Tag Archives: Kpop

In Memoriam: Go Eun-bi (EunB) & Kwon Ri-sae (RiSe) of Ladies’ Code

I’m sure everyone has heard the heartbreaking news that Go Eunbi (EunB) of Ladies’ Code is now deceased. The news has spread all over from Kpop news sites to general celebrity news sites, such as eonline.com and MTV.com. News is constantly being updated concerning the fate of members Kwon Ri-sae (Rise) and Lee Sojung. Lee Sojung is reported to be safely out of surgery and recovering, but Kwon Rise is still being treated in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). I’ve heard reports that she has some dents in her skull or near her brain, so she needs all the prayers she can get now. Go Eun-bi was 21 years old (22 Korean age), which makes her one year younger than me. She debuted with Ladies’ Code back in March of 2013. The group was praised by many fans and I always heard that they should be watched as they would go far in the industry. Go Eun-bi is said to have even been in uploaded dancer covers to YouTube before her debut under the channel name ashleych0i. I have only heard one song from Ladies’ Code a while back, but I liked their style. I never even knew that my favorite member was EunB, until I saw her the way she looked when I saw her perform live. My heart sank when I read the news and the feeling becomes worse when I read how young she was now. It all feels like one big nightmare that I can’t wake up from.

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Source: Koreaboo.com

I first saw the news on Koreaboo.com, which told me that EunB had passed away after her team’s van slipped on a rainy road and crashed into an expressway wall. I understood that everyone else in the van was just injured and no one else had died at the time. I now know the driver also died and two of the members were in critical condition with head injuries. The rest of the members are apparently in great shock, which makes sense and Kwon Rise is still being treated for her head injuries. I know it is important for Kpop idols to make it to their appointments on time and I do not know if the driver was going faster to make it on time, but rainy weather makes driving dangerous. A car going too fast can ride the water and crash or skidding can occur with many other bad outcomes. I hate to hear of deaths, especially those of young people. People generally say the person was taken too soon and I have to agree this time more than ever. Go Eun-bi was more than just a young girl and daughter. She was an idol, which means she gave strength and hope to those who looked up to her. Some people don’t understand how valuable a Kpop idol can be in a fan’s life. They give us strength to get us through a bad day, a messy breakup or even a life changing event. These idols are seen as family members and role models to many fans. Their lives are precious for many reasons and this is why even non-Ladies’ Code fans are mourning.

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Source: Koreaboo.com

The picture above shows the team’s van after it crashed into the expressway wall. I read a comment from someone that said the van’s journey would have taken an hour and they hoped the driver wasn’t trying to make it  in 45 minutes. I don’t recall their proof, but this is why I believe drivers for idols should be even more cautious than regular drivers. Rainy conditions mean a driver needs to slow down more than usual to avoid accidents. A entry on omonatheydidn’t.com says there was news that EunB was not wearing her seat-belt when the accident occurred, which resulted in her ejection from the car. I’m not going to turn this into a driving safety entry, but I must stress how important it is to wear a seat-belt when you are in a car. This is especially true when the weather conditions elevate the risk of accidents. She might have done that many times and nothing happened, but the risk is never worth it. I don’t know if wearing the seat-belt would have guaranteed her survival, but I believe it would have increased her odds. Fellow members Kwon Rise and Lee Sojung were taken to a nearby hospital with serious injuries and were in critical condition from the start, which prompted the doctors to begin surgery immediately.

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Source: Koreaboo.com

The reports of Kwon Rise and Lee Sojung in critical condition made me even more nervous because the worst case scenario would be additional deaths, which I kept telling myself not to think about anymore. I kept praying and I still am praying for their safe and full recoveries. Reports eventually came out that Lee Sojung had stabilized after about seven hours in surgery, but Kwon Rise stayed for nine hours and was taken to the ICU for further treatment. A live update was set up on Koreaboo.com to see the condolence tweets that were coming in for the members of Ladies’ Code and those connected to them by other celebrities. Some of these celebrities are miss A’s Suzy, Kahi, Dal Shabet’s Soobin, Fly To The Sky’s Brian Joo, Brown Eyed Girls’ Jea, Meagan Lee, G.NA, GOD’s Joon and Arirang TV’s “After School Club” to name a few people. Naturally, Polaris Entertainment issued a statement once they were able to gather more information and take in the situation. The statement says the members were returning from their scheduled activities when the back tire of the van fell out. It goes on to mention the status of Kwon Rise and Lee Sojung as well as a wish for fans to pray for the members. The location of Eun-bi’s funeral had not been decided yet. I don’t know how vehicles work exactly, but I hope it wasn’t because of improper maintenance or the speed traveled caused the tires to come loose. Regardless of how the tire came loose, I have prayed for Eun-bi to rest in peace and for the full recoveries of those injured. A singer by the name of “Eru” tweeted about this type of situation concerning schedules and how labels need to have their idols’ safety on their minds first. His tweet was translated as saying “If you are to assign them a hectic schedule, you must take take good care of them. The safety of those who are assets to your company should be more important than their schedules. No matter how bothersome it may be, you must always check the condition of the car being mobilised and the driver who is to drive. To all the managers in the entertainment industry.” I still don’t know the details of what happened to cause the tire to get loose, but I still believe something could have been done to make that trip safer. I know I’m mentioning prayer a lot and some people might not believe in prayer, but well wishes are fine too. That’s just what I do and this is especially true during tragic moments.

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Source: Koreaboo.com

This is a time when I believe Kpop fans show we are one family. It’s true that we bicker and fight over our idols, but they are all precious to us and we support one another. It’s a shame this is only seen during times like these, but the proof is there. Fans all over used the hashtag “RIPEunB” to express their condolences on social media, which helped the hashtag become #1 on Twitter shortly after the news broke and soon on Facebook as well. Some tweets or Facebook comments show some mourners did not consider themselves fans of the group, but the news still broke their hearts. This is what I am talking about here. I liked Ladies’ Code and EunB was my favorite/bias in the group, but I never felt I knew them enough to be considered a fan. Maybe a new fan, but the point is you don’t need to be a fan to mourn her death. You don’t even have to know much about Kpop to mourn Eun-bi’s passing and support is vital now. Family, friends and fans need strength to get through this tragic event now more than ever. I still choke up and begin cry a bit when I think about it. I recall the live footage of her smile and the group being happy together, then this news comes to mind and I can’t keep all the tears in. It’s fine to cry too and it’s not something to be ashamed of either. I hear news of people mocking mourning fans and even some nonsense with a fortune teller predicting an idol’s death this year. Why is being respectful so hard for some people? I don’t care if you consider yourself a “hater” or “anti-fan”. You are a jerk and a disrespectful wretch, as well as a pathetic attention-seeker. If you are not going to express condolences or wish the members well, then just KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT AND YOUR THOUGHTS TO YOURSELF. It’s not funny to mock someone’s death and ridicule the pain of others. That is just sick, but I ask fans to focus on showing the members of Ladies’ Code and those close to them your support. The hospitals refused to give out information on Kwon Rise and Lee Sojung when they were operating and some information might never be released, but that’s not important. It’s understandable and we should focus on showing our support. This proves another important point in the Kpop world. IDOLS ARE HUMAN JUST LIKE US AND THEY HAVE FEELINGS TOO. One of the most ignorant things I have ever heard about Kpop idols was that they decided to become celebrities, so that means bashing them is just part of the natural order. This is PURE IGNORANCE and plays on a double standard, which a lot of people often complain about in their own lives. It might be a different  double standard, but that doesn’t matter to me. These idols see the hurtful comments, even if you are commenting on YouTube videos or your personal blogs. They see reaction videos and their feeling can be hurt. Go Eun-bi was a celebrity, but she was also a young woman who went through life’s challenges like the rest of us. She’ll never get to fall in love with a man, marry him, have a family of her own or even just experience the many things life has to offer. Life doesn’t need any help making itself difficult for everyone, so don’t make things harder for these idols. Now is the time for unity and that is how it should be all the time. Ignore and block the cruel people who would mock this situation and those who are mourning now.  Those individuals just want attention, so don’t give it to them.

