Konglish - WIKI IN KOREA


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English making its way into regular Korean at KFC - 디스문을 닫아주세요 in place of 문을 닫아주세요 for "please keep this door closed".

Konglish is a word that comes from two words, Korean and English, and refers to words that seem to be English words but have actually been created by Koreans and are not used by native English speakers. Konglish is often mistaken by Koreans as being real English, and can pose problems for translators who have to search for a new word to express the term, as well as misunderstandings where a company that hires a translator, mistaking a Konglish word for real English, may inquire as to why a certain word has not been translated as written in the original.

An example of this would be the following sentence:

네티즌 여러분, 안녕하십니까?

A person mistaking the word netizen for real English may expect a translation along the lines of "Hello netizens, how are you doing?" when the only suitable English translation would be a generic greeting along the lines of "Hello everybody, how are you doing?" or even a simple "Greetings".

Examples of Konglish

  • 네티즌 netizen - combination of internet and citizen, referring to people that spend a lot of time on the internet, or the total internet population. The term is also often used in a disparaging way to refer to people who spend too much time on the internet and have trouble dealing with the real world.
  • 화이팅 or 파이팅 fighting - does not mean to fight but rather to do one's best or to try to one's utmost. Used in sports matches or before a big event such as a test or even a date with someone one has liked for a long time.
  • 스킨 "skin" - Refers to the beauty product more commonly known as skin toner.
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