Odds and Ends: This video is not available in your region
by | October 11, 2014 | 398 Comments

javabeans: Have you noticed that it seems to be getting strangely more difficult to find subtitled dramas these days? I don’t have any numbers or figures to support this, it’s just a feeling I’m getting from reading comments and hearing about people’s difficulties watching things.

girlfriday: Yeah is it an actual problem to find the shows you want to watch these days?

javabeans: We’re not making this up, right? There’s always been some amount of effort required to watch dramas, but lately it seems to be getting worse.

girlfriday: Maybe you guys — our readers — are better equipped to answer, since you’re the ones searching for shows to watch and tearing your hair out over lack of subs (or not), and can tell us we’re just imagining things.

javabeans: We don’t use subtitles so we don’t notice as quickly as our readers might, but I did go on a search the other day and had a really hard time finding shows I expected to be able to find. They were either georestricted (“This video is not available in your region”) or only licensed by one site, which then might also be georestricted.

girlfriday: It’s interesting that there seem to be more sites where you can watch dramas these days, but somehow fewer shows you can actually get access to.

javabeans: I really hope this is not a new trend that will continue because we are, above all else, fans of access. One huge component in Hallyu’s popularity is access! Yes, the dramas are addicting, but also, there was a concerted push to make them available widely. That worked. Why is that not working now?

girlfriday: Maybe it’ll just cycle back to the days of video stores and analogue pirated copies of dramas.

javabeans: Or underground fan operations, requiring memberships and secret passwords. But now that streaming has become the standard form of consumption (…right?), I don’t know how we’d go back to the ye olde ways of bootleg videos, syncing SRT files, softsubs, and all that.

girlfriday: For those of us who started our drama-watching that way, it’s not a big deal, but then it becomes so much harder for new fans — where would they start? How would you get your friends addicted to your favorite show? I can’t go back to the days of burning and mailing DVDs. Though… I will if I have to!

javabeans: Or mailing external hard drives back and forth?

girlfriday: It probably says a lot about us that we always pack a hard drive when visiting each other.

javabeans: Yes, it says that we’re efficient. If access becomes even more restricted, I really believe that Hallyu’s prominence (visibility, popularity, REVENUES) would drop drastically. If you make something really hard for people to find, people will generally not go out of their way to jump through your hoops — they’ll just turn to other content that’s more available. You know, which is how people came to Korean dramas in the first place.

girlfriday: Yes. Why is this a mystery? More access, more fans!

javabeans: It’s a little early to be declaring doom, perhaps, but I do find it a little unsettling. I don’t want this to be the beginning of the end! I like dramas. Even when they’re stupid, I like the idea of dramas and want them to continue to be available and watched and loved.

girlfriday: I would cry if dramas became unavailable to watch. I probably wouldn’t know what to do with myself, frankly.

javabeans: Maybe get a life?


javabeans: Apparently those exist. I’ve seen them in dramas.


398 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. civ0726

    I personally have found it easier I’ve been able to find everything I want. From going to Hulu and having dramas episode uploaded 2 to 3 days after they’ve aired with subtitles or dramafever and I have website that pretty much uploads them all. When I first started back in 2006 it was difficult no netflix or Hulu. Even when I was in Afghanistan in 2010 and 2011 late at night I was able to log in and download when the Internet restrictions were less. Of course that’s just me I don’t know about everyone else. It’s harder to find Korean movies if anything those get subtitles much more less.

    • 1.1 tee

      “It’s interesting that there seem to be more sites where you can watch dramas these days, but somehow fewer shows you can actually get access to.”

      This comment is so true. I subscribe to both viki.and df yet none is carrying the show I am enjoying the most now. That sucks. In particular, it seems VIKI is getting lesser licenses to the US region which is so annoying. So why the hell am I paying? I prefer V*** to D* cos they have better subs and also cos of the timed comments.
      But if I can’t access shows, I will cancel my sub with both in fact.

      And don’t even get me started on both of them not carrying cable shows. Spent the whole week looking for bad guys

      • 1.1.1 tee

        P.S sorry for jacking your post

      • 1.1.2 PL

        Just imagine the headaches for those of us outside the US and Canada. True, there are VPNs, but from what I’ve heard, they slow down your internet connection speed, as if it isn’t already slow enough.

        • Shi

          I live in Europe and there’s an awful lot of content that’s not available, but there’s ways to bypass restrictions. It’s true that many VPNs are slow, but if you test a few you’ll easily finde ones that are not.
          And there’s also quite a few sites that are not restricted and rip subs from DF.
          If a show gets subbed, then you can always find it somewhere.

          • PL

            How about quick, safe and free? Are there that many VPNs that meet all three criteria?

          • PL

            Thanks a lot though for your help! 🙂

          • Shi

            Firefox add-on Anonymox works best for me. I hardly notice the slow-down and it works just fine even without buying the full version. Didn’t encounter any safety problems either.

        • sarah

          VPNs are amazing, but you have to pay for the really good ones, of course (I know a couple that only cost about 10 a month). I think if you can afford it, it’s the best way to go. I would do some research to find the best one for your needs.

          I feel so lucky to live in the U.S. so I don’t have to worry about this ^^;;

          • Jay

            if not vpn, which am not using… a simple add-on like Hola on Chrome does the trick : you just change your IP’s country of origin to the one desired…and voilà !! ;)))

      • 1.1.3 Waiting

        “In particular, it seems VIKI is getting lesser licenses to the US region which is so annoying.”

        I have found this to be true lately. I prefer V as well, but the georestricting is happening more and more.An example, it seems that The Three Musketeers allowed certain more active viewers access and then it became restricted. The viewers who were most proficient in English lost access and could not help to sub. I can’t blame V as it may have been a restriction from the dramas owners. This is driving me to watch more things on alternate sites even though I don’t want to. If they make accessing shows more difficult, some of likely will lost interest. I know i likely will. I wish they did a better job negotiating licenses or the show owners need to understand they are doing themselves an injustice by playing hard to get or pricing themselves too high.

        Thanks for bringing this up JB and GF. Perhaps you can be our voice to anyone who may have influence or will listen.

        • Aigoooo

          I find it weird that the more money they invested into Viki, the worse the website got. I hardly go there anymore to watch.

          • laraffinee

            Yep – I used to love Viki and happily became a paid subscriber with them but since all of those changes, the viki site has only gotten worse and worse. I canceled my subscription once because of so many viewing and access problems, and then gave them another shot, but recently canceled for good because it is just not worth having SO many problems with lagging or stopping or no access even for the paid subscribers. I just had it. They even have a twitter site to post Viki site problems – I think that says it all.
            They were bought by Rakuten or some such company. It seems the problems may have started then. I have given up on them and have gone over to DF and no problems with them.

          • Ivoire

            @ laraffinee,
            I am sorry to read that you have had “SO many problems” with viki (to use your own words), yet I am also relieved to know that I am not the only one who has had an unpleasant experience with them. It makes me feel that I was not dreaming all those challenges I experienced with that site.

          • omoOmo

            i agree w/you – i also hardly go to V anymore, the other day i wanted to watch one of the dramas & it’s so frustrating to see ‘it’s not available in your region’ yayy

        • Ivoire

          Unfortunately, I have had a horrible experience with viki as well, and I have been a paid subscriber, for quite a while now. I do prefer their subs, however I have had all kinds of problems with the site. I have found myself constantly writing to them, and at times, I don’t even get a response, like my complaint does not matter. My last complaint (written 2 or 3 weeks ago) has still not gotten an answer.

          I once complained about my lack of HD images, though I was a subscriber, and I had to send pictures of dramas for which the quality of the image was not good (and images of scenes in dramas that were actually HD for me). I had to take some tests, to make sure that my computer was not at fault/not the problem and that my internet connection was good. I am not very computer and technology savvy, however I did comply and submit all the evidence that was required of me. I did all that work to be told that they could not help me (bummer). And they did not reply to me right away, I had to wait some weeks to hear from them.

          I was considering being a subber for Kdramas, from English to French, now I am reconsidering that thought. It would be hard for me to want to dedicate my time to subbing (though I would like to try it), when I feel that as a subscriber/customer I have not been treated well. Yet every month, without fail, money is deducted from my account for my subscription (I am rethinking that one too).

          In the past 2 or 3 months, I have watched dramas on other sites (with a lesser image quality, and sometimes a lesser subbing quality as well), more than I have on viki, which has been extremely disappointing, and I am a very patient person in general. I was one of those who had said in a poll that I would support viki having a paid subscription, if it would help the site. Now, based on my experience, I am wondering if I was not wrong about my assumptions and my expectations.

          It has gotten so bad that I am actually now surprised, when I can watch a full ep. on viki, without having that wheel turning thing on the screen every 7 seconds or so, or the ep. crashing and when I refresh the page, I am told that there is an error, and that I should try again later. I have lost count of how many times I have gotten that message. I was such a fan of viki a few years ago. Now, hum…

          • ck1Oz

            It’s not only you all of us long time volunteers had the same issue. It’s the server not you. It’s worse for us as we couldn’t sub the episode. Or design or make changes on the cover page. Or write to anyone. For months. It gave us all the shits. I don’t know what viki is coming to. The viki app was crashing as well. I am used to doing the server check, screenshot etc but we couldn’t get a timely answer as well. Of what the issue was. After like 20 to 50 attempts a day considering some days we have airing dramas- I might be more homicidal towards viki than you.

          • Ivoire

            Hello ck1Oz,

            As I said to laraffinee, I am not rejoicing that you also experienced SOOOOOO many problems with viki, however I feel relieved to know that I was not the only one. The customer service has gotten so bad, I honestly wonder how and why they might think it is OK to run a business in that manner *Shake my head*

            I totally understand you about feeling homicidal towards viki, after what you, other people and I have experienced. Do you still volunteer for them? (I was just curious). You could also private message me on viki, I don’t know if you remember my name there. I have written to you a few times in the past. Thank you for sharing your experience with us, so sad (and so very disappointing) to read.

        • Caroline

          Hmm… I haven’t really noticed this issue with Viki (maybe the fact that I am a QC gives me more access?) but I can see how that can be an issue.

          At the same time, I feel that as a general rule the subs at Viki are better than those at other websites because more people can contribute. I personally sub on Viki occasionally, which I would never do if I had to join an official team and commit to a project (I work full time and am preparing to go to law school). I prefer quality to quantity, though I realize my position as a native speaker of Korean gives me a privileged perspective on this.

          • Ivoire

            Hello Caroline,

            I am glad for you that you have not experienced the kind of issues I mentioned in my post, because I suspect that you might have given up on the site a while ago, or by now (maybe). As I mentioned in my post, I can be very, very patient, and I would always write to the Help Center when I had an issue.

            Thing is though, after a while, one becomes a disgruntled customer, if you find yourself having to complain or ask for help so often, because you can’t have access to the HD option (even though you are a paid subscriber), so viki had to do something about it, because I couldn’t. And that happened quite a few times. You add to that the other issues I mentioned, and you seriously wonder why you are even putting up with it, when you are actually paying to get a service. They are not doing you (meaning me) any favors, and many of us subscribers are not asking for the moon. We just want access to dramas (when we want to watch them), and HD quality, since we are paying for it.

            We also want dramas and episodes we can watch from beginning to end, without the lagging, and other issues laraffinee and I mentioned. Laraffinee even gave viki a 2nd chance, that is how much she wanted it to work. And as for me, I have been delaying my cancelling my subscription as well, and wondering if I would still like to become a subber. I have read that it can be time consuming, etc… and so it would be easier for me to be enthusiastic about that prospect (at this point) if I had had a good experience with viki.

            As you said, maybe being a QC had to do with you having a really good experience at viki, and that is great (for you 🙂 ). I too prefer quality to quantity, and to be honest, I do not watch many dramas a year to start with. I can count on one hand (or maybe two) how many I watch in a year. So for me, when I am watching a drama, I would really like to be immersed in it, and that desire is killed when your effort to watch the drama of your choice leaves you feeling very frustrated.