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Source: Koreaboo.com

It was recently revealed that Eun-bi wanted to spend Chuseok with her family. Chuseok is also called the “Korean Thanksgiving” and it is a time when families gather to celebrate the harvest as well as visit ancestral hometowns, according to old traditions. I mostly see news of families gathering to celebrate their family, remember those who have passed and even visit the graves of deceased loved ones. Eun-bi expressed her desire to be with her family, since she is not able to see them often. That is a common trait in a Kpop idol’s life and it is hard to bear, even with family support. She is quoted in a Koreaboo.com article saying she believed that “the little things in life are the happiest.” EunB is remembered as an idol who loved her fans, also known as a “fanbabo”, and this was recently echoed by a reporter. The narrative can be read here. It talks about EunB’s love for her fans and talking about girls’ feelings through songs like ‘Bad Girl’ and ‘Pretty Pretty’. It concludes saying that EunB can no longer be on stage, but she will be remembered for her time there. That is important for everyone to remember too. Remember Eun-bi for the sweet young woman who loved her fans and brought joy to many people. I will conclude by saying that I am extremely sad at the passing of Go Eun-bi and I will keep praying for Kwon Rise and Lee Sojung to make full recoveries. I hope all the members, families, friends and fans involved can rely on each other to get through this tough time together. Some people will never recover because of how important Eun-bi was to them, but they can always rely on those who feel the same. I pray that Kwon Rise and Lee Sojung don’t encounter any problems later on in life from their injuries and I hope that Go Eun-bi is resting peacefully. Heaven has a new angel in Go Eun-bi and fans will help her live on in memory. Be respectful and don’t forget the wonderful angel that is Go Eun-bi.

My deepest condolence to the family of Go Eun-bi. May she Rest In Peace (R.I.P).

*This is supposed to be the last video of Ladies’ Code before the accident. (Close pop ups)

*This was Ladies’ Code debut stage with ‘Bad Girl’

*This was the stage for their latest song ‘Kiss Kiss’

*This is the YouTube channel with Ashely (leader of Ladies’ Code) and EunB (vocalist).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FFOL9weICw&list=UUfB2E_culXfbKpxr7KqzV3Q [Playlist]

*Remember the hashtags being used to express condolences is “#RIPEunB” as well as “#PrayForLadiesCode”*

Update: (1) Go Eun-bi’s funeral will be held on September 5th. Polaris Entertainment, announced that her vigil/wake will be held at Korean University Anam Hospital until her funeral on September 5th.

(2) Lee Sojung will be going for surgery for her fractures, Kwon Rise is out of surgery and being observed closely and Ashley, as well as Zuny, is being given seperate treatments to deal with their state of [great] shock.

(3) Polaris Entertainment reveals the van involved in the accident was rented because there were problems with the usual van. There are reports suggesting the van holding the members of Ladies’ Code was trying to avoid colliding with another van when it crashed. One of the van’s back tires fell off and it was the first time this van was used, according to a statement by Polaris Entertainment. Polaris Entertainment defends the manager and the van was sent to the National Forensic Service for inspection. *Opinion: I believe they should have gone with a van that has a good track record, even if it was one ride. It seems too risky to use something like a vehicle that is being used for the first time. I just wish they had asked for a van with a record of secure passenger transportation.*

(4) Sojung suffered more than a head injury. She also sustained a facial fracture, which is why there was talk of her not being able to be an entertainer again due to facial damage. This is not a statement made by the hospital or the label, so it is too early to say that. Sojung apparently apologized for not being able to complete the group’s activities, but she was not told about the death of Eun-bi at the time. *Opinion: It is likely that the label and family thought it would be unwise to tell Sojung this information when she is going to get surgery again and still in shock from the incident. Sojung knowing Eun-bi is dead would likely cause problems to her health, like an elevated state of shock/panic or cause her heart rate to increase to a level unfit for surgery. *

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Source: Koreaboo.com

(5) According to Koreaboo.com, Dispatch revealed Eun-bi’s mother broke down at her daughter’s wake and said “Only today, I cry. I hope you’re happy forever.. Goodbye. It’s okay to smile [while] thinking of me sometimes. I’m fine, thank you. Thank you.” This seems to refer to the idea that one should not mourn the dead, but celebrate that they are in a better place. Of course a mother would cry at the wake of her young daughter, but these are words that imply Eun-bi’s mother is going to try to be strong. Eun-bi’s mother also showed concern for RiSe and believed Eun-bi would watch over her before leaving. *Opinion: I was always told that no parent wants to bury their child and I have always believed that. I know Eun-bi’s mother is sad and it should not be surprising. I have constantly said on social media that I believe Eun-bi is like a guardian angel to the other members now and I believe her spirit will help RiSe recover.

(6) A 14 point summary was developed by Dispatch to follow the story. It includes the initial accident and developments, such as Sojung and RiSe’s condition. It is noted that RiSe planned to spend Chuseok (Korean Thanksgiving) with her parents in Hong Kong. Her parents live in Japan, so she does not get to see them often.  The ‘KBS Open Concert’ was the event the group was returning from the day of the accident and there was nothing reported to be scheduled afterwards (no hectic schedule).

(7) Eun-bi will be cremated at Skycastle Memorial Park after her wake and funeral. Eun-bi’s family attended her funeral, which was held at University Anam Hospital Funeral Hall. It is reported that the coffin rites were done in a “traditional Christian manner”.

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Source: Koreaboo.com

(8) Hospital officials are focused mostly on the condition of Kwon RiSe. I have read somewhere that the phrase “hanging by a thread” was used to describe RiSe’s condition at one point. RiSe has yet to regain consciousness and I’ve read it has been a full 24 hours now. She remains in the neurosurgical section of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU). The doctors at the hospital said the main issue is RiSe regaining consciousness and stressed how important it is that her surgery had to be interrupted. I read it was due to low blood pressure and she had to be resuscitated by hand at one point. *Opinion: RiSe’s condition is shaky and lots of prayers/well wishes are needed. I have been constantly praying and the hashtag “#PrayForRiSe” is used to show support for her.

(9) Dispatch got photos from Eun-bi’s funeral and it should be known that these will be emotional, which means you should expect your emotions to be stirred. I know some people feel Dispatch should not have taken photos and that belief is fine. However, I am glad the family allowed them to take photos because some of us wish to see her being sent off. No one has to agree with that belief, but I am glad because my heart is still broken over the passing of Eun-bi.

*Note: The girls with the neck braces and bandages on their hands to wrists are very likely to be Ladies’Code members Ashley and Zuny.

