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Beggar-room Craze: Scolded for Spending Money
  • By Jo Ah-bin, cub-reporter
  • 승인 2023.05.29 02:39
  • 호수 320
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▲ KakaoTalk Open Chat 'beggar-room' thumbnail capture screen: (left to right) Image of having an empty wallet and an image of a beggar

Recently, beggar- room has become popular among the younger generation to reduce extreme consumption. 'Beggar- room,' is a kind of, 'saving room,' where anonymous people gather in KakaoTalk's open chat room, set their own monthly spending goals, and then share each other's daily spending details to induce saving habits. Since the beggar- room is managed with the aim of, "saving like a beggar," people gathered in this open chat room encourage people to save money and give advice if they spend unnecessarily.

On the 19th, as a result of searching for the, 'beggar- room,' in the KakaoTalk open chat search box, more than a hundred, "beggar- room," chat rooms were opened and operated. The reason why the beggar- room was able to become popularized among the MZ Generation is because of, 'humor.' If a beggar- room participant spends too much money, he or she will be reprimanded by other participants, but this reprehension method of conversation is based on humorous communication. In fact, in one beggar- room chat, when a participant said, "It cost 40,000 won excluding a reservation fee for a personal color analysis," another participant said, "Why do you need a personal color analysis? Put some colored papers next to your face." In another chat room of a beggar- room, when the participant tried to ask other participants for consent, saying, "Starbucks? You've got more than enough." "Drink water." "Why do you buy water? Just go to the company and drink some water," he said, actively trying to prevent participants' consumption.

This phenomenon of the, 'beggar- room,' fad is also proof that the 2030 Generation is experiencing social and economic difficulties such as, 'high interest rates,' and, 'high prices.' The 2030 Generation is increasingly being pushed into jobs with less job stability. Based on statistics compiled in the first quarter of this year (January to March), the youth unemployment rate in Korea reached a record all- time low. The youth unemployment rate peaked at 11.3% in 2016 after hovering between 7- 9% every year with the starting point of 10.1% in the first quarter of 2000. The youth unemployment rate remains at an all- time low this year after falling from 9.9% in 2021 to 6.7% in 2022 due to COVID- 19. On the surface, the statistics show an improvement in youth unemployment, but the inside story is very different. According to an analysis by the National Statistics Office, the recent increase in the number of young people employed was only in the accommodation and restaurant industry. Considering that the length of service is short due to the nature of the lodging and restaurant industry, and employment stability is not high due to active job flipping and changing, the job quality is rather deteriorating as compared to the number of jobs maintained by the young generation.

In addition, in the three years since COVID- 19, loans for those in their 30s and younger have increased by 27%, the highest among all age groups. The reason for the surge in youth loans is that asset prices such as real estate and stocks have soared over the past three years in the aftermath of COVID- 19, while generations in their 20s and 30s have been hit directly by the economic recession. Along with the rise in interest rates, consumer prices and the cost of living are also rising, with prices remaining higher than in previous years.

Like the, 'jjantech,' which is a compound word of, 'cheap,' and, 'investment technology,' which was popular in the past, and the, 'no- spending challenge,' craze that achieves 0 won spending, the, 'beggar- room,' that has caused a craze this year seems to have spread widely based on the culture of play and the formation of consensus. Lee Eun- hee, a professor at Inha University's Department of Consumer Science, explained, "People rely on, encourage, and help each other to practice frugality by creating a beggar- room," and, "We can also cultivate a thrifty habit, resolution, and power of execution through communication in a light way." CWNU students should also form wise spending habits against skyrocketing prices. One way to prevent overspending would be to participate in a tragicomic system of relentlessly reprimanding people for overspending: 'beggar- room.'

By Jo Ah-bin, cub-reporter  opal_40@naver.com

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