            As I said to laraffinee, I am glad to know that I was not the only who had been very disappointed with my experience with viki. I wish there were someone (or some people) we could contact, who would actually pay attention and care about our complaints.

            You being a native speaker of Korean is a quality that you get to enjoy, good for you (and I am not being sarcastic). There are many of us who do not however, and so when we chose to pay for a service on a site that provides subtitles, it would be nice to experience and enjoy what we are paying for.

            Caroline, although I did use your expression, I will confess that I did not understand why you said that. Could you please explain why you said you preferred “quality over quantity?” I was just curious about that. Thank you.

          • d

            yup.. maybe i’m a QC also so i dont realize all this restricted views/channel.

            but still its quite disappointing for me coz they are few shows that i would love to watch and sub but not aired in viki due to license problem

          • Caroline


            Thanks for expanding on your position. While I do not have to endure the unique frustrations that result from trying to watch a show in a language I don’t speak, your comments reminded me of a time before Viki, Dramafever, and many of the current streaming sites we have today. It was very frustrating not being able to find dramas I wanted to see or having to wait forever for the episode to load. I sympathize fully with the issues you, as well as many others in the community, deal with.

            To clarify my comment on quality over quantity, I meant that I prefer a site with fewer dramas but high quality subs to one where there are many dramas but terrible subs. While I don’t need subs, I instinctively read them if they’re there and they distract me a LOT when they misinterpret a scene, especially if it’s a key one. I’ve seen some terrible, absolutely terrible subs on Dramafever and other websites when I occasionally use them, but I feel that because Viki is more… open source (?), such errors are less likely when you have a team that can easily go in and fix just one line. There have been times when I got so frustrated by the subs that I fixed them myself, though in recent years that has become more difficult as subs become open only to specific subbing teams on Viki.

          • Ivoire

            Hello Caroline,

            My response is late, however I do hope that you will get to see it. I appreciate your response, and your sympathizing with the struggles we (non Korean speakers) experience, in trying to find and have a good streaming site that would deliver in quality (both of the subtitles, and the HD image) of the dramas we are trying to watch. I am particularly sensitive to this, as I am a linguist myself. I speak four different languages fluently, and Foreign Languages were my major when I was in college.

            Thank you also for clarifying your comment on quality over quantity, and I feel the same way you do. When it comes to viki though, I also find sad that not only have some viewers had a negative experience with that site (as of late), but so have some of the managers of the subtitling teams, as I read among the commenters (one of whom directly responded to my comment. She has been volunteering for viki for many years, as I have seen her name on Dramabeans and on viki for a few years at least).

            I do think that quality subs are a must, especially if you have viewers who are willing to pay for such a service. I would have to also add that I had noticed a few times that either the comments were not well segmented on viki, or the subtitles were not complete. There would be words I would recognize, that I did not see subtitled, and at times, the characters spoke for a long time, however the subtitles were not as long.

            I used to think that the quality of the subtitles on viki were top notch, and now, even though I think they might be a little more detailed than the subs on DF, I am not sure that they are as good as they might have once been (just my impression, I could be wrong).

            I also find it disappointing that it has become harder to fix subtitling mistakes on viki in recent years (as you mentioned), though I would imagine it became so, to restrict or avoid a big number of people being able to just change some of the subtitles (not everyone might be as good as you are, regarding the Korean language). What I really find sad, is that once again, the viewer is the one who loses out in the end, when it comes to quality subs. Kdramas have been one of the ways I have (slowly) been learning the Korean language (in which I am very interested).

            So, when I am given inaccurate subs or not given subs at all (especially, as you pointed out for important scenes), I am losing out on some words or expressions I could have learned, yet, I am paying for that service. I really deplore how poorly the customer service has been at viki. I really wish they would truly care more about their customers.

          • Ivoire

            Caroline, part II of my response:

            I would add that I watched an Indian movie on viki once, and the segmentation of the subtitles was horrible. So, the problems are not only with the Korean shows, they seem to extend to other languages as well. That makes me feel like viki does not care about the quality of their site, as they proclaim they do, or at least as we are let to believe. Again, I am speaking based on my personal experience. When will we, the viewers be taken (truly) seriously? That is what I would (really) like to know.

            Thank you for your time, Caroline, and for this conversation. All my best to you, getting into law school and doing well once you are in. Caroline, Fighting!!! 🙂

        • Whatsthescenario

          Very late to the party but…
          This entire Odds and Ends Post is so timely, bc I found myself wondering about this very subject A LOT lately. It seems that V doesn’t get as many series anymore. For my region, they keep promoting and pushing us to watch Indian dramas. Nothing wrong with that, but not my interest right now. They use to get so many dramas and now it’s only a few.

          I loved V because of their speedy, accurate subs. That is my biggest problem with DF. Their subs suck!!!! They just paraphrase long sentences into a few short lines, when you KNOW that’s not what the character said. They fail to use terms like Oppa or Unni by just inserting the characters’ name instead (it’s frustrating). They try to use the most horrible versions of American slang too, like “Hey dude!” or something equally as corny, instead of using the korean terms (“Daebak!” “Heol!”) etc. They Americanize the subs a little too much. I’ve tested their accuracy by comparing their subs to other sites and they’re context is so off the mark sometimes. It changes the point of the scene altogether.

          I’ve always been in DSS (I wish they could finish Childless Comfort…PLeeeeeeeeease!) and a few new ones tend to pop up every now and again. Like everyone else said, the quality of their vids are the problem and they steal subs from other sites.

          I blame this whole think on DF, really. Once they got into the game of being a paid – licensed site, they started shutting down the independent fan-based sites that subbed as a labor of love. I hate it!!!!

          Thanks for some of the other suggestions on this post about where to look.

      • 1.1.4 Dray

        Random but have you found a subbed bad guys yet? I’ve only found a raw version & my korean isn’t that good.

        • simi

          Episode 1 is up on
          They often, but not always, have dramas that hulu, viki, dramafever don’t have. The subs aren’t always as good though. Anyways hope this helps.

        • Johanna

          Go to for good quality fan-subbed Bad Guys.
          Excellent subs.

          • Chingu

            Yes Darksmurf subs are fine but they are way way behind the actual drama that’s airing.

      • 1.1.5 MIKEY

        I found Bad Guys on mysoju. It is annoying that Dramafever doesn’t get the cable channel programs.

  2. JoAnne

    I don’t know how you’d call them, but the nighttime, weeknight, 2-ep dramas, they seem to get covered pretty thoroughly for the major networks – less so for cable.

    We were pretty surprised to see that NO ONE was carrying OCN’s Bad Guys, and then it popped up after a few days at DSS. We actually got involved in helping edit the translated lines just to keep it moving! Which was fun, and felt good to help – but I really don’t need to add yet ANOTHER activity to my list. I devote hours as it is to KDrama and related subjects.

    Dailies and long weekend dramas seem to have less availability as subbed programs, and aren’t as fast as the others when they are subbed. I don’t watch many of those but I think that’s what I hear.

    There’s a LOT more ‘you can only watch it here’ going on, and that started with those D-whatever notices.

    Whatever it is, it goes back to the people who own the dramas and sell the rights: if they can get more money by giving exclusive access to one outlet than they can get for selling it to several, then that’s what they’re going to do. That is the bottom line for them.

    I have a lot of friends who torrent; it’s not something I want to get into. If availability of shows dries up then eventually, sadly, I will probably change from being immersed in the community of watchers to being an occasional participant.

    By the way…all the streaming sites carrying subbed Episode 1 of Bad Guys now? They took those subs from an early version of the still not yet fully translated set at DSS. So if you think the subs are terrible, complain to the sites about their behavior – and if you have an account at DSS, go watch it there. They’re much better there as more work has been done.

    • 2.1 canxi

      Oh, I am glad that DSS got Bad Guys. They also got Yoona’s Street so they are a savior.

      • 2.1.1 Nat

        can you please give me a direct link to Bad Guys episodes that are subbed? I tried dss but it couldnt be found for some reason. It looks like an amazing drama and I really want to watch it. Can you give me a link?

        • JoAnne

          I don’t think they list it until it’s complete. But on the main page if you just scroll down, you will see it.

        • dfwkimchi

          One thing i found out about DSS – u need to have created an account to see the Beta version of the site that would then show the Cable drama option. If u do not sign in to account – only the Free to Air Drama option shows on their site. Found this out by accident really when on my tablet (which is signed into my accouhnt) – i was able to watch Yoona’s Street but could not for the live of me get the Cable option on my desktop. After some observation (i am an IT person) – i saw the difference.

          Hope this helps.

          Marathoned Yoona’s Street once i saw the DSS had them sub – it is a very good series.

          Caught Bad Guys there this weekend. Will be watching!

        • Mimi

          Try They are pretty good about uploading raw videos and then later adding the subs which they get from other sites such as DF, DSS, etc. Admittedly, sometimes the subs are less than par. Also, you don’t have to sign in with an account like DSS. The first episode is subbed which I’m assuming is courtesy of DSS.

      • 2.1.2 sogazelle

        MYASIANTV has all those dramas sub the same day for free without ads…

        It’s one of the best websites.

        I stop my subscription with dramafever when I saw that I could watch the same dramas at myasiantv the same day subbed and ad free while I had to wait 1 or 2 days with dramafever as a paying member.

        It was a no brainer for me.

        They carry korean, japanese, hong kong, taiwanese dramas and movies.

        • JoAnne

          Not true, actually. They do no subbing of their own, from what I understand, so they only have subbed episodes when someone else does.

          For example, the subs they have for Bad Guy? Lifted from DSS, as I mentioned earlier.

          • Frustrated with Span Subs

            My problem is that everything seems to be “Spanish Subbed” these days-especially on YT! It pisses me off. I don’t know where all my “ENG SUB”bers went, but I wish they’d come back!! I’m pretty tired of looking for a music video or drama and finding it only with Spanish subs!

            Anyone else having that problem, too?

            I’m glad K-entertainment is being globalized now, but I miss my Eng Subs!

            Also, can anyone tell me how Darsmurf works? I for the life of me do not know how to work it.


          • mary

            Re: Span Subs

            I think this has more to do with the larger corps being more vigilant in taking down streaming sites and uploaded YT videos now.

            And of course their first targets would be english subbed ones because they’re easier to track and have a larger audience, thus, a larger “theoretical” drain on the original copyright holder’s profits.

          • girlatsea

            It was the same with Yoona’s Street, they would get their subs from DSS as well.

          • Because of Reasons

            Yup. I’ll be honest that it kind of annoys me that myasiantv and dramacool say that they get their subbed episodes out before anywhere else, and people talk about the excellent speed of their subbing, when those sites take all their subs from other sites. I mean, there are plenty of shows on myasiantv that were originally subbed for Viki and the subs say so, so obviously DC and MAT aren’t the first, the site that did the subbing is the first.

            I’ll say that I only started feeling this way now that I’ve become part of a subbing team and have come to understand how the process works. There’s a lot of time and effort involved, and it can be frustrating when sites appropriate that without credit and than claim that “their” subs are first and fastest.

          • Sue

            Dramacool deleted my comment and blocked me when I mentioned that the subs in one show were incomplete and identical to Viki’s subs. It really upset me that they blocked me from making comments.

            Lately I’ve been alternating between Viki and kdrama (now Soompi TV) because Viki has been having a lot of technical problems and their subs tend to get delayed. But the new ipad update for Soompi TV tends to get stuck in the commercials. Since I already pay for Viki I don’t want to pay for Soompi too, so I just watch commercials. But Soompi is getting stuck and I’m getting frustrated with Viki and Soompi. So Dramacool keeps calling my name, but I hate them so I can’t seem to find a solution. I also hate the idea of supporting a site that is basically stealing from others.

        • revlow

          Hi Frustrated with Span Subs,

          This is an explanation StarlaBlaise gave in another post:

          You go to the drama’s page. Click on “01” link in the english subs section. DSS Translated column means translation by dictionaries (like Goggle translate). After or during dictionary translation fans edit this. And it shows in FANS
          Edited column. So, you go to this “01” link and download drama. There’s option by sourse (DTV or IPOP or any other). 🙂

          If you haven’t already, you need to create an account.