The pictures will follow:

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Source (for all photos): Koreaboo.com

(10) Eun-bi’s mother urged members Ashley and Zuny to stay strong and never give up. She also told Ashley she would be her “Korea mother” because her real mother could not be there. Sojung completed her new facial surgery and is receiving treatment in a separate area than the one that held Eun-bi’s funeral. According to an article on Koreaboo.com, Sojung began to be suspicious that something bad had happened when she asked visitors from her label the question “Why is everyone coming to visit me all in black?”, but she stopped asking soon afterwards. It is suspected even she knew the truth would be something she could not handle at the time and that is likely to be true. *Opinion: I believe Sojung knows someone died in the accident and I would even go so far as to say she knows or heavily suspects it is a member of Ladies’ Code. I would not see how she could suspect a specific person, but I do believe she knows a fellow member has died. It will be a terrible revelation to her when she is told that Eun-bi has died.

(11) Ladies’ Code members Ashley and Zuny were readmitted to the hospital recently for more treatment.  Neither member has made a full recovery yet, so this is an expected development. Sojung is in stable condition and there is little worry her condition will worsen. However, RiSe has still not regained consciousness after her surgery and most of the concern revolves around her. I’m asking everyone to continue to pray for RiSe, which is echoed by Eun-bi’s mother as well.

(12) New reports from first responders is out. Eun-bi was NOT ejected from the car as previously believed. She was found unconscious inside the car beside RiSe and Sojung. One of the front tires was also found to be heavily bent out of shape. RiSe was found bleeding from her head and she had no pulse, which required first responders to perform CPR on her immediately. Additonal pictures have been released and can be seen here.

(13) It was also recently revealed that Sojung had known about Eun-bi’s passing before her facial surgery. She was able to deduce someone passed from how her visitors were dressed and she was healthy enough to search for articles on her cell phone. It seems Polaris Entertainment did not cover every possible scenario for her discovering the truth. Sojung was shocked at first, but she is slowly gathering herself. *Opinion: I figured Sojung would figure it out from people visiting her in their mourning clothes. I didn’t know that no one took her cell phone from her. If I knew that, then it would have been more obvious that Sojung would know exactly who had died. RiSe is still in the ICU and no new information has been released about her regaining consciousness yet.

(14) Heartbreaking news has been released. Kwon Ri-sae (RiSe) has died at the age of 23. Time of death was recorded at 10:10AM on September 7th. RiSe’s was reported with low blood pressure at one point and she has succumbed to her injuries. *Note: I will edit the title to be in memory of Go Eun-bi and Kwon Ri-sae. Heaven has a new angel and my condolences to her family. May her soul rest in peace.

 

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Torn Between Topics

I’m sorry I have not blogged for a while. I have been injured while training, but I am recovering well. It hurts to sit at the computer, so I will probably wait to recover over the weekend. However, I’m torn over what to blog about next. There are two topics I have in mind and both seem worthy of discussion. However, both are potentially controversial and require careful wording. The first topic is the fan reaction to Sulli’s dating, which ranges from the picture burning to the “Fashion King” attendance situation. The other situation is the situation with Kim Hyunjoong and his injured [ex]girlfriend. That would cover general fan reactions, revealed information and touch a little on the topic of domestic abuse. Both topics will have my take on the situation, of course. Both are worthy topics and go into interesting areas, but I don’t know which one to choose. I would dedicate time while I recover to doing the best research I can in time. Please help me choose, readers. I apologize for being gone so long and thank you.

 

 

 

 

 

Disrespectful “Diss Track” From A.KOR’s Kemy to 2NE1’s Park Bom

I had planned to stay away from this topic, but I was asked if I was going to do it and I have come to the conclusion that I should share my perspective. I believe this is the first time I must stress that this is my opinion with the facts currently know about this situation. I have no intention to insult anyone else’s opinion, so I ask my readers to calmly express themselves when the need comes up. “Diss battles” or a series of “diss tracks” released from artists targeting one another is nothing new. I did some research and found out these tracks have roots all the way back to satirical poems from medieval times. They basically started out as a “Just poking fun, so no hard feelings. Right?” situation and I would guess that the poet really didn’t mean to tear down the person they targeted. “Diss tracks” are commonly associated with the hip-hop genre and a part of rivalries in the same genre. The use of “diss tracks” are generally understood to be for publicity with fans of either artist choosing sides and even purchasing their artist’s CDs in a show of support. These rivalries can involve more than two sides as well. These “diss battles” are generally used to get attention for the artist and boost their sales. This can be different if the artists involved actually have a dislike or hatred for the artists they are targeting in their music or the situation escalated due to an artist who was not targeted getting involved. That basically means an artist got involved to “fan the flames” for whatever reason. I’m not a hip-hop historian (It does sound nice to say though), but I’m using what I have heard. This situation has come up before in South Korea as recent as last year, so “diss tracks” are not unseen in the Korean music industry. If such a conflict arises in the K hip-hop scene, then it’s not that big of a surprise. It might be surprising if a “diss track” crosses the line or seems to lack a base, but most fans would just watch to see how it ends. However, it does come as a surprise when it comes unprovoked and from a rookie to an experienced senior. This is the current situation with A.KOR’s Kemy and 2NE1’s Park Bom.

A Concise Guide to the “Diss” Battles Involving E-Sens, Amoeba Culture, Simon D and More

The K Hip-hop scene is susceptible to “diss battles” just like any other countries hip-hop scene. Fans of the pop or “mainstream” Kpop scene might not be aware of the genre and lump them together with the other Kpop groups when seeing them promote on music shows, but these artists do have a separate genre. A heated “diss battle” happened last year around July and it made itself very noticeable. Maybe the summer heat got to them? ><

[Source: Soompi.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/n4e89qu

Let’s start with the “diss battle” that started last year before moving to A.KOR’s Kemy. The “diss battle” back in the summer of 2013 was apparently started with the release of a song called “Control” by an American hip-hop artist known as Big Sean with a verse by another American hip-hop artist called Kendrick Lamar. It’s interesting how easy it is for influence to travel across oceans, but that is the power of music. It’s unfortunate that is started something so negative, but opinions will vary. The song “Control” apparently had the verse by Kendrick Lamar that “put on blast”, which was met with responding tracks by those he had named in the verse. This inspired a K hip-hop artist known as ‘Swings’ to make a song called “King Swings”. It’s not the most modest name for a song, but it does get attention and that is key in this situation. It appears that ‘Swings’ felt Kendrick Lamar’s verse was a collection of “disses” to those he named, but some people said it was actually a call to those named for an improvement in their music. A “call to step up” as one person put it, but it was not interpreted that way by ‘Swings’ at all. The song “King Swings” apparently calls out a lot of K hip-hop artists in a manner that earned it the title of “diss track”. This cleared a path for E-Sens to make a song called “You Can’t Control Me”, which targeted Gaeko and Amoeba Culture. Amoeba Culture was E-Sens former home, until he left on July 19, 2013. I don’t believe they left on bad terms, but making a “diss track” that targets your former label after you just left it brings up that possibility. According to a Soompi.com article, E-Sens accused Gaeko of “being fake and a sellout, while describing his treatment during and after his contract with Amoeba Culture.” That last part implies E-Sens did not have positive feelings while at Amoeba Culture or it could be an exaggeration for the sake of the song. The main point is that they got targeted, but soon announced they were not getting involved as a company to combat the song or its implied claims.

