New to KAIST this semester is BORAKAI, a five-minute news program that is aired online each Sunday. Following BORAKAI’s first broadcast on March 9, The KAIST Herald conducted an interview with Seung Hoon Choi, the producer, to find out more about BORAKAI’s activities.
Can you briefly introduce yourself?
My name is Seung Hoon Choi, a senior in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering. I am currently the representative of the KAIST Student Village Media and producer of BORAKAI.
When did BORAKAI first take off, and what was the purpose behind it?
Well, to be more specific, our organization is called the KAIST Student Village Media, and BORAKAI is the news program that we produce. We first started our nonprofit organization around the end of January with three people including myself. I had experience working as a student reporter for Hyundai and on the KAIST Magazine Editing Committee. I was also the director of “Les KAISTrouble,” the parody clip of Les Misérables that was released last year. Participating in these activities made me interested in creating a new media format at our university that combined news reporting and video content. Two of my friends thought it was a good idea and suggested that we try it out. Viewing our university as a village, our vision was to create a solid platform on which communication among its residents could take place and where public opinion could be expressed.
How often will there be a BORAKAI broadcast and what are the roles of the individuals involved in its production?
BORAKAI is broadcasted once a week. A new video is released precisely at 9 p.m. on Sundays through Facebook and YouTube. We made an internal promise that we will always make this deadline in order to establish credibility with our audience. Our team is comprised of eight people – two news anchors, a financial manager, a designer who works on images and infographics, three writers, each of whom is responsible for a different news corner, and myself, the producer.
Can you tell us about the kind of content to expect when tuning into BORAKAI?
An episode of BORAKAI is made up of three corners. In the first corner, the three biggest news stories of the week are introduced. Because the greatest objective of BORAKAI is to form a community within a community, we select only news stories that are directly related to KAIST. In the second corner, there is an interview. The interviewee will usually be a student - we want to invite the typical student you see every day on campus to talk with us on the program in order to make our content more relatable to our audience. The final corner consists of a survey. Because BORAKAI is a news program, we thought it was important for us to know the opinions of the people who live within our community regarding particular issues or questions.
How is BORAKAI supported financially? Where do you receive the funds required to run the program?
Our operations are supported by the “Making a Good Village” grant, sponsored by the Daejeon municipal city government’s Social Capital Support Center. We applied for the grant and were selected to receive a moderate sum. We have also been approved by the university’s media funding committee to receive some of their funds.
How would you like to see BORAKAI develop in the future?
BORAKAI is still in its early stages, so we cannot guarantee how successful it will be yet. We treat our work at BORAKAI very seriously. We do not consider our organization to be a student club, and our activities are not centered on socialization. We are thinking about seeing how it goes for one semester, and if we believe it to be a worthy endeavor, we will continue to produce episodes of BORAKAI; but if we conclude that BORAKAI is no longer wanted, we will cancel it. If the program is very successful, we do have some thoughts about providing spin-off programs to other universities. For example, BORAYONSEI or BORAKOREA.
Do you have anything else you would like to say? Any additional comments?
I realize that The KAIST Herald has a primarily English speaking audience. We currently do not provide our services in English, especially since we are on a tight schedule – it is not an easy task, even to draft up our scripts on a weekly basis. However, we do hope to make BORAKAI accessible in English as well, though we do not know when that will be as of yet. We will continue to put in our utmost effort to improve and to better cater to our audience in the future. Please remember to tune into BORAKAI on Sunday nights at 9 p.m.!