          I found the site confusing too. I’m still learning the ropes. If I can think of any tips I’ll let you know.

    • 2.2 Noelle

      what’s dss?

      • 2.2.1 canxi

        DarkSmurf Subs

      • 2.2.2 eun


    • 2.3 Dakchigo

      On daily and weekend dramas: Thank God for KBS World. Haha.

      • 2.3.1 Ivoire

        Yes, thank goodness for KBS World, though it seems to me that the subtitling is often loose or short. I don’t speak Korean, however, I find it suspicious when the characters talk for a long time, and I only get a few words (in English, regarding what they said). It would be nice to get more detailed subtitles, imho.

    • 2.4 houstontwin

      I might be wrong but when it did a search of Bad Guys on DF, it looked like they would pick up Bad Guys at some point.

      • 2.4.1 skelly

        Don’t believe it. Dramafever puts stubs up for all sorts of shows that they have no intention of covering. They have had an entry for Queen In-Hyun’s Man for going on three years, with no show yet to appear.

      • 2.4.2 Adal

        They have a similar thing listed for “Queen In Hyun’s Man “. I thought it meant that they would eventually carry that drama. I have been waiting for over two years but haven’t watched that drama on DF.

  3. canxi

    Yeah, sometimes it can be hard finding subtitles and you want to cry. I feel a certain sense of dread when this happens with a show I really want to watch (it’s especially damning for, like, Taiwanese or Hong Kong dramas). Even the popular subtitles sites seems to only try to pick up what’s going to be/has the potential to be popular? I guess they browse around and try to see what people are talking about most? So, sometimes they don’t have a thing. Sometimes they get competitive and get rights to a drama *~EXCLUSIVELY~* which I think is silly and leaves out a huge junk of audience. It can be hard.

    Yoona’s Street didn’t have subs for a while, I think, but now it’s on track right? And I know everyone is tryna search up subs for Bad Guy right now which I’m surprised hasn’t gotten picked up because Park Hae Jin is in it and I am of the opinion that he’s quite popular now. Was I wrong? Lol, I guess you have to bombard your favorite site with recommendations sometimes.

    • 3.1 canxi

      I need to sleep, there are so many grammatical mistakes in this. Like, **chunk not junk, lmaoooo.

    • 3.2 Because of Reasons

      Yu Na’s street is a few episodes behind now; the subbing team is basically just two people these days, and each episode takes a long time because it’s such a talk-y show!

  4. Mrs. Jang guem suk

    So tell me why I was just looking to watch the new episode of Jang bori and I can’t get it anywhere all the sites I know are acting stupid …… Its is seeming more and more difficult to find sites that u can watch same day episodes as they air …… The sites I found to be the best where dramacool and viki. Those our the best ones. Same day delivery and nice quality

    • 4.1 Knookey

      Quality is lower, but I found Dramafire to be great!

  5. anais

    Try having been part of a subbing team, only to lose complete access to the dramas you’ve worked on AFTER the drama has begun.

    I’m in agreement with Javabeans & Girlfriday that this is not a move forward for Korean drama producers. I’m inclined to think they’ll regret this new trend later.

    Or at least I hope they do. Yes, I am bitter.

    • 5.1 JoAnne

      Yeah, I can think of at least a couple of times where suddenly a drama was yanked from Viki – either completely, or put on hold so that it would air episodes a certain amount of days later than the original.

      I am sure it’s a licensing thing but all that screwing around is silly, and I am pretty certain it’s not our viewing sites doing the screwing!

      We’ve become accustomed to same-day or next-day fully translated shows. That should continue. The sites I use that offer a subscription service, I buy it. And I generally watch there too; the free places are fine but I hate how things get chopped up into parts and I don’t want to have to remember which of 15 sites I’m watching a show at. Anyway, the point is – I’d pay a bit more to keep it the way it has been/improve access to more shows.

      I think there’s enough of us watching around the world that we should be considered SOMEWHAT, at least.

    • 5.2 ck1Oz

      Hi dear, * pat, pat *. Yeah it sucks.

      You know what pisses me off more? That the site that has the money to buy the right to the show- sucks big time for their subbing. Big time. If you throw the money to the company for subbing rights but turns up shit subs? It just peeves me off as a non Korean viewer.

      Namely Spring Day subbing which seriously sucks. I know what you mean re ” M”. It’s still getting done but slower.

      The thing is right… I am happy doing legal stuff and helping in a legal site in order to watch my Kdrama. But when another legal sites ” shoves elbows and knuckles ” over the competition but produces inferior goods- that’s when I say it’s trying to monopolize the market. They are ruthless businesses and it doesn’t help the average Kdrama fan.

      And oh… another thing- I cannot even watch a drama from a streaming site ( if they are having the subs) because the sole person on the Internet getting the subs doesn’t have the time to get it from both V, D and C. So they most of the time get it from the easiest source. Who doesn’t actually produce consistently good translations or makes up stuff on the go.

      There is one drama I am watching now which as so many expletives per episode. Because the subber obviously has a limited vocabulary. The character is not even saying those words- it’s appearing on screen. Do they even know the common Korean exclamations? I do not want to hear ” J Christ and G ” every episode. Ergh.

      So yeah access is restricted. Then when you have access or rather can find the show- then you can’t find good subs.

      Money money money. The 2 big guys currently paying the big bucks are the ones responsible for all this. I lay it soley on one company trying to monopolize the whole K drama whole namely the US according to them.

      Pity we can’t name names. And yes GF and DB, access is more difficult, I cannot watch any streaming shows because of the numerous ads and I’ve resorted to other methods.

      See you all from jail one day at the rate we are going.

      • 5.2.1 Anais

        See you all from jail one day at the rate we are going.

        LOL. I miss you.

        Yeah, I’m watching it legally but not necessarily getting every little nuance for some of the sageuk terms and/or very technical professional terms. Which sort of dampens the impact since those nuances are the DUN DUN that the viewers are supposed to hang onto for suspense.

        And I am turning away a bit from Korean drama as a result. Life is already hectic, so other than the one drama that I find myself dedicated to every once in a while now, I want entertainment that’s a bit easier to access (literally in terms of access as well as figuratively in terms of language). I’ve been more productive in my real life, which is a good thing. I’ve also been turning to my Amazon Prime membership, catching up on my list of to-watch films and TV shows, OR reading my backlog of novels.

        The reality is, in the 21st century, there’s more than enough that people can find easily to occupy themselves. K-Drama, by making access harder, will lose out to those alternatives.

        • ck1Oz

          Turning away? Yeah like me. I am reading more ebooks as well.

          Come hang out with me in Jan for Hyde, Jekyll, Me.

          • anais

            But it was written by the Cheongdamdong Alice writer… 🙁
            I’ll go check your pipeline because I do want to hang out with you.

      • 5.2.2 Jay

        agree agree agree… and it’s greed greed greed…

        will not resort to a socio-political indignation here but you are so right.. money is the nerve of the war as we say in French… and they are not even descent enought to provide the best product possible

        am still resorting to the old old ways like a dinosaur and filling up my external harddrive the best I can with .ass and .srt

        for posterity 😉

    • 5.3 Arishia

      Hi anais! Have you been well?

      • 5.3.1 anais

        Hi Arishia, yes, busy with work but well. I’ll touch base via Viki. 🙂

  6. Mandy

    Hmm, interesting. I’ve honestly never found it an issue to find what I want to watch. It probably has a lot to do with the fact that I’m in North America. And also, I prefer network dramas – with a bit of TvN – I usually go for mainstream which is mostly subbed in either Viki, Soompi or DramaFever. Oh and if it ever were unable in my region, I just use Hola because its a solution to all regional problems =P

    But I can totally see what you guys mean. At the end of the day, if it isn’t available, I’d move on to something else myself. A new drama fan would particularly not have the patience to look for something they aren’t so interested in seeing anyway. Back when GOF and NOF were airing, I think the comments section here were always filled with questions on how to access subs. I think if those two were subbed the way RM or 1N2D are, it would be a lot more huge and popular overseas like it was in Korea.

    Since productions earn a lot of loot from international fans, I hope they can make an effort to make it easier for fans. If Hallyu dies down, it will affect them a whole lot more than the viewers…

    • 6.1 anniebee

      Yes, it´s SO MUCH better here in the US. I am originally from germany and there you can´t use dramafever, hulu and so on – and viki has only a handful of shows I could watch from germany (and on all those free sites I get so upset by the tone some users use when they are demanding their video to be uploaded and subbed right now for no money, that it usually puts me off and I don´t want to watch that drama there). I find it especially hard to find variety shows or really anything from cable networks that I want to watch.
      And I totally agree with you and javanbeans & girlfriday – it might seem like a smart move for the people behind those networks that produce dramas and such at the moment, but in the long run people from outside korea will probably just move on. To dramas/shows/really any entertainment from other countries that fulfill the same kind of “weird/foreign/different” factor that draws a lot of people to korean dramas at first (and then of course you get stuck because they are addictive). It´s absolutely the same with K-Pop. The accessability is a JOKE in germany. And that really can´t be good for getting people to buy your stuff.

    • 6.2 dewaanifordrama

      Just a heads up about Hola…Viki won’t let you use any form of VPN to get around things…I’ve tried. I am actually live in SK now, but my Korean isn’t good enough to pick up episodes on Naver (where Koreans catch stuff streamed) and I don’t have a TV here. Some other drama sites I have had success with using Hola…but yeah…it makes it really hard to want to watch drama when you have to jump through a million hoops.

      • 6.2.1 HFS

        Not true. I was in Korea recently, and successfully used VPN Cyberghost from my hotel room to access American Viki.

        • dewaanifordrama

          I was finally about to get the VPN to work (after trying off and on for about a month). I had to do some tweaking and cookie deletion. Believe me, I tried a bunch of times and I only got it to work after I had posted here. I was just coming back today to say that I got it to work. Sorry if I offended you.

  7. stars4u

    I think I can relate to the fact that it’s harder finding subbed videos recently. I have been studying Korean so I have no problems with watching unsubbed dramas since I have a reliable source to get them. But trouble comes when I want to share the drama experience with my mom and some of my friends because then I would have to find one that is subbed. For now Dramafever and Viki are the fast ones to get access to but recently some shows are not licensed. I started watching dramas with the help of subbing teams releasing .srt subs but these days I don’t know if there are still teams doing so aside from DSS, WITHS2 was the reliable source for my .srt back in the days. On the brighter side, KBS World has been uploading past dramas they have such as My Daughter Seo-young, but after I watched it with not so good video resolution. They release subbed videos 2 weeks after it aired in Korea and Mnet also provides subs for some variety shows like Mix and Match but the fan subs are faster.
    I do hope there will be more access in the future for more content since fans who love K-dramas are growing.

    • 7.1 ck1Oz

      WITHs2 has RIP dear.

      You don’t want to know what I found out when I discovered all the ” original ” source subs from those ” streaming sites ” who purport to sub their own show- is from one of the 2 companies producing inferior subs.

      Contact me at you know where and I will give you the whole story.

  8. zimme

    when i saw this article, i can’t more

    What’s you called georestricted that’s happening in my country

    Hufttt…hope this can’t be worse, cause already in critical stage, and it’s really upsetting

  9. paper

    Living in Australia its a pain in the buttocks to try and watch streaming K-drama. Every legal site is “This video is not available in your region” for the new shows. J-drama is a bit easier as I watch some of them on crunchyroll but I’ve been doing the same as I have done for the past 10+ years. Download torrent files, download softsubs and if its a kdrama i’m going to watch a billion times i’ll end up buying the box-set.