There is no rule for a “diss battle”, so any artist can come back into the “battle of words”, even if no one responded to them or targeted them. ‘Swings’ decided to release a follow up to his song “King Swings”, which he called “King Swings Part 2” and this song targeted artists ‘Ugly Duck’ and Simon D. This song is known for getting to the “name calling” soon after beginning and he accused Simon D of selling out, which had negative side effects on his former partner E-Sens. I don’t know if he is implying that E-Sens ended up suffering under Amoeba Culture , which might have a connection to the break up of their team “Supreme Team” and him leaving the company. This song is also known for the second half containing a lot of English, which the same Soompi.com article states was for his “English-speaking listeners”. Gaeko decided to respond to E-Sens in a blunt manner with his song called “I Can Control You” (Do you see what he did there? Okay then) and it drew on E-Sens’ marijuana scandal from the previous year. I guess there a no “low blows” among K hip-hop artists. I don’t know how it works, but this is apparently what one must be ready for if they start a “diss battle”. Gaeko used that scandal to call out E-Sens’ “selfishness, immaturity, and unprofessionalism. ” There are a few more back and forth moments afterwards, but this “battle” is not the main point of the article, so I’ll move on to the end. Eventually artists like Zion T. and Tarae expressed their desire to see the “diss war” end. It surely does seem like there were some personal agendas involved, but some of the artists involved still talk to each other and “diss wars” are just a part of life for them. It might not be common, but hip-hop artists seem to be ready for the possibility at any time.

Rookie Rapper Kemy of A.KOR Targets 2NE1′s Park Bom with a Diss Track

The main difference between that “diss battle” and the situation with A.KOR’s Kemy is that Park Bom is considered a part of the mainstream pop genre, which is accompanied by her position as 2NE1’s main vocalist. If Kemy had targeted CL, then it is likely that fans might not be as outraged. Of course there are fans who will be outraged at any attack on their idol group, but is it hard to understand when the targeted group is not a K hip-hop group? That might be a factor.

[Source: Soompi.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/mzcv5lt

Of course I am a Blackjack and this news made me very angry when I heard it. Many of us know Park Bom (Bommie) as a kind, gentle person with a sweet personality. It does not appear to take much to make Bommie cry and that image rushes into our heads when we see an insult heading her way. It’s a natural protectiveness a dedicated fan has to their idol, which is understandable. I believe my initial reaction was a fair one, which was a condemning of Kemy’s disrespectful action and confusion about why she would target Bommie at all. Some people feel she is going after her competition from the start, but that doesn’t quite make sense. 2NE1 is not the only girl group in Kpop and they are not even a K Hip-hop group. 2NE1 is known for having hip-hop elements in their songs and YG Entertainment (YGE) is known for its embracing of hip-hop culture. However, 2NE1 has a combination of pop, hip-hop, R&B, electropop and other genres. I mentioned above that Kemy’s main target was a factor in the outrage because a “diss battle” generally involves rappers and Park Bom is not a rapper. You don’t even get the vibe of a rapper from her and she doesn’t give off the attitude of a diva either, so most outraged Blackjacks saw the “diss track” as an attack on a person who could not fight back. The other factor in the outrage were the lyrics in the “diss track” about Park Bom. Gaeko’s response to E-Sens brought up his past marijuana scandal to point out negative character traits, which is similar to what Kemy tried to do with Park Bom’s past drug scandal. The difference begins with the previously stated fact that Gaeko and E-Sens are K hip-hop artists and one attacked the other before a response was given back. Park Bom never attacked Kemy with a “diss track”, which is also accompanied by the fact that A.KOR debuted no more than two weeks ago. They just debuted and their rapper has already caused an issue or is it an opportunity? That is one of the key points of those condemning the outraged Blackjacks. Those people point out that this is for publicity and A.KOR’s label (Doo Republic) would have to had seen the song to let it pass. This is not a song that Kemy uploaded on a personal YouTube account or spread on a forum. This is an official song by Kemy, which means the label knew about its contents. The Kpop market is flooded with groups that are just debuting and already in existence for years. Veteran idol groups like “g.o.d” and “Fly to the Sky” recently made comebacks, so competition can suddenly appear from any direction. You either stand out or you get left behind, so publicity stunts are not unexpected from new groups. However, Kemy’s actions cross a line that should have been left alone.

An interesting note about this “diss track” is that it does not name Park Bom in the song, but the lyrics could not make it more obvious aside from actually naming her. Lyrics like “You’re weak and you fell into drugs.
Did the drugs fall into the jelly box? Who glanced over the 4 pills that disappeared? Since when were the prosecutors so nice?” clearly point to Park Bom’s past drug scandal, which was brought up again recently. Also, lyrics like “It must be nice for your fans to cover you up. I’m jealous that your CEO writes a novel for you. You set fire on your Roommate friends, and they must feel chaotic, because the corn exploded. You’ll hide behind your influential label and then come back when it gets quiet.” clearly point to YGE’s letter explaining Bommie’s prescription for the medication, Blackjacks defending her in an instant and her involvement with the SBS variety show “Roommate”. The issue for my condemning of Kemy’s actions come from the fact that she is reported as 17 and new to the Korean music industry. That makes Park Bom her senior in more than one way and her “diss track” is extremely rude to her senior. One person on a forum pointed out that SNSD is a big competitor for 2NE1 and they never did such a thing. Members of SNSD have even mentioned respecting 2NE1 and both groups appear to get along just fine. That debunks the “taking on her competition angle”, which was never a good defense from the start. Gaeko, E-Sens and the other K hip-hop artists from the “battle” last year had been in the industry a while and they were not far from each other in age. That is an important factor this time for me and other people as well. A.KOR just debuted and this is a poor way to get attention. Maybe their “Payday” MV has gotten some more views since this situation started, but the views are dismal compared to many other Korean MVs, the dislikes vastly outnumber the likes and the comments are filled with obvious negativity. What makes this situation worse is that hate is now being directed to the other members of ‘A.KOR’, who might not have supported such an action at all. The other members might not have known at all, but the final decision would be in the hands of the label. This “diss track” also leaves a bad impression in the eyes of other industry officials. Kemy went for a big target, which means many people find out about it in a small amount of time. Some people feel the publicity will be good no matter what the outrage seems like now, but one must remember that there are entertainers that will remember this and view A.KOR in a negative light. This could hurt them in the long run and maybe draw “diss tracks” towards them, which the group might not be ready for as a whole. There is no guarantee the other members would be able to handle “diss tracks” back at them, so Kemy might have “opened Pandora’s Box” in a sense. I don’t believe Kemy’s choice will help A.KOR in the long run and that might hurt their success overall.

Park Bom’s Stylist Lashes Out at Rookie Rapper Kemy and Her Diss Track

K-netizens can be an odd bunch when it comes to scandals and controversies. Often called “Keyboard Warrior” for their constant typing to express their (often biased) opinions and clashing with other netizens online. K-netizens in this situation have opinions as well, but condemned Park Bom’s stylist for interfering in the situation. This seems quite hypocritical as K-netizens interfere by expressing their opinions as well. Some people call it a “double standard”, but I just call it “stupid”.

