Why some Koreans make $10,000 a month to eat on camera

Mukbang is a Portmanteau word that combines the Korean word for “eat” (muok-da) with the word for “broadcast” (bang song). The top mukbang earners can earn as much as $10,000 a month by some accounts, not including sponsorships. The oddest part of their payment structure is that it’s not pay-per-view, ad-based, or salary-based. Rather, ordinary viewers voluntarily send their favorite BJs (which stands for Broadcasting Jockey, a uniquely Korean use of this acronym) money in the form of “star balloons”—a type of proprietary virtual currency that can be bought and sold with regular fiat cash. – Euny Hong, Quartz