The overall increase in Korean language learners is due to the influence of K-Pop and K-Dramas, including Squid Game.
While referring to the growing global popularity of the Korean language influenced by K-Pop and K-Dramas, the BBC cited a modern language association report, which showed that the Korean language's uptake in U.S. universities rose by almost 14 percent between 2013 and 2016.
A recent Reuters report quoted Sun Hyun-woo, founder of the e-learning platform Talk To Me In Korean, stating that there were thousands of people who wished to learn Korean "even before Squid Game or the BTS craze."
Reuters also quoted Duolingo, who claimed that the number of new users signing up to learn Korean climbed by 76 percent in the U.K. and 40 percent in the U.S. in the two weeks following the series premiere. They claimed around 40 percent growth in global new learners studying Korean within two weeks of Squid Game’s premiere on September 17, 2021.
On November 14, 2021, Salon quoted Cindy Blanco, Duolingo's senior learning scientist, stating that she believed the rise in Korean learners was due to Squid Game's popularity. Furthermore, the popularity of K-pop and K-dramas is another reason for the increase in the popularity of the Korean language, reported Salon.
While there was a brief rise in the popularity of the Korean language after Squid Game was released on Netflix, the overall global demand and popularity for learning the Korean language can also be attributed to the influence of K-Pop and K-Dramas.