The decision to cast an 18 year old high school girl to appear in a collection of sexually-suggestive photographs has caused a dispute on the Internet over the suitability of using a teenager in these images.
Applemilk Communications (www.hellokind.co.kr), a publisher well-known for collections of photos of amateur models, announced Monday that it has selected Choi Eun-jung, a high school junior, as one of two models who will be featured in the third edition of its ``Kind Glamour'' photo series.
I checked and Naver lists her date of birth as 1991; often in Korean papers the age listed will be two years higher---18 in Choi's case---because of the Asian age-reckoning system. The HelloKind page doesn't seem to be working now and instead just has these two pictures (Choi is on the right).
Googling around shows its specialty is busty women in bikinis and lingerie, and I wonder if it's any coincidence that "Kind"---in addition to being an English adjective" also means child in German. The article continues:
``The domestic photo collection market has been growing fast but the quality of models has been sliding, failing to meet public expectations,'' said Shim Young-gyu, president of Applemilk Communications. ``We focused on young models this time.''
It is the first time in three years that a high school girl has been picked as a model for the collection of photos in which models pose in revealing attire. In 2006, Lee Ji-yeon modeled for a collection of sexually-suggestive photos at the age of then 17.
The selection of Choi is drawing criticism from some netizens on Web sites. ``It's not right to pick a teenager for these types of pictures,'' said a netizen with the username ``muse.''
However, Shim said current laws do not ban high school girls from appearing in these shoots.
Well, in spite of the headline "Selection of Highschooler for Glamour Model Causes Stir," it looks like the Korea Times is merely advertising for the site. After all, the "stir" comes from one lone netizen, expressing a fairly generic opinion.
James Turnbull of The Grand Narrative last night on Twitter reminded me of the story from January of semi-nude photographs of a 14-year-old model and the controversy it caused in Korea. As a language aside, "glamour" (글래머) in Korean means busty, but has a different meaning in English.
And on Chosun.com last week, pictures of Chinese high school girls in bikinis.