Real-life video clips showing office workers gleefully quitting their jobs are the latest phenomenon on the Internet. One video shows a young woman waving to get the attention of her co-workers as she enters her office, before informing them, "I told my boss I'm quitting!" as she pumps her fists in joy. Many of the videos have garnered tens of thousands of views.
A 12-minute clip posted on YouTube last month showed a college administrative staffer tendering her resignation and going through her last day at a job she had been doing for the previous two years. Her coworkers can be seen congratulating her and even presenting her with a cake. In another clip, a 25-year-old who has just quit his job at a labor law office to go backpacking around the world says, "Working in a large office, I felt as if my sense of existence was disappearing." Other videos show people talking with friends and having a good time watching sports or enjoying other activities after quitting their jobs.
The clips have drawn hundreds of comments such as, "I envy your courage," or "Incredible!" One individual wrote that he had been thinking about quitting for three years, saying, "I hope I will soon be able to share your feelings." Others said viewing the videos gave them a vicarious sense of satisfaction after they had been chided by their bosses.
Most of those people are office workers in their 20s and 30s. Unlike previous generations who saw quitting work as a form of defeat, young Koreans these days seem to embrace it as a new beginning. Critics say this trend is irresponsible and reckless, while supporters view it as a testament to the trials and tribulations of being a young office worker these days.
Many of those posting the videos say they just want to share their experience with those who are pondering quitting their jobs and give practical advice, as it is also true that it can be difficult finding new work.
Hwang Myung-jin at Korea University said, "Quitting and changing a job is no longer a taboo for young people in their 20s and 30s these days. It just requires solid preparation. It appears that these young people want to communicate with others through social media to help each other."