    I have a question though for dramabeans though~ Do kdrama’s get released in Blu-ray quality box-sets? Because I haven’t been buying the ones I really want in hopes that it will be released in blu-ray 🙁 I know movies are being released in BR as I have a ton of kmovies but it would be so nice if I could watch my favourite kdrama in sparkly high definition with all the pores & imperfections visible. You can buy japanese release kdrama in BR but w.o english subs & the prices range from $150-$300+ X[

    • 9.1 gumball

      I feel your pain! I live in New Zealand, which means that I have no acces to the most popular streaming sites like Netflix and Viki. It really sucks 🙁

    • 9.2 Manin

      HAve you tried looking at yesasia? They might carry drama boxsets in blue ray though I haven’t checked. It’s the only place I know of really though :p

  10. 10 Neha

    Kdramas are easier to find (but not as easy as before). Ever since viki stopped allowing japanese dramas though I’ve pretty much been unable to find any of those (except for the most popular ones)

    • 10.1 JoAnne

      They don’t show them at all anymore? I wonder why. There’s usually 2 or 3 a year at least that I really like – I’m sure there are plenty more I’d like but never hear about!

      • 10.1.1 Neha

        When I first started on viki, there were quite a few fan channels. They just stopped suddenly, which means that not as many shows are subbed at all 🙁

        • Dramabird

          I have noticed that since September, subbing has slowed down significantly on Viki. Maybe because subbers are back in school? If that is the case, patience is called for since school should be more important 🙂

          • Neha

            I did mean just for J-dramas. I’m a QC on viki and I know I haven’t contributed because of exams though, so that’s entirely possible.

          • Anais

            I’m not sure if you mean for Jdorama specifically, but subbing has slowed down for some of the Korean shows because of region restrictions. Fewer subbers are having to shoulder more dramas, so certain shows are being subbed at a far slower rate than we’ve become used to.

        • Jay

          Viki was bought by a major japanese company a while back.. and it began many of the changes… some am sure were done to counteract the other paying site at the time from the US (you all know who am refering to, the one with subpar subs and who’ve actually taken subs initially from With2 at their beginning)

          but in revamping the site, many problems mentioned above also came upon… the market is moving fast, new players are added and changing the rules

    • 10.2 canxi

      K-dramas are relatively easy except for the occasional cable drama or just non BIG3 drama. Finding Taiwanese or Hong Kong dramas can be very difficult, though. Sometimes they aren’t subbed at all. Sometimes they are but only half-way, sometimes they are completed but all the videos are gone. Japan is a bit hard because they aren’t as into sharing as Korea is, I think. When it comes to licensing something out it seems like they’re not really into that which makes things difficult over here sometimes and you really have to dig.

      • 10.2.1 Neha

        Mandarin language shows are hard to find subs for, yes! And I’ve noticed that even the episodes that get subbed have a lot of missing subtitles. I’m told it’s because mandarin is harder to subtitle, but there’s also less interest I suppose.

        • canxi

          Yeah, I think there is less interest as well. Especially with some of the recent ones. )’:

    • 10.3 James94131

      Isn’t it ironic that after Viki got bought last year by Rakuten (Japan’s largest e-commerce company), Viki’s licenses for Japanese dramas dropped to zero.

      • 10.3.1 Neha

        Aha, that actually explains the crackdown on fan channels though.

      • 10.3.2 dmohican14

        But I’ve heard that if you have color pass, you have access to j-dramas and movies.

        • dmohican14

          Ugh, viki pass, stupid autocorrect.

          • Neha

            A few dramas and movies, but nothing recent or ongoing and not even the more popular ones really.

        • james94131

          The Viki pass allows access only to Viki’s existing miniscule library of licensed j-dramas and movies which are old and not very popular. There are basically no current shows or movies and none of the older popular shows and movies. Viki does have a full hidden library of these fully subbed older shows and movies, but for whatever reason cannot get a license to exhibit them.

  11. 11 Noelle

    Thats why DB is like my shining drama light of awesome.

  12. 12 totokoko

    I know this probably applies to few people who watch/comment on this blog, but I have to say that I’m glad I can read Chinese. I watch mostly on Dramafever, but whatever Dramafever doesn’t have, one of the Chinese websites will. They are same-day fast, too, way way faster than Dramafever for sure. The main problem here is keeping up with which websites to access. At first I used tudou. Then I used youku. Then 56. Then pptv. And now it looks like it’s time to look for another site.

    • 12.1 totokoko

      read, I mean read this blog. And for why I have to keep moving, it’s usually a region access issue.

      • 12.1.1 Y

        Yeah I do the chinese subs too. I use maplestage

        • Kandiboo

          Even more problematic than finding subs are finding reliable live streaming sites!!!!

          I am one of those with the geographical problem but thankfully am Chinese, so I can deal with Chinese subs. I’ve pretty much given up Eng subs – never available, too slow. Except dramacool if my Chinese website/app doesn’t work.

          Maplestage is very good and fast, usually available for major shows. Pptv, Tudou etc all have the same problem for me as the end subs – wrong region! If you use your phone or Mac (or android) I use qianxun (千尋) app – it will gather all the dramas from diff sites and then allow you to play it.

          Another option is one of those qvod sites requiring an program download to watch, but subs up within 3-4 hours of finishing the show

          • ladyluck

            I am in the same lucky boat. I much prefer Chinese subs too, somehow even the best English subs seems to lose something in translation. Korean borrows so many Chinese words that its much easier for Chinese subs to get the point across, especially for sagueks.

          • Anais

            @ Ladyluck,

            That would make absolute sense. Perhaps I should learn Chinese.

          • galen

            Chinese subs are an option for me, but a distant second choice, since I read Chinese at a much slower speed. -.- I end up having to rewind and pause whenever there’s too much speech going on.

    • 12.2 Rainerust

      If all else fails I turn to natnatvip. Although the quality of their videos leave much to be desired. And the videos are split into bits too. I find tudou and youku too slow, and now they started to do the georestricting thing too. Same problems apply to the Chinese apps I’ve been using to stream – some shows get yanked halfway cos of licensing and I’ll find that only ONE app carries the subbed drama and it may not come out as fast. Sigh. I’m thinking about investing in a VPN app…

      Restricted access to dramas really suck. If it’s restricted, I just…won’t end up watching it. Do they really know what that means for the future of kdramas?!

    • 12.3 katey

      I too can read Chinese so I get access to much faster releases and a wider range of dramas than if I were just restricted to searching for english subs. I use kuaishou (快手) to get my drama and variety fix. But it’s only available on android platforms (I only know how to navigate those, have not found the right version to work on a pc) so I guess it’s restrictive in another way. But it has almost everything! Except the second season of Grandpas over Flowers. 🙁

    • 12.4 James94131

      Wait till Chinese government cracks down on all these pirated Chinese sites after making deals with Korean production companies. It will happen.

      • 12.4.1 KDaddict

        Kim Soo Hyun spent a couple weeks in China after YFAS. I read on an English site (maybe it was Soompi) that he made USD18 mill from all the CFs there. I was astounded by that amount. China is no longer as poor as it once was. And Not bad for a few days work for KSH.
        On the same post, I also read that Tudou paid more for each ep than for any other K drama. I don’t remember the exact amount now, but remember being surprised by the fact that Tudou paid so much, as it’s only an internet site.
        I gather that Chinese sites owned by companies that are publicly listed pay for licences. These are the major sites that ppl are naming here: tudou, soku, etc.

      • 12.4.2 KDaddict

        OK, just read that Tudou is paying USD200,000 per ep for My Lovely Girl, becos of Rain. If they are paying this kind of money, I suppose they’ll be around and it is good news for those who can use them.

  13. 13 VoteCoolidge24

    I don’t know what the deal is but there are just some shows (dramas and otherwise [(old)YOUTHS OVER FLOWERS, I’M LOOKING AT YOU] that seemingly inexplicably get ignored by the subbing gods. Or just don’t get licensed, despite their best efforts. And then what do you do? Learn Korean? Watch with no subs and just hope you can be happy with minimal understanding of what’s on screen? Stop watching dramas?!

    I really hope things don’t get worse! I’ve enjoyed my 7 years of easy access and would hate to lose that. I don’t even mind paying to subscribe to websites like Viki and Dramafever. As long as I get my fix.

  14. 14 Stuart

    The country I live in has a habit of actually being physically omitted from infographics maps of the world, which might be why the only way I can watch any of the streaming sites is through a proxy that lets me pretend I’m in the US.

    The exception is DSS. LikeJoAnn, I’ve been helping out there on Yoona’s Street and Reset. AFAIK only DSS is subbing those shows, other sites I’ve seen offering these two have been using DSS subs. I’m very happy that DSS lets me watch w/o a proxy and to help out in return by editing the subs when I have the time.

  15. 15 kanz

    I have difficulties to find old dramas, say, older than 2009, because I’m the one who wouldn’t stream drama but download and store it in my HDD so I have to find the download link. Sometimes Youtube can help sometimes not.

    For about a year now, I download drama from my local forum and it have really huge database of dramas, variety shows, movies, etc. When I can’t find there I would download the torrents at d-addicts or searching on YT. I don’t watch through Viki, DF, or Hulu, the internet connection here is slow, I would pull my hair out. If I really like a drama, I maybe will watch live-streaming. Oh and now there’s, soompi TV on soompi,, dramafire, dramacool, etc. But I don’t like if kdrama have many parts, so I still prefer to download whole ep without getting cut in parts.

    I also rely on subtitles, but I can make subtitles now, even hardsub it, but it’s just for fun. I don’t have time to join DSS or Viki subbing team because they sub at midnight my time so it’s impossible. For weekdays dramas, esp with big stars/idols subs usually out less than 12 hours. For weekend/cable it could be longer, but I rarely watch weekend.

    Sometimes I also “find the video is not available in your region” when I access SBS acc on YT and it’s so frustrating since they usually post BTS or interviews with stars.

    Because I watch and download many dramas, my friends turn to me to copy the files. Sharing is fun, because I get to know my friends preference although our preferences sometimes not matching. I also copy the files from my friends if they have dramas/shows I want to watch.

  16. 16 Peridot

    I live in North America as well, but it seems that no new show on Viki seems to be available in my region. I have noticed that fewer shows are being readily subbed. Luckily for me, the shows I’ve really wanted to see have ended up being subbed somewhere, but I do wonder if this is the beginning of a new trend.

    Does anyone know, for example, if Tomorrow’s Cantabile is being subbed anywhere? I will keep checking the sites I normally go to; hopefully, one of them will sub it. I only wish that I could watch each episode shortly after it airs so that I could participate in the various discussion threads. If I have to wait a while to watch an episode, such participation will not be possible.

    • 16.1 canxi

      Don’t worry, I’m sure Cantabile will be everywhere–unless someone tries to nab it for an exclusive–because a lot of people will want to be watching it.

      • 16.1.1 VanillaSalt

        Tomorrow Cantabile is streaming exclusive on dramafever 🙁 Kinda annoyed by that bc they commercials every 10 minutes or so and not even ad blockers can plow through them. I don’t have money to pay either, so usually i just go to Viki or bc adblocker gets through them lol.

        • Peridot

          Yeah, I never liked DramaFever. I don’t have the money either. I guess we can keep checking other sites, such as dramacool. Gooddrama has become too annoying with pop-ups and commercials.

        • spazmo

          i was wondering about adblocker, whether it works on viki — dangit, i pay for the vikipass… did notice it blows out the kdrama/now soompi ads. good to know about dfever and adblocker not working there… i kept my subscription for one more year, because i don’t want to lose the ‘first-year’ rate….

        • Amilia

          If you have a phone or a tablet and can get the DramaFever app, they only show two commercials at the beginning and again at the end of an episode. None in between. (Unless things have changed in the few months since I bought Premium.)

      • 16.1.2 Karla

        DramaFever got TC as an “exclusive” a la “Heirs.” So it seems that will be the only place where it will be available at first.

        • Dramabird

          Might end up on Hulu then too… I’ve noticed that DF content seems to end up there.

          • revlow

            From DramaFever:

            DramaFever co-produces Tomorrow’s Cantabile with KBS

            So now they are actually “producers”?


            DramaFever also partnered with the Almond Board of California for this series, which means that almonds will appear in the first 15 episodes of the show. Becky Sereno, Manager of South Korean Marketing for the Almond Board of California, explained, “The popularity of these dramas not only in Korea but the rest of Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America is amazing. These series are incredibly successful at entertaining the global audiences that we aim to reach. Working with DramaFever provides the opportunity to position the benefits of almonds to audiences around the world through high quality storytelling on a premium, digital platform.”