[Source: Soompi.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/qa5rgnv

The reason K-netizens might have told Park Bom’s stylist to stay out of the situation was because she is not a random person hiding behind a computer screen. She is an employee of YG Entertainment, which means her opinion could contain bias and it is not her battle to fight. The quote in a Soompi.com article showed the K-netizens saying ” it wasn’t a fight for a third party to interfere in, and that the post was rash”. A rash post from a third party in a Kpop controversy is nothing new and K-netizens do it on a daily basis, so that would have been a sign for me to ignore them. However, the post and the Instagram account it was on were deleted shortly after criticism came her way. It was probably her way of agreeing to stay out of it and support Bommie in a private manner. Of course screenshots were captured before that and they can be found all over the internet, including right here. According to Soompi.com, the post the stylist made said “Look at everyone and their grandmother saying that they’re doing hip hop and throwing out diss tracks. The ink on your ID card hasn’t even dried yet, and look at you speaking informally to someone who is a huge senior to you. You’ve got some nerve. It’s like you want to retire right after your debut. If you want to diss someone, do it when you’re on their level.” This essentially says that A.KOR’s Kemy has just debuted and yet she is already putting out tracks that insult another person who is a senior of many years to her. The last part is probably not serious, but it mentions her being able to do such a thing when she is on the level of Park Bom in terms of seniority. This can never happen as both artists can not be at the same level of seniority since they debuted so far apart. That would require breaking some law of time and maybe space, so that option is out. The main focus of the post is that Kemy’s action was rude and that has been my point from the start. “Diss tracks” appear to be nothing more than rude attempts to get attention, when they are not childish squabbles between artists in the public eye. Some rappers might feel it is a natural part of the hip-hop culture, but insulting your senior with no personal reason to do so is pathetic in my eyes. This is a clear attempt at attention using news that has passed or been explained already. It was very foolish to target such a big group too. YG Entertainment is known as “YG Family” and the fandoms are often known to band together when presented with a common enemy, which is not uncommon to see in human behavior. YG fandoms banding together also happens to support each other and that is also happening now. Various YG fandoms are gathering to condemn A.KOR’s Kemy through deeming her disrespectful and requesting an apology, which is what Blackjacks like myself are doing and even creating “diss tracks” back at Kemy. That is just like trying to put out fire with more fire to me, but I won’t bother them. They are being creative, but some of them are just as hurtful with a collection of fans who are going too far in my eyes.

There will always be the extreme fans who do not control their emotions or even want to take the “high ground” in moments like these. It would defeat Kemy’s goal in more than one way if fans ignored the “diss track” and shrugged off Kemy, but some people just have to respond over and over again. I have only stated how disrespectful I found Kemy and her “diss track”, which I deemed a foolish act for the target she chose as well. Some people are choosing to insult Kemy right back with mocking lyrics about her appearance and lack of fans. I believe “two wrongs don’t make a right”, but I have heard Kemy merely put out a “Thanks” that I cannot confirm. If it is true, then it only means Kemy has yet to see how seriously disrespectful some people have found her actions and she is content with her track’s purpose. Now this action can come back to hurt her career, such as it being brought up by an MC during a time when the group or Kemy is well known. An MC can even save their facts from this event for a time when the group or Kemy is going through a big scandal/controversy and use it to case more drama, which could have terrible consequences during such a time. One never knows, which is why people are advised to be very careful about what they do. This is even more true for public figures, which Kemy became upon her debut. The reactions I do not agree with and condemn are the death threats. These always show up from extreme fans who have no control of their emotions and perhaps are emotionally unstable in their everyday life. They could even be sasaengs, which would not surprise me at all. Every fandom has them, so there is no point in denying it. Some fandoms do a better job of controlling or stopping them, but death threats are a tactic that is usually associated with the obsessive sasaengs. Such actions are terrible either way and I am ashamed people would even speak of such a thing. Something to note is that some people cause trouble under the guise of a Blackjack or they are automatically labeled one by people who see them condemning Kemy. I do not believe a true Blackjack resorts to such tactics, but that is how I choose to see my fandom. I only wish for Kemy to apologize for her disrespectful actions and reflect to become a better person. It would appear such “diss tracks” do have a place in the music world, but I do not believe Kemy has found that place yet. Some people may believe this means she should not have to apologize, but I believe so and I am not alone. In the end, the “diss track” was unprovoked and a rude way to introduce herself to the music world. I do hope everyone can calmly express their opinions on the matter from now and I sincerely hope Kemy realizes such music is not necessary to become a good hip-hop artist. Her actions have consequences that affect other people as well. Kemy needs to think before she acts or A.KOR might end up suffering for her actions in the long run.

*This is a Twitter petition (Twitition) for a formal apology to be made from A.KOR’s Kemy: http://twitition.com/v96ul

Here is A.KOR’s debut MV “Payday” with all I mentioned above.

This is the currently “infamous diss track” from A.KOR’s Kemy concerning Park Bom.

Of course, I also have some Park Bom for everyone too. ^^

Introducing ‘Red Velvet’! No, Not That One.

My mind immediately goes to the image of a nice, when eaten every now and then, cupcake when you say the words “red velvet” to me. However, that is not the case in this situation. That should be no surprise with group names in the Kpop industry. ‘Ladies’ Code’ is not the female equivalent of the “Bro Code” and ‘Sistar’ did not misspell the word “sister”.  Even words like “Delight” or “WINNER” end up being names and sometimes there are meanings behind these names. Sometimes a label just picks a random word or group of words and goes with it. This entry isn’t trying to break down Kpop group names and their meanings though. This case is about the conflict that existed between the indie band ‘Red Velvet’ and SM Entertainment’s (SME) new girl group ‘Red Velvet’. I will say from now that I already know that the indie band did not have the rights to the name and this entry is not aimed at “bashing” SM Entertainment. This is just my take on the situation and how I feel about it all.

It’s surprising Hyuna’s “Red” didn’t have a red velvet cupcake in it for sweetness, but I guess that would be too many red velvet names in such a short time. Some people are being funny and saying the cupcake had the name first. Anyone want to represent a sweet dessert in a court of law? >_<

This issue came to light before SME’s ‘Red Velvet’ even debuted and it was brought to the public’s attention when the indie band ‘Red Velvet’ showed discomfort with another group having the same name as them. There is another annoying problem now. I know both ‘Red Velvet’ groups are new and it’s not likely there will be much confusion, but just having to explain which ‘Red Velvet’ I’m talking about every time I bring up the name is annoying. *sigh* SME really had to have that name. I’ll move on, but it still annoys me. Now the indie band ‘Red Velvet’ is said to be from the area around Hongik University and they started performing/debuted in 2013. They have one song so far called “The Day After You Left (헤어진 다음날) and I really like the song. It’s the kind of song you would hear in a cafe and would relax too.  Ha Hee Soo, a member of the indie band Red Velvet, had stated they were around for a year, performed at Hongik University (where they are based around) and are preparing for a new release soon. She is quoted in an article from Soompi.com saying, “It’s not like SM wouldn’t have searched the name before they decided to use it,” expressing the band’s disappointment. The same article mentions their song is listed on various music sites. The claim is not unfounded, since a label should be expected to research if there is any group that currently exists  with the name. Even indie bands should be checked because it can cause confusion and tilt search engine results in favor of the side with the bigger company (and a logistics team that understands how to have their names on the top of search engine lists). Some people mention how typing ‘Red Velvet’ will still show results for cakes and cupcakes. They are not wrong because I just tested it. However, put the word “Kpop” next to those words and good luck finding results for the indie band. They’ve been around longer too, but there is only so much an indie band can do. Ha Hee Soo is once again quoted in the same article saying, “We’re a powerless indie band. If SM’s girl group debuts, our activities and promotions are going to get difficult. We’ve just now gotten our footing, and we have a lot of affection for our name, too.” It’s true that the name “Red Velvet” sounds nice and it’s natural that an indie band has affection for their name. However, it should be noted that even they realize the limits of their band. They are an indie group and it is not easy to patent a name, which apparently can be worked around with a few changes to the name. Obtaining the rights to a name can be a tricky process, which can also become expensive and time-consuming as well. It was confirmed that the indie band did not have the rights to the name “Red Velvet” and a patent attorney basically said they would not get it, if they did not apply first. Obviously SME applied as soon as they saw the opening, so that chance is gone. I doubt even a petition with millions of signatures would do a thing to change SME’s mind. As some people say, “Goliath beats David in the real world” and any label as big as SME is not likely to lose any kind of dispute with an indie band.

