The problem prior to 2002 was not the Romanization issue itself, but the inconsistency in using it, as Gomushin Girl mentions. The ŏ and ŭ were a problem for some on their computers and in doing searches, but it would have been a lot cheaper for the Korean government to work with Microsoft and Apple to make ŏ and o mutually searchable than to spend the tens of millions of dollars they did changing signs and everything else.
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
My latest piece is in the Joongang Ilbo today, pulled together from the post "Chairman of the Presidential Committee on National Competitiveness wants to tinker with romanization." I got a call yesterday evening from the paper asking me if they could rework a couple things because they could not reproduce two of the characters I used: ŏ and ŭ. They're from kushibo's comment, which has thus proven itself ironic: