‘Innovation’ vs ‘survival’ of eyeglass sales ‥ Coexistence like these?

◀ anchor ▶

This is a service that allows you to choose and try glasses on your smartphone when you buy them.

It has already succeeded overseas, but in Korea, it was blocked by the opposition of the Opticians Association.

The government intervened, and today the two sides reached an agreement on a win-win plan.

Reporter Lee Yoo-kyung will tell you.

◀ Report ▶

Warby Parker, an American eyewear company.

You can choose glasses and try them on yourself with the smartphone app.

You can also do an eye exam yourself at home.

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“The eye exam takes 20 minutes. You will need glasses, credit card, iPhone, computer and 3.6 meters of space.”

Warby Parker’s online eyewear sales service was a hit and went public on the New York Stock Exchange in September.

The corporate value jumped to 8 trillion won.

Korea has a similar service.

But I can’t even do an eye exam, and I can’t buy prescription glasses.

This is because in Korea, the sale of online glasses is prohibited by law.

The company applied to lift the regulation, but this time it met with opposition from the Opticians Association.

[민훈홍/안경사협회 수석부회장]

“Whether it’s price competitiveness or the next sales network, the truth is that we can’t keep up with them.”

Eventually, the government arbitrated, and after eight meetings, an agreement was reached on a win-win plan.

We decided to create a consultative body, review whether online eyeglass sales are safe, and create guidelines.

We may not be able to serve you right now, but the road is open.

[김명섭/라운즈 대표]

“Would it be an opportunity to try again later by preparing guidelines?”

Conflicts between startups armed with innovative technologies and existing industries are not the only ones.

Gangnam, a plastic surgery and dermatology price comparison platform, collided with the Korean Medical Association, and the real estate brokerage platform Jikbang collided with the Association of Certified Real Estate Agents.

The prescription drug delivery platform ‘Dr. Now’ filed a defamation complaint against the Korean Pharmaceutical Association, and the Bar Association was even sanctioned by the Fair Trade Commission for trying to block RoTalk, a platform for connecting lawyers.

Is there any way to achieve both win-win and innovation?

[유병준/서울대 경영학과 교수]

“We have prepared guidelines for going in a new direction, and there are difficulties and things we wanted. We need flexible thinking with a negotiation-like attitude that listens to those things.”

The government has created a coordinating body called the One Step Model, but so far only five have reached an agreement.

This is Lee Yoo-kyung from MBC News.

Video Editing: Jo Ara

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