SM’s Red Velvet Runs Into Name Trouble With Indie Band Red Velvet, Agreement Reached

SM Entertainment’s ‘Red Velvet’ is off to an interesting start with controversies around them from the beginning. It’s not as bad as it sounds, but the fact that it is true makes it an interesting start. So far I have seen the indie band debate, the newspaper/insensitive imagery placement and fan disapproval of their debut right off f(x)’s promotions being cut short. At least people are talking about them and maybe that’s the point. There’s no such thing as bad publicity (as long as damage control is possible). 

[Source: Soopmi.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/nav8nkn

Now I find it hard to believe that SM Entertainment did not look into the name “Red Velvet” before deciding to use it. They could not have just thought about all the Kpop groups they know and thought “Nope. No groups with that name, so we’re good”. I believe they did come across the indie band and had their legal team check if they band had claimed the rights to the name. A smirk probably appeared on their faces as they raced to claim the rights to the name, which leaves the indie band ‘Red Velvet’ out in the dust. Is ‘Red Velvet’ the perfect group name? Not really. Is it really worth potentially hurting the chances of success for an indie band? Not to me, but this is the world of business. It all comes down to cold, unemotional decisions. YG Entertainment had run into this problem with 2NE1 when there was already a solo artist with the name ’21’. They changed the spelling and all was fixed with an apology to boot. Remember how I mentioned earlier about getting around name patenting with a simple change in the name’s format? Do you get it now? There you go then. I don’t think the indie band will change the format (which I can’t seem to figure out), so they are stuck at the mercy of SME. That is not a good place to be, since I don’t believe the current SME has a good understanding of mercy. Wow! It is really hard to appear fair when talking about a topic like this with SM Entertainment involved, but I am trying my best. I’m just being honest with how I understand things. Your opinions will (obviously) vary.

SM Entertainment’s ‘Red Velvet’ ran into other issues once they debuted, such as the insensitive newspaper headlines and images in some scenes. The message of happiness might have been good, but some parts were not seen as appropriate anyway. The MV was edited to change those parts, but people still remember it. Let’s hope this is the last controversy for them, at least for a long time.

[Source: Hellokpop.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/pkl6fkv

The biggest problem for the indie band ‘Red Velvet’ is that the law is on SME’s side here because the facts are that the indie band ‘Red Velvet’ did not get the rights to the name and not having the funds to do so does not matter to the courts. This is where the ethical reasoning comes into play. Some people say it would be fair for the bigger label to understand the indie band’s situation and pick a new name. It’s not impossible because there will be new girl groups in the future with new names. I’m sure this isn’t the last girl group SME will be debuting. However, SME has probably decided they won’t change the name and will go along with it. SNSD made their recent comeback with “Mr.Mr.”, which is also the name of a Kpop boy group. Some people found it out that they did not choose a different name and how search engine results would now show the song instead of the group in the top results. I believe there was an issue with a ‘Mr.Mr.’ (group) diss track to SNSD, but that’s a different topic. Diss tracks in the Korean entertainment industry will be discussed another time, but this situation was about frustration on the group’s part. The point I made above about the SME and the ethical reasoning is echoed by a music industry official in the same Soompi.com article when he said, “SM is a major music agency. They won’t fight with an indie band. This kind of thing happens a lot in the music industry, and [in the past] even if there wasn’t any legal claim, they took an ethical stance and the issues were resolved smoothly.” This means the big label is generally expected to take the high ground and find a new name for their group. It basically means they were nice and decided to respect the smaller artist. That wasn’t exactly what happened this time.

The outspoken indie band member, Ha Hee Soo, met with SM Entertainment and a deal was apparently reached. SME’s statement on the deal was quoted as “We had a meeting with the band Red Velvet and decided to just keep the names as they are. We are now able to continue with Red Velvet’s debut schedule as planned, and we thank the band Red Velvet.” That means both sides will use the name ‘Red Velvet’, but promotion periods will just be different to avoid confusion. That does nothing for search engine results or general confusion, but it’s something. I do see SM Entertainment having control over who goes first when promoting, so the indie band ‘Red Velvet’ will have to watch SME to make sure they don’t collide promotional periods. This meeting was most likely one-sided with SM Entertainment outright refusing to change their name. It was probably a damaging (though not too much) move to demand the indie band use a new name, so SME decided to let them use the name too. I would not get too comfortable if I was the indie band ‘Red Velvet’ because they might find themselves in some kind of legal trouble later on, if they become successful enough. Forget the odds right now. If it does happen, then I suspect SM Entertainment will find a problem with them using the name. Do you believe SME would let an indie group use a name they got legal rights to when that group starts to become tougher competition? I highly doubt it, but let’s see how this situation unfolds for both groups from here on out.

Here is the MV for “Happiness” (행복) from SME’s ‘Red Velvet’! (Live Version included)

Here is the indie band ‘Red Velvet’s “The Day After You Left (헤어진 다음날)!

 

 

Malicious Rumors Force Sulli’s Hiatus

I apologize for not blogging for a while, but I have been sick and unable to do too much moving around. I guess it was from flying, which I had not done in a while. I’m feeling better now, but it seems I’m feeling better when a certain idol is starting to feel worse. f(x)’s Sulli has finally taken enough bashing from those annoying “keyboard warriors” a.k.a netizens and she is going on a company approved hiatus. I’m putting it that way because I need it to be clear that she is not deciding to run away and hide in her room, especially when some people feel she is abandoning her group. The power of words are truly intense and this time showed their power when used in a negative sense. However, this situation started from last year and some people were even starting to forget it. I guess the end of this year is the time for once forgotten scandals to come back. I hope it ends here, but let’s see how it began.

choiz_sullidate

Holding hands is something most people believe only couples do, so a male celebrity walking hand-in-hand with a female celebrity definitely causes people to suspect a relationship. It’s not suspicious when two people of the same gender hold hands, but it’s a different story when it’s a male and a female. At least that’s what some Korean culture videos state.

[Source: Soompi.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/lba95tl

The photo above shows Sulli (left) and Choiza walking in a vacant alley on what was described by TV Report as a “morning date”. The time they stated the date took place was 10AM, which is pretty early to meet up with someone. That alone does not make me think they are in a relationship, but it would fit the profile of two people secretly dating. That early in the morning and the location are good choices for people who feel they would not be discovered together. However, celebrities should know better and the “sibling-like relationship” story does not sell well either. Netizens, with all their free time, immediately started looking for any clues to prove their relationship is real. I don’t recall a time when netizens ever worked hard to disprove a relationship rumor. If they don’t want it to be true, then it seems they just bash the idol they dislike or post mean comments about the relationship in general. Perhaps the netizens who work so hard to prove it act this way because they get to bash after they have their “evidence” or they leave it out there for others to bash, which makes them just as bad.

Disapproval of a celebrity couple generally comes from either a pre-existing pairing of one celebrity in the couple with a different celebrity due to a drama/movie or just general fan preference with a different celebrity. Sometimes it is due to jealousy from fans wishing to be the one with their celebrity crush, but that goes into sasaeng territory. DO NOT ENTER. Some fans just reject the relationship of one of the pair’s looks alone, despite fans having no right to play matchmaker for celebrities. If they want to marry a waitress, taxi driver or a random foreigner, then that is there choice. I went off on a side note there, but it relates to a bigger issue that connects here. SM Entertainment, who are not known for the best excuses, were quoted on the Soompi article as saying “He is only her close oppa-like friend and sunbae. Because they are close they occasionally meet up.” That basically means SM Entertainment is claiming Sulli and Choiza are close friends in the industry, so they meet like friends do. That would be fine, if they weren’t holding hands at 10 in the morning. I thought it was just a case of two very close friends who just messed up thinking they could act this close and not get caught. I still have my doubts, but Sulli and Choiza should have known it is better to be safe than sorry.

