North Korea Mutating Due to International Media?

North Korea Mutating Due to International Media?

The internal workings of North Korea are changing, and for the better.  People in the DPRK are, with increasing technology, gaining more access to outside media, despite government efforts to keep it at bay.  This was evident in the recent rocket launch fiasco, when the government decided it best to admit their failure rather than try to keep up the pretense that everything had gone okay and that reports of failure were a Western plot.  They know that they can’t control things the way they used to and that the availability of information surpasses even their draconian attempts to remain insular.

Currently, there are laws in place which imprison people for watching non-DPRK media.  Studies are showing, however, that these laws are being enforced less-and-less despite the fact that they are becoming more restrictive.  Some of this no doubt has to do with the government’s reliance on citizens to become informants and turn in their neighbors who break the law.  People in the DPRK are not as willing to play the role of snitch anymore.  Another part of this may be that the government has simply resigned itself to the fact that people will find out, one way or another.

The presence of media on a wider scale changes the way the average DPRK citizen sees the world.  They know what people are saying about them and are even able to see many of the flaws within their own political system.  Eventually, they may come to realize, on a larger scale, exactly how much their leaders forego simple things, like feeding the people, in favor of extravagant showmanship that costs millions of dollars.

The question is, however, will the government allow the inevitable changes to happen?  Or will they try to fight the natural evolution of information and retain the limited hold on power that they now possess?  The growth of media may be the answer that the world has been seeking for so long, allowing change within the DPRK without the threats of violence.  Things are changing, to be sure.  Whether they are for better or worse will remain to be seen.