          • dmohican14

            @revlow, Lol I can’t help but laugh at the almond PPL.

          • AuntieMame

            The licensed sites, partnering up with Hulu and Youtube, to show some of the dramas is another way to generate profit.

            Only Youtube has KBSWorld, which shows the drama specials, with English subs that seem fairly good. I really appreciate being able to watch the drama specials, which aren’t usually subbed by any of the licensed sites.

          • revlow

            dmohican14 and AuntieMame… I had a hard time stopping laughing, too. What a hoot!

            I used to live in Calif and the Almond Board is a big deal. Goes to show just how widespread the reach of the K-Wave is!

          • leesja

            “I really appreciate being able to watch the drama specials, which aren’t usually subbed by any of the licensed sites.”

            @AuntieMame… agree with you about these drama specials. Some are really great to watch. The writers are very clever delivering a story and developing characters all within the short time frame (normally one hour, though on occasions spanning 2 or 4 episodes).

            And with a busy life, they feed the drama fix nicely. But sometimes, oh those subs, LOL! You get some great laughs. The distribution company’s translations can certainly be… ‘interesting’!

            So, those two reason brought songbird & I back into subbing… Call us crazy, gluttons for punishment, etc. but at least we’re not up till 3am finishing one episode only then to start onto the next! Oh those heady days of torrenting and fansubbing!!

            Do I miss them? Well maybe… a little.. every now & then. ssshhh, just don’t tell anyone, lol.

        • Peridot

          Just great! I’m not sure that I want to create a DramaFever account. I never was a fan of that site.

          • AuntieMame

            Hahahaha . . . California Almond Board.

            It had always puzzled me why Eun Sang brought almonds back to Korea, as a present for her mom. It was ‘product placement’! LOL

            And, also, they filmed in an almond orchard.

          • revlow

            I just watched the 1st episode of Cantabile. Did anyone catch the almond appearance? I sure didn’t. Of course I don’t want to be playing “Where’s Waldo” while watching a drama, but I was curious so tried to pay attention. Anyone see it?

        • submonkey

          DF is one of the big reasons it’s harder to find subs. About 2 years ago they went on a rampage trying to pull content from everyone who had any competition with them. Remember the stick figure drawings here on DB for that terrible drama that shall not be named? (7th Level Civil Servant – haha) The same thing happened on DarkSmurfs and that site was only subbing. They had to divide cable shows from the major network shows and make access more “underground” to keep from getting takedown notices. Ridiculous stuff like that is what has made it so hard in the last year to find places to watch.

          • Jay

            which shows it never ends… their cash cow might actually kill the whole thing..,.

            they first started by stealing subs from others.. then crack down on anything and everything under the sun with their lawsuit or threats…

            Now they are cashing in big bucks for crappy subs, still killing others in the process…

            Producers now ? OMO can only imagine… for one, their First Award Gala was such a sham and shame of selfpromoting, all the awards went to their own Heirs… nothing much else… VIP tickets selling 1grand to attend…

            again greedy capitalism for only a few elite in the end while artistry and creativity is only viewed with how much $$$ it’s generating

            no .. you are not guessing.. am not fond of them

          • Jay

            oups 1 hundred not 1 grand ;))

          • anais

            @ Jay


    • 16.2 jubilantia

      Psst: if you get a browser extension like Hola, it will get around the region restriction on Viki (it’s how I’ve been watching Three Musketeers, not to mention Doctor Who). Unfortunately they have a looooot of ads.

      • 16.2.1 KeyLimeCheesecake

        THANKS for the tip!

      • 16.2.2 Peridot

        Yes, viki has so many ads! Are there any cons to getting a browser extension? Does it affect some of the capabilities/features of your default browser?

        • shiva

          adblock works well for me on viki!

          • spazmo

            adblock worked even on hulu!!

        • jubilantia

          Sometimes, but I have Chrome and it’s pretty easy to go in and toggle it back in the browser bar.

    • 16.3 Mimi

      Peridot – I’m in North America (US, actually) and you should be able to watch on DF without paying. I was able to access Tomorrow’s Cantabile and, believe me, I would never pay for DF. Sometimes depending on the popularity of the show, DF will limit access to non-payers by having them wait 2-3 days after the subbed episodes come available but so far it seems DF is not placing any restrictions.

  17. 17 AuntieMame

    Dwindling availability is exactly what some of us had predicted, with the advent of the licensed sites.

    While the licensed sites are great for no longer having to watch ‘underground’, it also meant that only select dramas would be available. And, those dramas are the ones that can bring in big money, for the ‘bottom line’. Not necessarily the well-executed or well-written dramas, but ones based on popularity of the cast.

    Fan-subbing didn’t have to be mindful of the ‘bottom line’ and could be more selective about quality.

    I’ve kept my hard-drives, in anticipation of the day when we sort to fan-subbing again. I’m ready to edit again, WithS2.

    There’s an ironic adjunct to all of this. Fan-subbing started as a result of the lousy subs provided by the content owners. Well, we’re right back to where we started, with the lousy subs provided by a couple of the streaming sites. Talk about sins of omission and commission. LOL

    • 17.1 KeyLimeCheesecake

      RIGHT?! I remember when I first started watching Coffee Prince on DF 2 years ago. I who knew only 4 words of Korean at the time could still tell that the subs were translating wrong. Unfortunately DF hasn’t gotten much better.

    • 17.2 maldita

      Oh how I wish WithS2 is still alive and kicking to sub newer dramas. My Korean is super mediocre, just basically a gist of years of listening to Korean songs and watching dramas, but even I would get frustrated when I know that the subs are too simplified or didn’t translate properly. 🙁

    • 17.3 anais

      @ AuntieMame – “sins of omission and comissions”


    • 17.4 gasenadi

      Auntie Mame! I’m just soooo happy to “see” you here! Hello! I’m also freaking out about the downward spiral it seems kdramas, subs and sites are taking.

      I’m also missing some of my favorite bloggers, like You-Know-Who. I feel like a Woman Scorned, Waiting for the promised blog that never arrives. (sigh)

      For the time being, I’m learning Korean and checking DSS for subs for Childless Comfort, Yoo-Na’s Street and crossing my fingers for Queen Insoo.

  18. 18 Stumomo

    My mother is also a big k-drama fan and she told me that China is beginning to crack down on shows shared on internet sites.

    • 18.1 ladyluck

      Ahhh, that explains a lot. The site I normally watch from has had all their Korean content removed, movies, variety and dramas. I think this is cyclical though, the government cracks down and then after a while they move their focus on something else. I hope anyway.

  19. 19 rochinipark

    I still use the torrent way and softsubs. Softsubs available on subscene.It seems a community of different language softsubs.
    I just don’t like streaming cause 1st off I have not upgraded to the HSBB available in Malaysia cause i’m the only internet user at home.
    Plus sometimes I watch kdramas 1episode over 2days especially on my commute to and fro work.
    Mainstream network dramas easier to find and nowadays some cable dramas.But really itching to see cable variety shows like Grandpas and Youth series but just cannot locate any softsubs. But TVN shows also available on a cable provider channel in Malaysia which I have not subscribed to.

    • 19.1 karecity

      I use the same method as you. Torrents have far better quality than the streaming sites. Once i switched from streaming to torrenting, I could never switch back!
      Also, YES to subscene. it has everything. the subs may be of dubious quality but I think if you’ve watched enough dramas you can fill in the blanks and nuances yourself.

      • 19.1.1 Anna

        Yeah, I download and use soft subs too. Being in Europe, most of the paid for streaming sites are restricted, and on the free ones the quality is abysmal. So I download. Usually I can get the episode within 24 hours of broadcast, and the subs within 36. I have become quite good at retiming subs, so if they are out of sync with the video, I sort it out myself.

        • keller

          What program do you use to retime subs? The lag in some of the ones I have drive me insane. Thanks in advance.

          • kanz

            keller, I use subtitle edit to retime and edit the subs.
            I also download and use soft subs from subscene.

          • Jo

            Aegisub… fantastic. Love it 🙂 It’s worth the small amount of time to learn how to use it, I can change 1 line or all of them, edit the text, change the font etc. Freeware (I loved it so much I donated).

          • mary

            *butts in* VLC has a built in option to advance or delay your .srt file. I think it’s in Tools > Track & Synchronization. Then you specify the milliseconds delay.

          • patinalee


            – subtitle edit- retiming tutorial here :

            -aegisub – retiming tut here:


          • Anna

            As kanz has already said, I also use subtitle edit. Very simple to use.

            Of course, you can always use the subtitle adjustment in programmes like VLC, but these are of no use to me as I never watch my downloaded kdramas on my laptop, I always watch them on my tv.

    • 19.2 Jay

      same here.. not to mention the added bonus of having them to ourselves for a lifetime or as long as the harddrive is working ;)) all worth it

  20. 20 visesten

    LOL! Old ways? I never moved on from getting raw videos as well as the synced softsubs, although admittedly streaming sites like viiki makes life easier. Sadly dramafever never worked for me except for a very short time when they did a trial period for my region, but then they shut it down so I guess it wasn’t profitable enough T____T Thanks for making this post though, ppl are recommending streaming sites that I had no idea about so I’ll definitely be checking them out and hope they won’t be georestricted!

    Btw, I’m tearing my hair off in frustration because no one is fansubbing Bad Guys and while the raw files are pretty to look at I want to know what they are talking about! So I hope you guys will continue recapping this really promising show!

    • 20.1 JoAnne

      Fan subbing is happening at DarkSmurfSubs

    • 20.2 gasenadi

      I KNOW!! I’ve learned SOO much from the comments section alone! I don’t think I’ll sleep tonight just from the exitement!

      “They” can try but I don’t think the fans will let kdrama fade away. I also have a humungous To Read list and a loooong Netflix queue, but I’m not going to let “them” get between my kdramas and me.

      I’m also saving dramas for “posterity” on my external hard drive(s) just in case and will probably learn to torrent and use soft subs, etc. while I’m at it. Thanks so much to all for the info and tutorials.

  21. 21 kikidee

    I think a lot of people also haven’t noticed that these sites have started to compete over the license. For instance Viki and (Now soompi tv? I’m so confused about that) have been battling it out. A ton of people thought and still think Three Musketeers wasn’t available in the U.S., when it just wasn’t available on Viki. Viki isn’t about to advertise someone else’s site, so it was up to viewers using word of mouth to pass along that Three Musketeers was on Now whenever I see “This show is not available in your region” on Viki, I know that actually means, “ got an exclusive license, rotten bastards.”

    • 21.1 themarchioness (Now soompi tv? I’m so confused about that) was originally created/launched by acquired in May 2014. As a result, it decided to move its K-drama streaming site to

      And that’s how turned into

      It’s a little convoluted, I know. 🙂


      • 21.1.1 John

        I was surprised to learn that AT&T , yes, that AT&T, is the behind the scenes purchaser behind the Soompi-Crunchyroll-Kdrama thing. Not sure if that’s good or bad.

        • Lizzy4e

          If At&T is involved I would say it is a bad thing.

    • 21.2 girlatsea

      KDrama (SoompiTV) was doing a really good job of securing most dramas though (and their iPad app was amazing – super HD/no ads) there was a time when they had most tvN + Big 3 dramas and they would sub them by the same night it aired. And then if you Dramafever, they had very little selection of airing dramas and then they wouldn’t have subs into a couple of days later (exclusively for premium people).

      Of course, I use soft subs either way so it didn’t affect me all that much. But I could see why subscribed users to DF were upset with them (paying to wait for subs when they get them else where, same day). And then Viki has more trouble securing licenses, so even more people would be upset.

  22. 22 Heather

    I haven’t had any trouble finding Korean dramas that I wanted to watch, though I have had trouble finding some reality shows like Korea’s Next Top Model. The ones I really get frustrated with are the Chinese, Taiwanese and other countries that aren’t as big. Even if they have a fan channel on Viki, they somehow never actually get fully subbed and I start them but can’t finish them.

