Early last year, we asked you if you would be willing to pay just to watch someone eat food online. Not surprisingly, most of you thought the idea was crazy.
What was surprising was just how popular these live-stream eating shows have become in South Korea. Seo Yeon Park, a popular online eater (is that even the correct term?) quit her job to become a full-time online eater. After all, she makes up to $9000 a month by eating in front of the camera for three hours a day. How? Her loyal fans, of course. Can’t let your favorite online eater starve, right?
After discovering this South Korean phenomenon, The Fine Bros decided this would make for a great reaction video. And who better to watch people eat online than those who are used to being in front of the camera themselves? Check out your favorite YouTubers reacting to live-stream Korean eating shows:
The YouTubers reacted with confusion, disgust, confusion, envy and of course, confusion. Many simply didn’t understand the appeal to watching other people eat.
“People enjoy the vicarious pleasure of my online show when they can’t eat that much, don’t want to eat food at night, or are on a diet,” Seo Yeon explained to Reuters. “One of the best comments I ever received from a viewer who said that she had gotten over her anorexia by watching me eat. That really meant a lot to me.”
And that’s not the only reason people tune in. Apparently, these shows are sometimes viewed simply for company. “For Koreans, eating is an extremely social, communal activity, which is why even the Korean word ‘family’ means ‘those who eat together,’” says Professor Sung-hee Park of Ewha University’s Division of Media Studies.
So what’s the final verdict? While it doesn’t seem like live-stream eating will be a fad in the US anytime soon, no one’s arguing that the job description is something to be envious about.
As one YouTuber remarked, “$9000!? Sign me the hell up!”