment over the government, if not enjoying the cyber-state of stardom . he disclosed not much about himself other than claiming to have acquired a degree in the States and being a former securities firm executive .

as his posts continued to criticize the government to the extent of a cyber-threat to the local currency market, the authorities were seeking to put a halt to this but had no legal count to arrest him on . that is .. until 30 July when “he posted false information that the South Korean government had put out an executive order Number 1 dated 29 July : prohibiting 7 financial companies and major import-export firms from purchasing U.S. Dollars from 1 August onwards” .

after tracking his IP address stamped on servers when he signed-up at Daum, which directed to his home, he was arrested on the 22rd on breach of Telecommunications Network General Law, whose affected clauses are :

  1. purpose to damage public interest
  2. spreading of false information
  3. adhering to the decline of national credibility
  4. effecting currency market

as investigation continues, he is now found to be a Junior College graduate majored in Information & Communication, an unemployed 31 year old, whose knowledge on economics is self-taught and the predictions a calculated guess . he is currently denied bail and if convicted he can be charged a fine up to W50,000,000 or 5 years in jail .

consensus of the general population is “the return to the dark days of KCIA abducting protesters to the Military Dictators ..”