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“Ji-man Choi – What’s in a name?” by Kathy Moore, Ethnic Technologies

Date: Nov 12, 2020

Ji-man Choi – What’s in a name?

By Kathy Moore, Product Design Analyst, Ethnic Technologies

Who would have thought the year 2020 would bring about so much change? Along with the continued outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s also brought about many other “firsts”, including virtual reality as the norm, new fashion trends in face masks, quarantine regulations and a new way to enjoy social and sporting events, to name just a few “firsts” in our modern day.

One recent sporting event that took place was the 2020 MLB World Series between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Tampa Bay Rays in Arlington, Texas. Major League Baseball encountered a season like no other and that was no exception for South Korean Ji-Man Choi (Choi Ji-Man), Tampa Bay’s first baseman. Known for his contagious smile, Ji-Man Choi (Choi Ji-Man) is considered a legend in the making and the fourth Korean born player to reach the World Series (but the first batter to make it this far). The first South Korean born baseball player to make it to the MLB was Chan Ho Park (Park Chan-ho) back in 1994 for the Los Angeles Dodgers. To date there’s been a total of 22 Major League Baseball players from South Korea, 4 of which are active players including:

Ji-man Choi – (Choi Ji-man)
Shin-soo Choo – (Choo Shin-soo)
Kwang-hyun Kim – (Kim Kwang-hyun)

Hyun-jin Ryu – (Ryu Hyun-jin)

You might be wondering about the variations of the players names by now – don’t worry as it’s a common question. Korean names are generally made up of three syllables which follow the Eastern name order: family name first then the given name, for example Choi Ji-man. However, depending on the sport (such as baseball), the Western order will be used instead, given name first then the family name, as in Ji-man Choi.

Ji-man, considered a traditional Korean given name, is two syllables, one syllable to signify the generational level (meaning all children from the same generation in the family unit have part of their given name in common) and the other syllable to signify their true name. Given names with three or more syllables do exist but it is extremely rare. The longest name ever recorded in South Korea is “Haneulbyeollimgureumhaennimbodasarangseureouri” which prompted a 1993 law that a given name can be no more than five syllables.

Choi is a common Korean family name that can be traced back to the year 857. Family names are typically one syllable long and sub-divided into clans. Over half of the population will use one of the following five family names: Kim, Park, Lee, Choi or Chung. There are less than a total of 300 surnames used in Korea.  Another unique naming practice is that only the children will inherit the father’s family name, women do not take their husband’s name which is common in western countries.

In light of all the ‘firsts’ that took place this year, let Ethnic Technologies’ ethnic prediction help you find or validate your Korean customer base. With over 25 years of research, E-Tech software can predict a person’s ethnicity with the highest accuracy to best enhance your marketing campaigns and services.

About Ethnic Technologies

There is nothing the team at Ethnic Technologies loves better than to show our many clients and prospects the marketing power of our products and how we can help. Please contact us for a free analysis of your customer data or sample of our data products to reach the newest, fastest growing and highest dollar value groups of people to market to in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, etc.

Karen Sinisi
Director of Sales and Marketing
Ethnic Technologies
(201) 953-5380