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Thread: Yu-Na Kim or Kim Yu-Na?

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    Custom Title Johar's Avatar
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    Yu-Na Kim or Kim Yu-Na?

    I've been reading and hearing both versions, so is one correct or are both acceptable?

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    I think this question has been answered a billion times already but let me put this issue to rest, in Korean as with other east Asian languages i.e. Chinese, Japanese it is convention to say the family name first followed by the "first" name, hence Kim Yu-na. The media of course is generally ignorant of these sort of things and will just say the name they see on paper.. so if they see a form that says "First Name: Yuna; Last Name: Kim" more likely than not they will just say "Yu-na Kim" So I guess if you want to be culturally sensitive you would say "Kim Yu-na".

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    Quote Originally Posted by wonbinfan86 View Post
    I think this question has been answered a billion times already but let me put this issue to rest, in Korean as with other east Asian languages i.e. Chinese, Japanese it is convention to say the family name first followed by the "first" name, hence Kim Yu-na. The media of course is generally ignorant of these sort of things and will just say the name they see on paper.. so if they see a form that says "First Name: Yuna; Last Name: Kim" more likely than not they will just say "Yu-na Kim" So I guess if you want to be culturally sensitive you would say "Kim Yu-na".
    A sidenote regarding her name.

    Her Korean name can be better represented in English as Kim Yeon Ah and pronounced as Kim Yeona.
    So why has Yeon Ah or Yeona become Yuna or Yu-na?

    I read it somewhere that when she got her first passport (the details of my memory might be incorrect here, someone can correct me if I'm not 100% accurate with the specifics), she signed her name in English as Yuna Kim, because "yu" is sometimes pronounced to sound similar to "yeo". For example, as in "yup", "yuppy" and "yuk".

    It's a similar situation to Korean automaker Hyundai. In Korea, it is pronounced as Hyeondae. Again, you see how Koreans spelt "yu" to sound similar to "yeo".

    But of course, almost all of westerners, when they see the spelling Yu-na or Yuna, they pronounce it as "u~ na", so her unofficial English name is pronounced that way.

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    It seems to me YuNa doesn't care, either way.

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    I noticed since last SA they started calling her 'KIM Yuna' instead of 'Yuna Kim'.
    I honestly didn't know why, but I guessed they were trying to respect asian culture.
    Then I wondered, then why not ANDO Miki, NAKANO Yukari, YAN Liu or SHU Binshu who also attended same event?
    So, I still have no idea.

    Oh, by the way, there is one European country where they use family name first and given name last just like in east asian countries. Is it Hungary? Or is it Rumania? ....Or is it somewhere else? Suddenly confused...
    I wonder how they write their names when they compete internationally.
    Last edited by gourry; 10-25-2009 at 10:13 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cosmos View Post
    It seems to me YuNa doesn't care, either way.

    Kind of reminds me of Joe Biden saying, "You can call me whatever the heck you want."

    (On Jay Leno, IIRC, in an indirect response to Sarah Palin's "May I call you Joe?" request.)

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    How about Julia Sebestyen? Why aren't people calling her Sebestyen Julia?

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    I like pie. Tonichelle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ks777 View Post
    How about Julia Sebestyen? Why aren't people calling her Sebestyen Julia?
    ... because she's not East Asian decent???

    but she goes by YuNa, right? Isn't that how Brian Orser says when speaking of her?

    Scott Hamilton calls her Kim Yuna... so not all of those Media people are ignorant

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    Quote Originally Posted by cosmos View Post
    It seems to me YuNa doesn't care, either way.
    And quite often the non-English speaking people take pride in the 'internationalisation' of their identity anyway.

    For instance, I remember Brian Joubert saying how he quite likes being called "Ju ber" as opposed to "Yu ber." And Japanese fans more often than not refer to their stars like "She's Midori Ito (as opposed to Ito Midori) of the world, not just of Japan", etc.

    That said, I do think it's an etiquette as a global member of the world to at least care to attempt to learn the right way. Like most of the US hosts used to call "Fumi-y (dropping the last syllable "e")", "Yoshi-y (same as Fumie)", with no sign of ever bothering to check.

    Quote Originally Posted by silverlining View Post
    Kind of reminds me of Joe Biden saying, "You can call me whatever the heck you want."

    (On Jay Leno, IIRC, in an indirect response to Sarah Palin's "May I call you Joe?" request.)
    Last edited by Tonichelle; 10-26-2009 at 10:12 AM. Reason: please use the multiquote feature, thanks :)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tonichelle View Post
    ... because she's not East Asian decent???
    Hungary is the only European country that puts the family name first. However, when Hungarians travel they switch it around to conform to the usage of the country they are in.

    I believe that Japanese also are apt to "Westernize" their names when they travel abroad or do business internationally. Moreso than Chiunese, Koreans and Vietnamese, for instance. So Mao Asada, Miki Ando, etc., are used to being called like that outside of Japan.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tonichelle
    Scott Hamilton calls her Kim Yuna... so not all of those Media people are ignorant
    Yeah, I think NBC made a conscious corporate decision starting with Worlds last year to show cultural sensitivity inthat way. Maybe Kwan Ying Shan made them do it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Maybe Kwan Ying Shan made them do it.



    So it is Hungary! You answered my question. Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hikki View Post
    Like most of the US hosts used to call "Fumi-y (dropping the last syllable "e")", "Yoshi-y (same as Fumie)", with no sign of ever bothering to check.
    Here is how to remember, in song.

    Ta-ra-ra-BOOM-de-ay,
    Suguri FOO-mee-ay! ♫♪

    The funny thing is, now that U.S. broadcasters are saying "Kim Yu-na," most American television viewers will think that Kim is her personal name, like Kimmie Meissner.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    Here is how to remember, in song.

    Ta-ra-ra-BOOM-de-ay,
    Suguri FOO-mee-ay! ♫♪

    The funny thing is, now that U.S. broadcasters are saying "Kim Yu-na," most American television viewers will think that Kim is her personal name, like Kimmie Meissner.
    hmmm......how about "Kimmie Yuna"

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    Figure Skating Is A Dangerous Sport Dee4707's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by janetfan View Post
    hmmm......how about "Kimmie Yuna"
    Love it!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by gourry View Post
    I noticed since last SA they started calling her 'KIM Yuna' instead of 'Yuna Kim'. I honestly didn't know why, but I guessed they were trying to respect asian culture.
    ABC/ESPN goes by the 'Western' convention of surname last (e.g. Yuna Kim), and did all of the skating competition telecasts for many years up through the 2007-2008 season.

    NBC/Universal goes by the Asian convention of surname first (Kim Yuna). NBC began televising Skate America last year.

    [Paul Wylie, who is now commentating for Universal Sports but formerly commentated for ESPN, mistakenly referred to 'Lu Chen' during the Grand Prix telecast over the weekend. He should have called her 'Chen Lu' to remain consistent.]

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