[Letter to the editor]Ownership entails responsibility

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[Letter to the editor]Ownership entails responsibility

Koreans lack a sense of ownership. Ownership literally means owning something, but it also includes not only using but also being responsible for whatever is owned.
Last year, the Chinese car model Chery QQ was the best-selling car in China. The Chery QQ is very similar to the Matiz from Korea since the manufacturers of the QQ patterned it after the Matiz blueprint that had been leaked to China. One month ago, core technologies of Hyundai-Kia were leaked secretly and illegally sold to a Chinese company by former and current Hyundai-Kia employees.
This news was very disappointing for me since I believe that even a kindergartner knows what he can barter or sell and what he should never give to others. It’s common sense that leakage of core technology is bad because it causes great loss to the Korean economy. Why are the leaks happening?
In my opinion, lack of ownership is the main reason. Employees don’t feel a bond between themselves and their companies. For them, the company is only a place to work. It’s why they don’t care about the great loss to the company but only about their own interests. Therefore, the employees can sell the core technologies of the company without feeling guilty.
Koreans don’t seem to know the precise meaning of ownership. They use this term only in claiming possession of property. They should learn the word’s deeper meaning. I suggest that something tangible, such as a contract, should hold an employee to a promise not to move to a rival company within some years of leaving, to prevent further leaks.
Lee Injung, Ilsan, Goyang, Gyeonggi
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