The production team of KBS's '1 Night, 2 Days' received an appreciation plaque from Yu In-chon, the Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MCST).
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism announced that Minister Yu In-chon had awarded an appreciation plaque to the production team of '1 Night, 2 Days' for their contribution to promoting the Korean tourism industry, before the briefing session on tourism industry projects held in the afternoon of January 4 at the Korea Tourism Organization.
It is very exceptional for the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, which is in charge of culture, sports, tourism and the media, to award a plaque to a specific television program for its contribution to promoting an industry that is under the supervision of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism explained its reasons for awarding the plaque to '1 Night, 2 Days' in a press release - distributed prior to the briefing session - which read, "'1 Night, 2 Days' helped to promote the Korean tourism industry by introducing many of Korea's little known tourism resources to a wider public".
Deputy director Kim Hyeon-jun of the Tourism Policy Division said, on January 4th, "We do not make a habit of awarding plaques to television programs each year. That's why this is a very exceptional case".
However, questions have been raised as to whether television programs that introduce restaurants known to serve excellent cuisine should be awarded appreciation plaques for their contribution to promoting the Korean food industry.
And it has been pointed out that government organizations should be more careful when awarding appreciation plaques to specific television programs.
Deputy director Kim replied, "Though it may look different to each person, not one single television program has ever had such a great impact".
Kim also presented evidence that the number of tourists and local products sold had increased after the introduction of a specific area on '1 Night, 2 Days'.
What was suggested in the evidence, however, was entirely indirect and was what the media already covered:, , , . KBS announced that Happy Sunday – 1 Night, 2 Days, aired on January 3, recorded an average program rating of 40.5% and that it had set a record in achieving an average program rating of 30% for eighteen consecutive weeks.