Business Insider Edition

A North Korean YouTuber is making videos that explain what it was like to live there, including how he never knew transgender people existed

Lindsay Dodgson , Business Insider US
 Oct 14, 2019, 07:09 AM
Jang Myung-jin.
  • A North Korean YouTuber is sharing videos about what his life used to be like when he lived there.
  • Jang Myung-jin now lives in Seoul in South Korea, like many North Korean refugees.
  • He talks about many topics, including how North Koreans raise animals like pigs, rabbits, and dogs, but they don't tend to keep them as pets. Instead, they eat them or sell them to the market, he said, according to the Associated Press (AP).
  • Jang has about 7,000 subscribers so far, and receives messages from viewers about how he is opening their eyes about North Korea.
  • "They cheer me up and make me be positive," he told AP. "They are the reasons why I shoot YouTube videos today and tomorrow."
  • For more stories go to www.businessinsider.co.za.

Jang Myung-jin, a 32-year-old North Korean YouTuber, posts videos on his channel that describe what life was like to live in the secretive country. In one video, he talks about North Korean swear words and how he never knew about the existence of transgender people, according to the Associated Press.

Jang now lives in South Korea, like many North Korean refugees, but tells stories of what it was like when he used to live under the repressive regime, sometimes wearing a Kim Jong Un mask.

He talks about many topics, including how North Koreans raise animals like pigs, rabbits, and dogs, but they don't tend to keep them as pets. Instead, they eat them or sell them to the market, he said.

In one video he explained that it's profanity to say "a baby born by a young female slave," and a phrase used to intimidate someone is: "Do you want to have the order of your ribs revolutionarily reorganised?"

Sometimes he invites friends onto his channel to talk about their own stories and experiences, or gets them to shoot his videos when he's walking around Seoul.

Jang has about 7,000 subscribers so far, and receives messages from viewers about how he is opening their eyes to North Korea.

"They cheer me up and make me be positive," he told AP. "They are the reasons why I shoot YouTube videos today and tomorrow."

Jang said he had never known transgender people existed when he lived in North Korea, but he had heard of gay people. He also told AP the reason he ended up fleeing the country with his family in 1998.

When he was an 11-year-old, he had a crush on his school friend. But one day, when she didn't turn up to school, he went to her house to find she had died. His family left the country a few months later.

"I thought that her only fault was being born in the wrong country," he said. "If she had come to South Korea, she wouldn't have starved to death ... and could have become a YouTuber like me."

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