ADDING SHIT TO KOREAN NAMES
To understand how Korean kinship terms are used, one must first have a basic idea of the Korean age system. Within this system, all people born within the same year on the Chinese lunar calendar (in practice, from the end of February in one year to the end of February in the next) are in the same age group, and people append honorific kinship terms only to the names of people in age groups above them, as follows:
Now, let's see what this looks like in practice with Super Junior. Super Junior can be divided into the following five age groups:
♀ to ♀ Stephanie: "Jiyeon-unni!" ♀ to ♂ Sunday: "Sungmin-oppa!" ♂ to ♀ TOP: "Hyori-nuna!" ♂ to ♂ Seungri: "Junsu-hyung!"
Kinship honorifics can be appended to people in age groups above one's own, but not to people in the same age group or in age groups below.
1983 line: Eeteuk, Heechul, Han Geng 1984 line: Yesung, Kangin 1985 line: Shindong, Sungmin 1986 line: Eunhyuk, Siwon, Donghae 1987 line: Ryeowook, Kibum, Kyuhyun
Sungmin calls Yesung hyung because Yesung is in the age group above him. He does not, however, call Shindong hyung, even though Shindong is older than him, because they are in the same age group. (See this post to learn what age groups your favorite Korean idols fall into.)
✔ Sungmin: "Yesung-hyung!" ✘ Sungmin: "Shindong-hyung!"
When addressing someone of equal or lesser social status (age groups, as determined above, play a part of this), one can attach -ah to a name that ends in a consonant and -yah to a name that ends in a vowel.
This suffix should not be used with those of higher social status; when calling to social superiors, kinship terms or other titles should be used.
✔ Yunho: "Junsu-yah!" ✘ Yunho: "Junsu-ah!" ✔ Junsu: "Yoochun-ah!" ✘ Junsu: "Yoochun-yah!"
(Note that while Changmin is just as likely to say the latter as he is the former, this is simply because he is a rude and incorrigible dongsaeng, not because it is socially acceptable.)
✔ Changmin: "Junsu-hyung!" ✘ Changmin: "Junsu-yah!"
It should be noted that this suffix is only used when addressing a person; it should not be used when mentioning a person to someone else.
A good rule of thumb to use is that if the word within a sentence is not set off by commas, it should not take -(y)ah.
✔ Jaejoong: "Yunho-yah, you wanna go to the store with me?" ✘ Jaejoong: "Yunho-yah went to the store with Changmin-ah."
Finally, because it has an addressing function, -(y)ah used in conjunction with other attention getting words can sound redundant.
✔ Yunho: "Jaejoong-ah!" ✔ Yunho: "Hey, Jaejoong!" ? Yunho: "Hey, Jaejoong-ah!"
-ie is a diminutive suffix attached to the end of a person's name as a sign of closeness and affection. This is only done to names ending in consonants; there is no vowel-ending equivalent.
Unlike -(y)ah, there is no restriction on context for usage, and it can be used with social superiors one is close to (provided, of course, that the proper kinship term or other honorific is attached).
✔ Onew: "Jonghyunnie's here!" ✘ Key: "Minhoie's here!"
Of course, one would not use this suffix with superiors one is not close.
✔ Taemin: "I want to learn how to sing like Jonghyunnie-hyung."
✘ Minho: "President Lee Soomannie is the head of our company."
-sshi is suffix attached to a name to create a respectful distance between the person named and the speaker. It is a polite ending, but not an honorific one, and as such it is used only with people of equal or lesser social status. To use it with one's superiors would be rude; in this case, titles are used instead.
-sshi is normally suffixed to either a person's full name ("Kim Heechul-sshi") or given name ("Heechul-sshi"); although it can be suffixed to just a person's family name ("Kim-sshi"), this has a less polite connotation and is only used with inferiors.
✘ Taeyeon: "First, we'd like to thank Lee Sooman-sshi..." ✔ Taeyeon: "First, we'd like to thank President Lee Sooman..."
Because of the distance implied by -sshi, it is not used with friends or others one is close to (notice how Kangin makes fun of Heechul at 3:55 here for saying he's close with Sungmin but still calling him "Sungmin-sshi").
I hope you now feel absolutely inundated with knowledge. If you have questions, concerns, or (heaven forbid!) corrections, let me know.