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The best thing to do with a dating rumor is to let it burn out naturally. If it is untrue, then just act normally and that will show. If it is true, then just be more careful to hide it or just admit it. People will eventually move on, but things can get chaotic when one of the couple is an idol in a popular girl group. That case calls for avoiding the topic, until you have a solid plan. Carelessly mentioning the scandal because you can handle it does not help, but MCs can be just as much to blame in that case.

[Source: Koreaboo.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/nfmvyzs

Rumors are hard to deal with in general and there is no guaranteed way to handle them.  SM Entertainment (SME) is known in the fan community to deny and let a rumor fade away on its own, which is why SME’s confirmation of Tiffany and Taeyeon’s relationships took some people by surprise. It is usually best to admit to dating rumors when they are true because netizens will activate their “Sherlock Holmes” mode and find any evidence they can find. If the couple have had any signs, no matter how subtle, then they should admit to dating because lying only makes fan angry and the situation worse. The problem is when there are strong indications the rumor is true, but both sides continue to deny it. Denying the rumor sees fans bashing the idols because they already decided it was true and fans who defend the idols. Admitting the dating rumor is true usually sees more bashing fans than fans who support them, which includes previous defending fans silencing themselves because they were wrong defending a lie. It might be a lie when both celebrities deny a true relationship, but it is not without a reason. Fans overreact and often negatively to celebrity relationships, especially when at least one idol is involved. Fans blatantly ignore this and go straight to the deception part, which is not fair. They are proving the point of those who decided it was better to deny it. If you are in the entertainment industry, then it is very likely that you have heard the rumors and maybe even know the truth. Most celebrities will not add any unnecessary stress to their lives and stay quiet, but MCs are a bit different. MCs will ask questions about the dating rumors depending on the format of the show. If it is a show like ‘Radio Star’ or ‘War of the Words’, then you should expect it to come up. I’m pretty sure most of us still remember the uncomfortable episode of ‘Radio Star’ when Goo Hara of KARA was pushed to the point of frustration when constantly asked about her break up. MCs know the situation could be uncomfortable for the celebrity in question, but they also know that is what people are interested in now. It’s all about ratings, so they ask what people will listen in to hear. This is where quick wit is helpful.

There are ways to divert attention to a new topic or play down the topic in general. If an MC asks Choiza about Sulli, then Choiza can say he feels bad she is suffering from netizen attacks online and that he hopes everyone supports Sulli in these tough times. That is all and Choiza can finish by saying he does not want to talk about it anymore out of respect for Sulli. That helps fans see he is trying to help lessen the negative attention Sulli is getting and it shows that Choiza respects Sulli. Some MCs will still push for more information on their relationship, but it won’t be as blunt because that finishing statement makes it seem like pushing for more information is disrespectful to Sulli. Diverting attention, especially if an MC pushes for more information, can be done by Choiza standing by the statements both companies made and claiming that is all there is to the situation. A quote like “There is nothing more to this situation and that is all” would do. Any more insisting by the MCs will be met with repetition and producers will eventually signal them to move on. No producer wants to waste precious time on “It’s just as I said the last time”, so this method can work. I mention Choiza talking to MCs because it is mostly him on variety shows now and keeping Sulli away from those shows is best. It is best to keep all f(x) members away from those shows because they will get pressured for information too. “Red Light” will get completely ignored for Sulli’s situation and we don’t want another situation like Goo Hara had before. However, recent accounts of this situation being mentioned by Choiza show he did not take the path I talked about above and this is causing even more problems.

Choiza’s Rep Provides More Detail on Star’s Wallet Containing Photos of Sulli

The situation with Choiza and Sulli came back into the light because Choiza lost his wallet, which contained photos of Sulli in them. These were not just photos a fan would have, but also photobooth photos that show closeness. Someone found the wallet and returned it, but they also saw fit to publish the photos online. That is the story as it appears and surely the person had to know this would cause problems for both sides. Returning the wallet was a good deed, but publishing the photos was definitely underhanded. 

[Source: Soompi.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/n4s5x3b

Shows like “Yoo Heeyeol’s Sketchbook” and tvN’s “SNL Korea” are not necessarily shows where such a topic would come up and they a guest is not likely to be constantly pressed for information. However, it appears Choiza decided to bring up the situation with Sulli in a light-hearted manner. His thinking was probably along like lines of “If I make the situation seem like it’s no big deal, then people will let it go”. That could not have been more untrue and “humorously” bringing it up only made things worse. His label, Amoeba Culture, had previously stated they had nothing to say about the wallet issue and the overall situation with Sulli. This would have worked well for both sides because Choiza could easily avoid any discussion on the topic by stating he will stand by his label’s decision and Sulli could promote f(x)’s comeback song “Red Light”. This is where some MCs did not help the situation at all.

Both Yoo Heeyeol and Yoo Saeyoon brought up the scandal through various segments of SNL Korea, which eventually saw Choiza giving concerned reactions and even stating on Yoo Saeyoon’s segment “I thought we weren’t going to do this” when the segment was still talking about Choiza’s love line. These reactions seem to have come after the initial fan backlash at Choiza laughing with the issue and receiving gifts like a wallet chain, which show attention is still being given to the scandal. f(x) was promoting “Red Light” and that caused the scandal to lose attention in favor of the long awaited f(x) comeback. However, Choiza appeared on variety shows and this gave MCs only one target to get information from during the time. The wallet chain gift was not Choiza’s idea, so that is more a fault on Yoo Heeyeol who gave the gifts and Choiza eventually said that the entire nation was giving him a hard time with the scandal. This is a reference to the negative netizen attention, but some fans are blaming Choiza for being careless with his wallet and not realizing how much damage the scandal was doing to Sulli from the start. Some people believe the MCs are just doing their jobs and being funny, but I have always believed there is a time and place for everything. The jokes have caused a problem with f(x)’s comeback promotions and Sulli’s involvement with the entertainment industry, so I believe it was better to have not even referenced to the scandal at all.

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When it rains, it pours. The situation has gone from a “rainstorm scandal” to a full fledged “hurricane scandal”. The rumors have gone from as small as dating to as large as pregnancy, which reminds me of the pregnancy rumors IU went through a while back. Sulli’s absence from a “Red Light” performance was explained as an absence due to illness and some netizen decided to make it out to be due to pregnancy. Now we face a situation so bad that it has forced Sulli into a break from the entertainment industry and f(x) into an end to “Red Light” promotions. 

[Source: Koreaboo.com} Link: http://tinyurl.com/op4whx4

Malicious rumors are terrible to deal with and they can often force a celebrity to lay low from the public eye for a while. Some celebrities fight back, but that is usually saved for veteran idols, solo artists and actors/actresses. Idols in groups often keep quiet because their actions affect their group and younger idols might receive backlash for speaking so boldly when they just came into the entertainment industry not long ago. This time the rumors have gone far enough to drive Sulli from the public eye of the entertainment industry and f(x)’s comeback promotion are going with her. SME’s official statement says “Sulli is tired and has been showing pain because of the rumors and hateful comments towards her and said she would like to take a break from her activities.” It was also stated that f(x) would stop “Red Light” promotions, but various members will be going into solo activities. The other members of f(x) were mentioned to be attending the SMTOWN concert in Seoul on August 15th, but it is unclear if Sulli is included in the group. It seems awfully close to have her back for the concert, but we will see what happens between now and then. No action in a scandal is without a netizen reaction and this decision has received some interesting responses. Naturally there are some stupid responses mixed in, but that’s to be expected from the internet. The golden rule of treat others as you would have them treat you is something a lot of netizens don’t seem to understand and negativity continues to spread.