    • 22.1 bloop

      You can find most Taiwanese Dramas here:


      They are usually subbed. Hope this helps.

    • 22.2 Jay

      as for Singaporean dramas, xinmsn is now using the new stream technology V.2 which you can no longer download directly.. and you need a vpn or Hola to change your origin to local Singapore to view the shows…

      unless you are a techy wizard, am just glad todou, youko are still having some available, like the one am now following Against the Tide with Chris Lee

  23. 23 mongoose22

    It’s gotten worse, I agree. I live in Canada, and kdrama (now soompi TV) started georestricting their video — and I’m a paid customer. Ultimately I didn’t raise a stink since I also subscribe to a VPN so I can get around the sadness that is living outside the US when streaming video, but I should write them a nastygram sometime. Thankfully they have a tvN deal, though, else I’d have to venture out into fansub land like I do with Yoona’s Street on JTBC.

    • 23.1 Dramabird

      I’m Canadian too 🙂 Where have you been watching Yoona’s Street?

      • 23.1.1 mongoose22

        I download the subs from Dark Smurf Subs when they’re done and then find a copy of the raw episode. Though if you’ve got an account with DSS you can use their beta stream to watch through their site, too. There’s various other sites that have ad-based streams of the show: MyAsianTV, DramaGo, EPDrama, etc., which often are using DSS’s subs.

  24. 24 August

    Ladies, timely topic as always. Thank you 🙂

    I really wanted to check out Bad Guys so I’m glad that it’s finally subbed.

    It does seem like and feel as if it is indeed becoming harder and harder to secure access to and/or find subbed Korean, Japanese, & Taiwanese dramas that maybe are less popular, on cable, or are considered old school.

    Of course, we can thank Dramafever for the limited access. They started the ball rolling with their exclusive rights claims/demands, their acquisitions of competitor sites, and with their cease and desist threats to the other various sites in the drama watching community. What we’re experiencing now (limited access and subbing) are the after effects of sites with a ride range of content like Dramacrazy, Kimchidramas, Mysoju, etc. being shutdown by Dramafever.

    Profit is their business model and all they know or care about. Dramafever is not in the business of offering access to Asian dramas simply because they enjoy them or want to share and introduce them to the global community. That’s a foreign concept for them.

    But it’s what helped deliver new fans and allowed to enjoy dramas whether they were popular, less popular, or discover little known and often forgotten gems in the past.

    • 24.1 JoAnne

      That old topic again.

      I don’t see how anyone can blame DF for this. Go to the source – the people who had the rights to sell. You cannot blame DF for taking what they can get and then enforcing their rights: they are a business.

      You CAN complain to the actual owners of the material that limiting content to one site means they have lost viewers. Of course, in the long run, if that one site has MORE viewers than the others combined, well…but of course we know that isn’t true, and hopefully they do, too.

      • 24.1.1 August

        Dramafever’s business strategy started the chain of events which as consumers has left us with with limited access and less content to peruse. Yes, Dramafever is a legitimate business that pays money for the exclusive rights to air certain shows. However, some of their business practices can be described as monopolistic and having a negative impact and influence in the market place for tv content/kdrama shows.

        • Ex DF Subscriber

          I loved DF back in the days when they played nice in the community and I happily subscribed to their services. But when the big corporate money came in and DF started acting like a hateful second lead trying to obliterate all the competition (including former allies), I bailed.

          I realize that the prob. is much bigger than DF, but that doesn’t stop me from resenting DF for all the damage they’ve done to the community (like shutting down some of the best fansubbers). I also resent them for getting exclusive rights to content, but not providing access to that content to much of the world. Their exclusives shouldn’t be so exclusive.

          • anais

            “DF started acting like a hateful second lead trying to obliterate all the competition…”


            Love it!

            Anyhow, I bailed DF for the same reason. DF, I hope you’re now seriously ruing your mistake, now that it’s come to bite you on your own ass.

          • FGB4877

            At a certain point, I just couldn’t watch a single Drama on DramaFever, so I turned to greener pastures.

            Their unpaid service is sluggish at best, and limited in content. In my country Internet doesn’t have a high speed to start with, so a direct streaming is out of question.

            Anyway, thanks DG and GF for creating this space for us and thanks to this community.

      • 24.1.2 Orion

        Except the rise of DF and apparently its aggressive shutdown of other places screwed people over it had no right to take entertainment away from, given they have no legal and affordable access to it.

        Meaning we unworthy ones in Europe and other places lost many good sites, sites which used to be our only solid way of enjoying this entertainment, because the Korean side (through DF) wanted to sell to North America.

        Meaning even if it’s not their fault and they are a business, their rise was detrimental to people the site does not even provide for, who might feel a bit pissed about that.

        So I do understand the frustration, but it does ultimately fall on the content creators who place boundaries, but do not provide to those outside of them. But they are the ones losing potential, ready and willing to pay customers, so it’s their loss in the long run. Hopefully, they will realize that some day.

        • FGB4877

          Hello and sorry to bear bad news, but the content creators in Korea don’t pay much attention to the long run but the short one. Tamra the Island and more recently Surpluss Princess were victims of this short-sighted philosopy.

      • 24.1.3 eJc

        Even though, it’s a vaild point that DF is a business and has the legal right to execute its rights given by the content owner, the Korean networks, I still want to point out that this is two way road. Meaning you cannot just say, eventually it’s the fault of the networks for restricted access. Because not only the Korean networks could have asked for exclusive streaming rights on DF, but more likely DF tried to get the competitors out of business by demanding to have this rights exclusively for a higher fee. Even more so, if you take into account what business practices DF has executed and what they have done to the whole kdrama community like others here have already pointed out. DF has much more to loose if more legal (or illegal) competition is widely spread on the market with the same content but at a higher quality (better and faster subs!). Therefore, DF is in need of exclusive content. Whereas the networks just want to sell at the highest price. If DF offers that, why not take it? Very shortsighted, though!!! I don’t say that this is the way only DF works, but they have get themselves notorious for their aggressiv business behavior.

        At the end of the day it is about money for both sides (network vs. streaming site) and the best negotiation terms they can get out of each other. And what pisses me of is that it’s not about us, the international viewers, but solely about money. We’re left out!

        I personally tried everything, except torrenting, because I live in Germany where even most of the general music content on YT is restricted. To get access here legally is really hard. So, yes, I tried to use VPN and created accounts on legal sites. And from my experience DF has not the best subs. They confuse me at times. And with all the ads popping up every 8 min or so (adblock doesn’t work), I was quite annoyed. Then I discovered Viki. I loved it! Legal, fast and an awesome community!!! (Besides the increasing number of Spanish comments which excluded everyone else) Everthing was fine on Viki until VPN didn’t work for me anymore. What to do? In the end I’m forced to use sites I don’t want to use for my favorite shows. Or to quite dramas all together.

        It can’t be the goal of either the legal streaming sites nor the networks that an increasingly small number of people can have access (for a higher fee?) to their contents. It doesn’t serve anybody in the long run. It’s just creates piracy!

        Please, work it out together. Don’t exclude and restrict, but include more viewers to a braoder content. Also, let Europeans and other non US people be a legal part of this awesome community

      • 24.1.4 langdon813

        Dramafever is directly responsible for shutting down X’s website Dramatic, for absolutely no reason might I add, because we only subbed dramas that no other fansubbing site would touch (I Live In Cheomdamdong, for example, which I will apparently never get to finish now). They are the reason we stopped subbing altogether. If I had a better option than DF believe me I would choose it. I’ll only watch something on DF if it’s not available anywhere else. Yes, I’m very very bitter.

        • girlatsea

          I get so bitter every time I remember the I Live in Cheongdamdong subs debacle. It’s so depressing how I’ll never be able to finish it without understanding that wonderful script.

          I actually remember asking DF to sub it and I got referred to Cheongdamdong Alice (I think I remember laugh/crying). Maybe one day my Korean language skills will get passed the intermediate level and I won’t need the damn subs.

        • dewaanifordrama

          When I think of all the drama wisdom and snarkiness lost from Dramatic, it makes me cry. DF though is like the McDonald’s of K-drama watching. Viki and the others who are going corporate all have major issues.

        • gasenadi

          I miss X SOOOOO much. X…, long life and health, wherever you are.

          Thanks, again, db, for allowing fans to vent. Hopefully, the honchos will come to their senses.

    • 24.2 piggybackrider

      The international kdrama community is becoming a victim of its own success. Because kdrama viewing has grown exponentially in recent years sites such as Dramafever is now trying to cash in. What they and other similar sites will increasing try to do is ensure exclusivity.

      A good example of this trend is Dramafever investing in the upcoming Nodame Cantabile remake. (They also invested in Heirs.) In doing so they secure exclusive rights for North America (as they also did with Heirs). Exclusivity drives subscriptions, and I think we can be sure to see much more competition for exclusive licensing deals in the future. The days of finding everything in one place is over.

      Unless, of course, that place is Google!

      • 24.2.1 HFS

        I think DF would have been better off securing a license to the show (but not an exclusive license) and then acquiring the rights to sell stickers, pictures, toys, and other physical goods in their gift shop. Yesasia is too darn expensive.

    • 24.3 dewaanifordrama

      Rather blame the DMCA and the corporatisation of the Internet. Large companies who are completely out of touch with who actually watches television are looking to make a quick buck. DF, Viki, any legal streaming site have to follow DMCA regulations and the people in the system. They are just part of the system. If you really care about creating fairer Internet access, then you have to go after FCC rulings etc. that limit Internet access and that restrict international film and television access. The FCC is basically single-handedly trying to break the Internet with their stupid fast lanes. So don’t blame DF or Viki (because they are also corporate). The corporations are the new rich class, and human beings are the proletariat, for want of better terminology.

      • 24.3.1 Marina

        Yep. You nailed it. FCC is to blame not the free market. Do you think those government bureaucrats give a rat about what we want to watch and how deprived we feel? They don’t.

        • anais

          Pwahahahaha. FCC? The free market is what drove the DMCA.

          • dewaanifordrama

            The free market is a scam, but it is what is driving the FCC as well these days. The current chairman of the FCC is a former cable industry lobbyist. So the DMCA, FCC, and the free market are all in bed together screwing the customers over, and in then end themselves.

    • 24.4 August

      Why it matters…FYI:

      DramaFever, the Next Digital Video M&A Mega-Deal?
      Here’s Why (“Korean Drama” Matters)

  25. 25 whatis

    I primarily watch dramas with Chinese subtitles ’cause they are subbed very quickly. Almost within 12 hours of the show’s airing, the subs are available and up online. I haven’t had the problem where I couldn’t find the Chinese subs for stuff I wanted to watch… and may it never happen!!!

    My biggest hurdle is finding OLD dramas subtitled. I’m 100% sure they’re out there but they’re either made private, or I’d have to join a forum and earn points in order to see the links, etc etc etc.

    • 25.1 jw

      I find quite a lot of old Korean and Japanese dramas subbed on dramafire too. That’s where I watched Lucky Seven etc.

    • 25.2 Kandiboo

      If you don’t mind d/ling the app/program req to watch the dramas try (or sth similar). Site ads, but lots of old dramas. Sometimes it’s a bit wacky though and I recommend saving the files on an external drive (it downloads onto your commuputer, I think it’s like torrent)

  26. 26 jw

    Hello, I’m watching my dramas on Dramafire. How come it doesn’t seem to be popular here? Hardly anyone mentions that. I have georestrictions on a lot of sites, but so far so good on dramafire for me. Most of the shows I want to watch are there, including some of the latest animes, Japanese and Taiwanese dramas too.

    No youths over flowers though 🙁

    • 26.1 VanillaSalt

      Yes! i go on dramafire for jdramas and they have most of what i want there, but the pop up ads kinda bug but hey w/e it’s free what can ya do haha!

    • 26.2 revlow

      I use Dramafire from time to time, but the video quality isn’t as good as others.

