This blog may contain not-so-strong languages and slightly strong ecchi pictures. Please proceed with caution.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Search Engines in Korea, Part I: Daum (다음)

Daum Hannam Branch @ Ilshin Building - Italian Embassy, Seoul Yongsan-gu
Daum (Korean: 다음; Korea Exchange Stock Code: 035720) is a web portal in South Korea, like Naver and Nate. Daum offers many Internet services to web users, including a popular free web-based e-mail, messaging service, forums, shopping and news. The word "daum" is "多音", means "many sounds" in Sino-Korean. In fact, 'daum' also means 'next' in Archaic Korean. Daum Communications has two offices in Korea: the Main Office in Jeju and its branch at the Ilshin Building a.k.a Italian Embassy, Seoul Yongsan-gu.

The popularity of Daum stems from the range of services it offers, but also from the fact that it was the first Korean web portal of significant size. Its popularity started when it merged with the then most popular e-mail service, daum.net or hanmail.net. After the merging, Daum started the forum service Daum Cafe which brought its firm status in the market. The term cafe and even internet cafe (Different from what is supposed to refer to in Western usage) is now used as the synonym for "Internet forum" in Korean.

Daum Communications Jeju Main Office
From 2003, Daum started on-line direct automobile insurance by launching the subsidiary 'Daum Direct Auto Insurance' and from 2008, it became a partnership company with ERGO Insurance Group.

On August 2, 2004 Daum announced the purchase of Lycos for $95.4 million, and closed the transaction on October 6. As part of a corporate restructuring to focus on mobile, social networks and location-based services, Daum sold Lycos for $36 million in August 2010 to Ybrant Digital, an internet marketing company based in Hyderabad, India.

In 2006, they started a blogging service Tistory with 'Tatter and Company', a blogging platform developing company and in July 2007, Daum took over all rights to manage the services. The company also develops and distributes the freeware media player PotPlayer. In addition to its freeware media player(Daum tvPot), Daum Communications Corp. provides variety of services such as clouding service (Daum Cloud), Daum Dictionary (applicable on mobile devices), Daum Comics, and map service (Daum Maps).

Daum has about 874 employees as of March, 2009 and is the 2nd largest web portal service provider in terms of daily visit.