Professor of Law
National Police University
ODR has developed as a new method of alternative dispute
resolution with rapidly developing internet technology in
Korean E-Commerce Mediation Committee (ECMC)
to provide both traditional ADR and ODR service to resolve
mainly e-commerce disputes
Korean Internet Address Dispute Resolution Committee
(KIDRC). ---ODR service which is similar to UDRP of global
standard to resolve domain name disputes only.
In addition, the Supreme Court of Korea is to introduce
Electronic Filing at Korean courts’ system
2. Korean E-Commerce Mediation Committee
In April 2000 the ECMC launched ODR services
Panel of 50 mediators
A case manager of its secretariat manages a basic
plan for the mediation process.
The result of mediation is published annually by the
In 2008 ECMC handled 3,631 cases of e-commerce disputes by
mediation, among which B2C disputes account for 75.1 %, C2C for
20.6% and B2B for 3.1%.
Fig. 1. Classification of Disputes handled by ECMC (unit: number of case)
of Withdrawal Not Settled Settled
2005 12,034 1,750 664 188 898
2006 11,054 1,991 560 221 1,210
2007 11,067 2,668 966 260 1,442
2008 10,696 3,631 1,118 389 2,124
The causes of major complaints in 2008
Cancellation of Contract due to deliveries of defective products or refusal of
refunds for products (53.3%)
Delayed delivery (12.3%)
Online shopping malls were closed (0.9%)
Causes of E-commerce Disputes (2008)
Cancellation of Contract
Closing of Shopping mall
In 2008 ECMC handled following sort of disputes:
clothes & shoes (37.1%), cosmetics & others (9.5%), computer appliances (9.1%),
home electronics (8.3%) and online games (7.3%), etc.
Clothes & Shoes
83 (3%) 69 (2%)
Cosmetics & Others
Computers & Communication appliances
118 (4%) Home Electronic & Camera
264 (9%) 1346 (43%) Watches & Accessories
Online games Clothes & Shoes
&Camera Home furnitures
Computers & appiances
Books & CD
The amount of money claimed in 88% of complaints was less than
500 US dollars.---mainly related to consumer protection issues.
Figure 4 Sum of money claimed in complaints (Unit : Number of case, %, Won) Rate of incr
Classification 2007 2008 ease
Less than 10,000 122 (4.6) 235 (6.5) 92.6
10,000 ~ 50,000 55.9 (21.0) 987 (27.2) 76.6
50,000 ~ 100,000 683 (25.6) 827 (22.8) 21.1
100,000 ~ 500,000 880 (33.0) 1,144 (31.5) 30.0
500,000 ~ 1 million 195 (7.3) 215 (5.9) 10.3
1 million ~ 5 million 128 (4.8) 181 (5.0) 41.4
Over 5 million 18 (0.7) 42 (1.2) 133.3
Others 83 (3.1) 0 (0.0) 100.0
Total 2,668 (100.0) 3,631 (100.0) 36.1
ECMC provides traditional offline ADR as well as ODR
service. Depending on the complexity of disputes
ECMC may hold face to face hearing session.
It offers Cyber Mediation by using online chatting
program in http://www.ecmc.or.kr. Additionally
holding a telephone conference to clarify the factual
and legal issues in claims.
ECMC has recently employed the Automated
Consulting System (ACS) to assist parties to get an
online consultation. (see http://lex.ecmc.or.kr) --
While ECMC consulted 10,696 cases of e-commerce
grievances in 2008, ACS handled 5,354 cases.
3. Korean Internet Address Dispute Resolution
In January 2002 KDDRC launched domain name dispute
resolution service--the predecessor of current KIDRC.
In 2004 KIDRC was established under the Act on Internet Address
KIDRC offers ODR service which modelled after UDRP (Uniform
Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy) to resolve .kr country
code top level domain name (ccTLD) disputes.
KIDRC handled 279 cases during the period of 2002-2008
In addition KIDRC is currently working as the Seoul branch office
of ADNDRC (Asian Domain Name Dispute Resolution Center) to
handle gTLD domain name disputes.
Fig. 5. Results of Dispute cases handled by KIDRC (2002-2008)
Result of Resolution Number of Cases Ratio (%)
Mandatory Transfer 85 30.5
Cancellation 119 42.6
Dismissal 25 9.0
Withdrawal by Parties’ agre 39 14.0
Withdrawal due to unpaid fe 11 3.9
Total number of cases 279 100
of Korean Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (KDRP)
1. Cross-border Disputes
Many complainants are internationally well known trademark owners
and respondents are Korean
2. KDRP modelled after UDRP (Uniform Domain Name Dispute
To overcome legal complexity arising from conflict of law issues such as
jurisdiction and choice of law issues.
3. Speedy, Inexpensive and Non-binding Arbitration Procedure.
4. Paperless ODR-- without a face to face hearing session.
To save time and money in resolving domain name disputes without
travelling in long distance to participate in hearing session.
5. Remedy of KDRP is limited to the transfer or the cancellation of
disputed domain names but monetary claims for damages are not
Difference between KDRP and UDRP-
-the test for domain name dispute resolution
Under the UDRP Complainant must prove (i) identical or confusingly
similarity test (ii) legitimate interests test (iii) bad faith test
To reduce the conflicts between domain name dispute resolution practice
and the current Korean legal system
Under the KDRP Complainant must prove one or more among the
followings: (i) the Respondent’s use of the domain name infringes the
Complainant’s trademark rights (ii) the Respondent’s use of the domain
name leads to confusion with the Complainant’s products or business
conduct (iii) the Respondent’s use of the domain name damages the
distinctiveness or reputation of the Complaint’s trademark or service
mark (iv) the Respondent’s domain name registration is conducted to
interfere Complainant’s registration or to obtain unjustifiable profits
4. Electronic Litigation Filing System in Korean Courts
The Supreme Court of Korea announced to adopt the e-filing
service on a few civil cases in 2010.
Then, the e-litigation system will be introduced to all civil,
administrative, domestic, and bankruptcy cases starting in 2012 .
The adoption of the electronic litigation service has become
possible by the enactment of the Act on the Use of Electronic
Documents in Civil Lawsuits.
This law provides the definition of “electronic document” and
stipulates the scope and procedures of electronic litigation.
Electronic litigation filing allows a plaintiff to file for lawsuit or
present necessary legal documents on the internet and the court
to render the decision via electronic documents, thereby
eliminating the need to use paper to proceed with a lawsuit.
With rapidly developing internet technology,
more ADR providers and Korean courts are
expected to employ the ODR system.