      In case you missed it, you can see Youth Over Flowers here:

  27. 27 wonhwa

    As one of the odd people who loves long sageuks, it was frustrating not to be able to find subs for Jeong Do Jeon this year, even though it was getting rave reviews (and apparently airing with English subs in some US markets on KBS World). The first k-drama I encountered was several episodes of Age of Warriors airing on an independent public television station in Philadelphia, but I’ve never been able to find a streaming version of the complete show on any site, licensed or not.

    • 27.1 jamesX

      Yes!! I’m a big fan of Jo Jae-Hyun and really wanted to see Jeong Do Jeon but never found subs

    • 27.2 Ela

      Age of Warriors is complete on

      • 27.2.1 wonhwa


  28. 28 jubilantia

    I haven’t had as much time lately for dramas, but I wanted to try Three Musketeers and had a hell of a time finding it.

    PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT: You can get around the region thing if you use a browser extension like Hola to fool the site into thinking your computer is in a different country, which I ended up doing for Three Musketeers on Viki.

    I’ve come to trust Dramafever, and I’m bummed it let me down with that one. I guess it’s getting competition with other sites, or they’re getting complacent and not hammering out the negotiations soon enough. I was watching High School King on Good Drama, because it was the only place I could find it.

    I’ve been seeing this happen a lot with American streaming, too. Shows and movies will be pulled off Netflix (Battlestaaaar!) and then maybe put on Hulu (which has ads even if you pay- ugh) or Amazon. They’re rarely on more than one service at once, so you have to commit and pay for all three- and even then not everything is available. It hurts everyone when it’s not available everywhere. I wish they would get everything hammered out so you could pick a streaming service and stick with it.

    • 28.1 Adal

      Three Musketeers can be found at, for free with a lot of ads, this is for the US though. Was the reason why I logged onto the site in the first place. Anybody know where I can watch English subbed versions of The Return of Superman? It’s a variety show that is too cute for words and I’m only able to follow it on news sites and a few blogs.

      • 28.1.1 mysticmalady

        Kbsworld’s youtube channel is where I normally get my fix of variety shows produced by kbs (including Return of Superman & 1n2d). The only issue is that the subbed episode only comes out 3wks after the raw episode broadcasted in it’s a good option if you don’t mind the delay. Their subs are pretty decent too (I think) and you can even watch kbsworld live for stuff that they don’t put onto their YouTube page after broadcast…

        • Adal

          Thanks! I’ll check it out.

      • 28.1.2 Newbie

        It’s subbed on YT by the KBS World Channel.

        • Newbie

          Oops, should have refreshed my page.

          • revlow

            LOL. Boy I’ve made that mistake, too!

        • Adal

          Thanks. I’ll definitely check it out.

      • 28.1.3 Because of Reasons

        I’ve never encountered an ad on; every now and then I see a little hiccup in the video where I assume an ad is supposed to go, but I have an adblocker extension installed for Firefox, so I get to watch ad-free. It’s great!

        • panda

          I never got adds with but I’m now getting with soompitv

    • 28.2 revlow

      Hi jubilantia,

      I love Good Drama–can find almost anything there–but I try other sites first because the video quality is usually better.

      Besides Viki and DramaFever I check:

      * Kdrama (now called soompi TV)
      * — can find a lot of things here I can’t find elsewhere

      Those are my 1st choices. (King of High School was available at both.)

      After that I’ll check:

      * DramaBay
      * Sensen
      * epdrama
      * DramaCool
      * DramaFire

      But I have to say I’ve had a few buggy problems at times with these.

      There are other sites, but for now I’ve whittled it down to these. I try to balance availability, video quality, and readability of subs–some are just atrocious!

      And then of course there’s Good Drama. That still is my go-to when I want to find older Kdramas and movies.

      Other people have pointed out and I’m just getting used to that. It seems a lot of the subs start from there.

      Thanks for the tip about Hola. I’m going to try it! 🙂

      • 28.2.1 revlow

        Oh, realized I could have been more clear…

        There are other sites, but for now I’ve whittled it down to these. I try to balance availability, video quality, and readability of subs–some are just atrocious!

        Actually there are 2 things I look for in subs:

        1) The “quality” of the subs? What do I know…I don’t speak Korean. Still sometimes I get a sense that one might be better than the other. Or more poetic? Or?

        2) The readability. Fonts, size, colors. That’s what I meant by some are just atrocious.

        Hope this helps.

        • jubilantia

          Thanks a bunch! I haven’t devoted as much time lately to finding the best sites; this is definitely good. I pay for DF, but if they aren’t going to license things, I have to go somewhere else.

        • JMK

          I try not to watch DF because of the ‘westernization’ of the subs that is so prevalent. I grates on my nerves for “Oppa!” to be translated as “Hey Dude!” or “(Character’s name)!”. That takes the’ Korean’ out of Kdramas, which I think is so important to appreciating the genre.

          • jubilantia

            They do that? Most of the ones I see they just write “Oppa”, but I haven’t watched all of them by any stretch of the imagination.

    • 28.3 dewaanifordrama

      How did you get Hola to work for Viki? I haven’t had any luck with it *sigh* it somehow knows that I am using a VPN.

      • 28.3.1 DramAddict

        i use this adds on on fire fox to by pass georestriction on viki but it doesn’t work for Dramafever though

        but i can access DF on android using SuperVPN which you can find on playstore

      • 28.3.2 revlow

        I installed the Chrome plugin, but I didn’t have any luck at Viki either.


        • jubilantia

          On Hola, you can choose what country you’re “viewing” it from, so you might try switching to a different one? I’m currently “in” England.

        • DramAddict

          maybe you should try Firefox
          i just tried Anonymox plugin on chrome and i can access regionally restricted show but it is annoying in comparison to the add on on firefox
          in firefox you can control the location of each tab
          you should try viewing viki on firefox that is what i do and use chrome for the rest of my online activity

          Good Luck

        • DramAddict

          and some one mentioned a chrome plugin called zenmate.
          i tried it and it can bypass georestertction on both viki and drama fever .
          and it much better than Anonymox.

      • 28.3.3 jubilantia

        Sometimes you can switch to a different VPN, or try it from a different country. I’m currently running one from Great Britain, and it seems to be working.

  29. 29 VanillaSalt

    Anyone remember or Mysoju? They used to have almost everything and a lot of kmovies that are unavalible on the legal sites or weren’t subbed elsewhere. Mysoju had A LOT of movies and jdrama, but sadly both are gone bc they were idk illegal i guess? I miss them

    • 29.1 momo

      It’s my guess that Dramafever had a lot to do with sites like MySoju, etc. disappearing. They’re pushing the legal thing to a point that’s really bullying. And I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that they are the ones behind the “not available in your region”.

    • 29.2 parny

      Yes I remember kimchidrama & mysoju cos those were the only sources I could watch kdrama on. I love those 2 sites b4 it got shut down. Here in New Zealand we have georestriction which suck balls. And being reliant on english sub makes it even harder to find dramas to watch. And we dont have KBS world or any other korean channels on our paid tv. So my life has been dramaless (pun intended). Hehe! 😜 Reading dramabeans recaps has gotten me through it though. 😁

    • 29.3 jubilantia

      Aaaaah, I miss them so much. I sort of understand DF’s purge, but those ones had a tooon of old dramas and movies that the licensed sites will probably never get.

    • 29.4 pogo

      RIP to Mysoju, kimchidrama and Dramacrazy – they made it a lot easier for those of us who were geo-blocked back in the day.

      I could stand Mysoju going down, but dramacrazy, that really hurt.

      • 29.4.1 VanillaSalt

        omg dramacrazy is gone too? I didn’t even know till now, how depressing! I guess it’s only a matter of time till Dramafire is gone too.

    • 29.5 lucertola

      Yes, I miss Mysoju, Dramacrazy in it’s original shape and kimchidrama too. And I miss especially Jdrama live journal community. At that time you could find everything on one web site.

      I think the best would be a combination of nowadays options (viki, DSS, etc.) with the old free access sites for all East Asian dramas, not only Korean.
      Crossing fingers that this will be the future development for it.

      Side note: I am disappointed in Japan because they still don’t have YT sites as KBS World which goal is to promote Hallyu wave, and that they don’t let their music/shows/etc. to be available for free on YT channels.

    • 29.6 Fab

      Those were the days!
      My addiction started with, but the viki videos they had were incredibly bad or unavailable. I spent long nights looking for my fix because I was marathoning every drama, and that’s how I discovered mysoju, dramacrazy(at some it got really crazy- it was bad for you computer) and kimchidrama.

      • 29.6.1 DramAddict

        I remember Mysoju, it was my first site i use to watch kdrama, when i used to marathon drama.
        it had a wide collection of Asian movies and drama.
        i’m sad that it is gone.

    • 29.7 Thandy

      I literally wanted to cry and was so upset when dramacazy and mysoju, dramacrazy especially went down, I was able to get my fix of kdrama and jdrama with them plus they had older dramas that I had never watched before on there, it was like running around in a cadystore. It was horrible when they disappeared.

    • 29.8 a_diva

      dramacrazy is back. instead of (dot) com it’s (dot) eu now.

      it’s been back for a while now.

      • 29.8.1 HFS

        Thanks!! I missed them!

    • 29.9 Bex

      Mysoju was my first drama streaming site (before that I had watched dramas on youtube and veoh) I used to watch Jdrama’s and taiwanese dramas there, then like you said they went down and never came back.

  30. 30 Redfeather

    It’s not difficult for Americans since they have Hulu, Netflix, Viki, Dramafever and all that online TV crap, but people everywhere else have to resort to non-legal streaming websites or torrents to be able to watch drama. I live in Malaysia, which is closer to Korea, but I can’t even watch My Lovely Girl or Bad Guys without having to search rigorously on the Internet for the episode AND the subs.

    • 30.1 Anju

      Hey, you know what helps? I live in Korea, so it’s really hard to get around most of those pesky blockers and censorship. But with Google Chrome, some friends suggested Hola, and I can choose what country I want my computer to pose as (like, how some British region-specific sites I’d use aren’t available in the US, so I want to parade as that to watch whatever Britshow I like, you know?).

      Then I can go onto those sites! Viki is still awful to load, but I use Gooddrama and DramaGo to watch some things.

    • 30.2 OdessaJones

      Yeah, I think in the US we’ve got great access, compared to the folks I’m hearing weighing in from other countries.

      Have you tried using a “cloaking” extension that allows you to “hide” what country you’re in? I use Google Chrome as my browser, with the extension Zen Mate. Zen Mate allows you to choose what country you want it to look like you’re in. For instance, I’m in the States but I watched the winter Olympics on the BBC–the BBC blocked traffic from the States, but with my extension I could make it look like I was from another country, where the Beeb wasn’t blocked.

      Someone also mentioned Hola as a good cloaking extension. Worth trying these two, and any others available to you on your browser.

  31. 31 Mommai

    Accessibility (a little more on the legal side) is the biggest reason I’m not into Japanese dramas. I would LOVE to watch some, but Japan seems to have a tighter grip on its shows. Maybe someday they’ll take a hint from the Hallyu wave?

    • 31.1 jubilantia

      I’ve seen a couple on Dramafever, but they’re mostly older ones, with just a couple new ones thrown in. They were my drama gateway, with Hana Yori Dango (Japanese Boys Before Flowers) and Gokusen (Gangster Teacher) still being my first and nostalgic favorites. Unfortunately, I’ve fallen quite behind because of the aforementioned accessibility. It’s just easier to watch K-dramas nowadays.

  32. 32 clover

    It is much easier to find Korean and Chinese dramas in North America. But it is so hard to find old or new J-Dramas. You have to really hunt around for Ouran Host Club or Perfect Girl Evolution, or anything really.

    Would love to find older (2006 and back) subtitled Korean or any other dramas.

    • 32.1 jubilantia

      The Ouran anime is on Netflix, but they did do a pretty good job with the live-action. I wish the same things, although I lean more towards ones like BOSS, Nodame Cantabile, and Nobuta wo. Produce.

      • 32.1.1 Anju

        The live-action for Ouran cracks me up! Tamaki looked awfully familiar, until I realized that it was the aura-seeing guy from Hana Kimi!


