Filed under “Jobs We’d Like to Have,” one South Korean woman is capitalizing on the country’s burgeoning gastronomic voyeurism craze - the desire to watch others eat - by collecting big bucks for allowing thousands online to watch her eat food.
Her name is Park Seo-yeon, but she’s known “professionally” as The Diva, and rakes in about $9,000 a month to do the grubby deed while chatting with viewers, according to Reuters.
The Diva sits in front of her camera and dines for up to three hours a day from her apartment in the Seoul area of South Korea. She told Reuters, “People enjoy the vicarious pleasure of my online show when they can’t eat that much, or don’t want to eat food at night, or are on a diet.” She’s even quit her day job and, for now, has decided that it’s more profitable to just chow down for a living.
Reuters reports that there are several thousand channels in South Korea that are just like The Diva’s, some sponsored by restaurants. The idea is that viewers find comfort in watching to avoid the feeling of eating alone. Those tuning in can send virtual gifts to models they are watching eat, which can later be redeemed for cash.
And in the same fashion that some users make money eating, other South Korean cam profiteers are paid to play video games in front of the camera. According to Ultralab, more than half of the webcam channels on Afreeca TV (host of The Diva’s show) are for gaming voyeurism. The most popular titles are things like Starcraft and Grand Theft Auto.
So, wait: The tough occupation choice in South Korea is to pick between getting paid to play video games or getting paid to eat? Delta, I’ll take a one-way ticket to Seoul, please.
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