        • jubilantia

          He’s so great. I think he’s in a couple other things, but I can’t think of them off the top of my head. I was really surprised how well they made Ouran work in live action. I don’t think Honey translated very well, but it was tongue-in-cheek enough that you didn’t care.

  33. 33 Evelia

    I used to go to Viki but they do not have the dramas that I want to see. It is easier since there are sites that have the episodes subs. I go to dramafire or to other websites. I have encounter the can’t access video because of the region mostly in Viki.

  34. 34 Autumnleaves

    Chinese subs are always so much faster, I am actually glad I studied Mandarin for once. Heh.

    • 34.1 bjharm

      agreed sadly in not reverse frankly those that watch Korean drama have it very good compared to those that would like to watch chinese drama with english subs.
      It to be noted that a lot on subs that come out are in fact not translated from the Korean but they use the chinese subs made off the Korean drama lol

  35. 35 QT765

    I actually started watching dramas in Veoh, be it k-drama or j-drama but over time many websites are very hard to access unless you live in the US. Also there’s been a decline in fan subs like SARS fan sub which was really great back in the day(?) when it was uploaded online but when it only accessible to people who is blessed with high speed internet. In the end I relied to websites who upload dramas online instead of having to download it

  36. 36 coby

    I remember chipping in for a DVD and had to do draw lots to determine who gets to view it first! and reproduce it as well…

    Yea, I did that swapping external HDs too!

    Way way back I am watching through mysoju. Right now I am enjoying downloading the torrents in d-addicts and getting the subs from subscene and darksmurfs.

    lessons learned:
    If there’s a will there’s a way!
    Sharing is caring!

  37. 37 cha

    I wish they would sub more variety shows 🙁

  38. 38 Ashley

    Whats funny is that a lot of times shows on viki and other sites are not licensed to be views in Korea. That means foreigners living there can watch the shows live, but cannot watch them on the internet subbed so they can understand what is going on.

    • 38.1 PL

      At least they can learn Korean and watch them live! I’ve tried to catch the live broadcasts online but nowadays you need an Alien registration card or a Korean identity card to register for an account.

  39. 39 D

    I really miss the days of soft subs and downloading raws etc…(I don’t use DSS which I find to be often inaccurate) ….I’m a fan of Viki which has better quality sub’s than other sites but Viki doesn’t seem to get as much content anymore as Dramafever …and I has become increasingly harder to find any alternatives to these major streaming sites including Hulu…just for the better subs I wish sites WIThS would come back

  40. 40 Melbeanie

    I became a kdrama addict when I was still in the Philippines where I had CDs and DVDs copied from my cousin’s archive. Yes, I had 23 CDs of Goong, etc. Luckily, DVDs are already available when I watched Jumong (just imagine, 81 CDs!)! Now that I’ve said that, there is still Kim Myung Min’s Lee Shoon Shin (or something like that) DVDs that I haven’t watched and I couldn’t bring them here in Australia for fear of being fined.

    Back then, I would watch the current dramas at without any problems. Then I moved here in Oz where internet fees are humongous (and where mysoju is not available). But I was able to watch from another site which I could not remember (probably dramacrazy – dramafever and vikii were not available back then, I’m not so sure now). Watching through the internet cost me $650! Good lord, and that’s for watching Glory Jane which I didn’t even finish! I was still a student then and was just renting a room so I didn’t have a “proper” internet connection. I just used my phone for my wifi which was the biggest mistake I have ever made. Yes, bigger than watching Five Fingers seriously (I now have a clear understanding of what makjang really is, big thanks, Five Fingers! The title should have been a giveaway but it’s Joo Ji Hoon’s, what can I say? Yup, I blindly followed the face…).

    So that “tragic” incident straightened my twisted addiction (I would watch kdramas in the library until closing time but could not wait for the next episode so I would watch it using my phone’s wifi, cost be damned, but when I saw the bill, well, that’s an eye-opener, to say it mildly, uh, an eye-popper is more apt, actually).

    Yes, I now have four external drives full of Korean Dramas from my wonderful cousin. I don’t have the heart to delete any dramas (even if they’re crappy) so my external drives don’t really move back and forth. There’s always a new external drive each time. With my situation, I could only read recaps of currently-being-aired dramas and watch them when someone would come over to bring the external drive or if I have my holidays back in my country. Would you believe, I just finished Gentleman’s Dignity? I know, it’s so Jurassic but these external drives work wonders for my sanity as I could always “review” my favourite dramas or scenes or just ogle at Lee Kang To or Lee Jae Ha or Choi Han Kyul mwa ha ha! It just comes late, that’s all so I’d look like the first photo when I’m waiting for my external drive to arrive, then if my cousin would include unfinished dramas and I’m on the last episode she sent, I’d be like Sung Shi Won on that last photo, lol!

    • 40.1 Jo

      Dramafever & Viki still restricted, there are no legal ways of getting Kdrama here in Oz. Torrent is about to be restricted here too. There are ways around it, Hola Unblocker or a VPN (for a monthly fee), for streaming. VPN for torrenting. Not gonna help us when it come to diminishing subs though 🙁

    • 40.2 OdessaJones

      Any luck from Oz using “cloaking devices”? I’m lucky to be in the States, but I learned this trick for watching the BBC online: Google Chrome has a few good extensions that allow you to cloak your location. Hola and ZenMate are the best known. They work well and offer a few possibilities (ex., you can pretend you’re in New York, Germany, etc.)

  41. 41 earthna

    Actually, dramas are not too hard to find (except the cable ones) but variery shows that are subbedare very rare. I mean, Grandpas Over Flowers!!! I still haven’t found anything that works. Well, finding subbed videos has always been a task so I did my best to learn Korean, even just by myself, so I dont need to completely rely on subbed videos. I still need my dramas so just needed to do whatever I can.

    • 41.1 conan

      Yes! This too! I’ve only watched Noonas Over Flowers since they’re the only ones I could find. But even them I had to jump through so many hoops to watch. tvN selling their stuff to Hulu is not looking so good for non-US fans.

    • 41.2 karecity

      I watch GOF using Hulu. Hulu is only available in the US but there’s a plug-in called Hola that allows you to switch your IP to any country you want. You have to get through the annoying ads though.

    • 41.3 Mimi

      I second karecity about Hulu for Grandpas (and Noonas) Over Flowers. However be aware that not everything is translated. It helps if you know some Korean to fill in the gaps, though enough is translated to get a grasp. Also, I read somewhere that TVN provides the translation, though I don’t understand why the translation are not more thorough.

  42. 42 Joe

    Japanese News video⇒

    A 52 year old unemployed Japanese man was arrest by the Japanese police cyber crime unit for uploading 2600 videos of sports programs and Fuji TV’s dramas illegally and posting the videos to a video posting site of France without permission. He was arrested on suspicion of violation of Japan’s copyright laws. Feel so sad.

  43. 43 JoyBells

    Yes,its becoming a bit difficult these past years. Sites like “mysoju” i used to frequent when i got into Kdrama no longer work.
    I wouldn’t mind paying to watch dramas in sites live Dramafever but the problem is they don’t work in my country. 🙁

  44. 44 conan

    I actually have more trouble finding movies, but that’s a given. Movies are by nature restricted, and since it’s not as heavily fan-based as dramas, a lot of the Korean movies I want to watch are most often unavailable and/or unsubbed. Note to self: start learning Korean seriously.

    In terms of dramas, there was a moment a couple years ago when the Dramafever shitstorm of shutting down everything made it difficult to watch (or at the time download) my favorite dramas. These days, those free, non-georestricted sites are quite easy to come across (I have a favorite) which makes me a happy camper. Yes, I’m not watching from an “official” drama source, but since those can’t be watched legally from my country anyways, I don’t care.

    Although, there have been some shows that are exclusive to Hulu and I can’t, for the life of me, watch from there no matter what kind of VPN/proxy server I try. It sucks. Georestriction is still new-ish but as of now it’s not looking so good.

    • 44.1 karecity

      I find most of my movies at asiatorrents. They usually come with english subs, but if the file has no subs, I’ll try subscene, which carries almost everything.

    • 44.2 kanz

      If it’s movie, I will go to and they usually already sub it. Or search the torrent and download the subs.

  45. 45 KeyLimeCheesecake

    I do not miss downloading torrents and softsubs. Streaming is the way to go. I do miss all-in one sites though. Like Dramacrazy and Animecrazy. Now you have to search around for all the content you want to access. I have been lucky enough to be able to find everything I have wanted to see for now except Biscuit Teacher Star Candy with decent english subs. There is a version on YouTube, but all the episodes aren’t there. Any help guys?

    • 45.1 revlow

      I watched it at Good Drama. There it’s called “Hello My Teacher”.

    • 45.2 dkaoru

      I was looking for Biscuit Teacher too after reading girlfriday recommendation to javabeans. It is sometimes listed as “Hello Teacher”. I found it from Dramania app

  46. 46 alcoholicbubbletea

    hmm, no one is watching on or dramacool? i mean theyre not the best since the clips arent HD but according to the internet gods i live in narnia so theyre my best options.

    or maybe i should buy a VPN for dramafever access. sigh.

    • 46.1 Lizzy4e

      I live in the US and watch gooddrama all the time. Their android app for tablet and cell is the bomb.

      I download the 3 or 4 segments of a show and the app stitches them together with a tiny hiccup. and because it is downloaded there is no buffer wheel.

      Viki used to be my goto but between lack of content, site glitches, and all the subbers going back to school it is no worth the effort.

      And do not get me started on those slash and burn Huns over at Dramafever. (joy sucking party poopers)

      Okay, to be fair, gooddrama does not do their own subs, as far as I can tell they steal them, and if I knew where they were coming from I would watch there instead.

  47. 47 Aly

    I can’t watch dramas on Viki or DramaFever because “It’s not available in your region”. -___- So annoying!

    Right now the «easiest» way I have of watching dramas is merely one or two streaming sites which divide each episode into 4 or 7 parts… and are FILLED with ads.

    Ever since MU went down, it’s become harder and harder to watch dramas. It’s a huge step backwards.

    At least KBS is making an effort by putting a few dramas on its KBS World YouTube channel.

  48. 48 CutiieAngiie

    And this is one of the reasons why I am currently learning Korean lol.
    Seriously, I just can’t stand it anymore.

    This past summer, I had such a big love for Real Men and even decided to screw it all and watch it in raw for a couple of episodes but because I couldn’t understand a damn thing, I just gave up and gosh’, it was so heartbreaking.

    And now, I also have to deal with not finding Bad Guy with subs. I HATE YOU WORLD. SERIOUSLY !
    No but I am grateful for subbers’ works though. If it wasn’t for them, I would be having a better social life, sure but without any joys in it … LMAO. No but yeaap’, people are subbing much faster than in the past so it’s pretty amazing but yeap’, it’s so annoying to have the “video is not available in your region”. It’s the first time of my life that I am regretting living in France lol.

  49. 49 lostexpression7

    Been there, done it all.

    Torrenting (with the hj split thing), srt files, withs2, haru subs etc
    I even used ti email strangers asking for subs lollll.
    Sugoideas (tdrama)
    Mysoju, dramacrazy, veoh, dailymotion

    Ah life back then.

    These days, since i live in america
    Hulu, dramafever, viki, netflix carry what i want mostly.
    Myasiantv if i cant find it…
    Or youtube.
    Youtube actually has a lot of full ep qith eng sub old dramas on there (i watch ones from japan)

    The geo restriction thing has gotten to me and now im taking korean at school.. yeah.

  50. 50 dkaoru

    agreed with many comments here. It’s harder for people outside north america to access eng sub. Dramas are not so bad, it’s variety shows and movies that are a pain in the a$$. I can’t find eng sub for Witch hunt and I really want to watch Sung Shi Kyung in it.

    What i’ve been doing is downloading the dramas from the Dramania app (i think it’s only for android but i could be wrong) and streaming from

    I hope kdrama is not going the way jdrama did. I was an avid jdrama and anime watcher and then basically lost interest because at some point they made it so difficult to access. Now it’s not as bad but I’ve already said goodbye to them. I hope i won’t have to say bye bye to kdrama.

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