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Netizens can be so cruel, but that’s what happens when mean comments are supported by like minded people and the internet provides anonymity for bullies. Posting malicious rumors usually goes to the Cyber Crime Division, but mean comments alone are not illegal. This means the targeted idol needs to be strong and receive support from those closest to them. This means Sulli needs f(x) and her loyal fans more than ever to get through this scandal.

[Source: Koreaboo.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/k5seeoy

There is always a mix of supportive and condemning comments on SNS when an idol gets into a scandal. This time is no different, but the supportive comments also have their share of negativity. Some fans are showing their support of Sulli by placing the blame on Choiza by referring to his mentioning of the scandal on shows, which was called reckless. The photo above shows an article on ONSEN, which had that sentiment as it’s top comment. The reported third comment was “What becomes of the other members who prepared so hard”, which refers to the sudden halt to f(x) promotions for “Red Light”. It is true the situation is unfortunate for not only hurting Sulli, but hurting the efforts of f(x) during their long awaited comeback. The following comment was a bit less supportive by saying “I waited one year…”, which only shows a lack of understanding for the situation. I completely understand feeling let down after waiting for your favorite idol group to make a comeback after a year and then being told they have to stop promotions early. That is easy to sympathize with for any Kpop fan, but it also shows said fan is only  concerned with being entertained by the group and lacks concern for their well-being. It should not matter if Sulli is such a fan’s bias or even if said fan doesn’t like her. SME has come to the conclusion  that f(x) stopping their promotions is best to help Sulli recover from this scandal and f(x) is going along with it. The comeback was not cancelled and there are stages of them performing live, so the situation there is not as bad as it could have been. It is definitely unfair that f(x) is being affected in a such a way by this scandal, but this is the situation we are dealing with now. Unsupportive comments only give way to more negativity and such a comment could be viewed by Sulli or any f(x) member, which would not help them feel better at all. They do see these comments, so be careful what you post. (-_-)

Other comments mention how weird SM is lately with scandals and other issues, which is joined by comments stating SM Entertainment should pursue hate comment posters and those who spread malicious rumors. I would like to say they are already doing that, but SME has made no such announcement on that topic to my knowledge. Some people feel they were right about Sulli hiding when SME claimed she was sick and others even begin to question if she wanted to become a celebrity of her own free will. That kind of comment stems from a belief that Sulli is hiding because she can’t handle the negative attention, which such a netizen believes she should be able to handle as a celebrity. This is taking from the double standard for public figures and private citizens, which is not fair. It is true that public figures knowingly open themselves up to more criticism than a private citizen, but that does not mean they should take it in without issue. Idols/celebrities are people who feel and get their feelings hurt like anyone else. Malicious rumors can drive them into depression just like a private citizen, but the difference is they take more on than the average citizen and the double standard gives them few options to respond. I’m fairly certain Sulli would love to tell everyone to stop and leave her alone, but that would not work well for an idol like her. It might be hard, but try to be more understanding when others are going through hard times. It shouldn’t be hard in the first place and netizens have yet to learn this lesson.

The most random and, as I believe, stupid comment was one that stated “T-ara is really great..”. This was met with confused reactions on social media sites and other comments that said such a comment would start a fan war, which was followed by agreements that such a comment was unnecessary.  It was definitely unnecessary and it would start a fan war between “Queens” (T-ara fans) and Aff(x)tions (f(x) fans). That comment is likely a reference to the bullying scandal T-ara had a while back with former member Hwayoung. The comment is likely saying that their scandal is nothing compared to the current scandal that has negatively affected f(x). That is the height of stupidity when it comes to comments concerning this scandal. It is unhelpful and rude, which definitely leads to fan wars online. That is not what is needed now or ever, so such comments should never be posted.

In the end, f(x) has worked hard and I have seen a good amount of support among the members of the group when they need it. I’m sure Sulli is being supported by the rest of f(x), her entertainment industry friends and her family. The fans are a powerful force and they should be supporting her too. No finger pointing at Choiza, MCs or anyone else. No conspiricy theories or anything that spread negativity because it comes back to the scandal with a negative spin on it. Only supportive comments help and leave it at that. Overwhelm SNS  with supportive comments for Sulli and f(x) or don’t say anything at all. Be there for her and leave it at that. I’ve said this before and use this as your motto for this scandal. ‘Just support Sulli or stay quiet’. It’s that simple. Spread the love and keep it that way.

Here is the video where the pictures came from.

Here is “Red Light”, which f(x) worked hard to make for fans.

“Red Light” live and with all five (members)!

What do you think of this scandal?

 

 

 

 

 

Kpop Travel Playlist! (with MVs)

There are a lot of things I could talk about, but travel plans always take up most of my time. I decided to share my Kpop travel playlist and see what everyone thought. If you have a Kpop travel playlist, then feel free to share. I promise longer and more thought-provoking posts in the future. This playlist will be my top ten because I have many full length albums in my phone. It’s Kpop songs for traveling time! ^_^

The picture speaks for itself. \^u^/

1) 2NE1-Crush (Korean/Japanese)

2NE1’s ‘Crush’ acts like a rallying song for Blackjacks to me. It’s mostly the “Nolja/Nolza” chant at the end, but the entire song radiates the fierceness that drew me to 2NE1. It’s a fantastic song for any Blackjack or appreciator of fierce ladies. I enjoy both the Korean and Japanese version, so it’s a win-win for me. ^^

2) Kahi-It’s Me

I was new to Kahi when ‘It’s Me” came out because I had never really listened to After School before, which would have alerted me to Kahi’s existence. My love for fierce ladies is not hidden, so ‘It’s Me’ is the perfect song for me to listen to when I am traveling. Something about fierce music makes me suddenly walk with more confidence and feel empowered. The power of music is great and so are Kahi’s abs. I need to work out more. ><

3) Ailee-Singing Got Better

Ailee has been through a lot from moving from her home in the U.S. to Korea and that unfortunate scandal not long ago, but she is tough. The song ‘Singing Got Better’ comes soon after that scandal and showed her amazing ability to stay strong and bounce back from tough situations. The title gives way to plenty of puns, but the vocals are fantastic and I don’t believe anyone telling the truth can deny that. The MV has an interesting plot, which can be linked back to a certain event I just thought of now. Anyway, the song is powerful and a wonderful display of Ailee’s vocals.

4) G.NA-G.NA’s Secret

I have a soft spot for G.NA because she is fun and has a bubbly personality, despite some people feeling she should act more mature for a woman her age. I don’t understand that at all because she is only 26 and being young at heart doesn’t hurt anyone. I like ‘G.NA’s Secret’ because she is showing her cute charm instead of her sexy charm, which she has shown before. It’s sweet and shows a side of a girl in love that actually does exist, which means G.NA could act the same way under the right circumstances. 

5) Jun Hyoseong (Hyoseong)-Goodnight Kiss

We go from using cute charm to flat-out seduction and at a wedding no less. The MV shows Hyoseong’s sexy charm in her dance segments and through the plot, which seems to be in the imagination of the groom. If I had to summurize it, then I would say Hyoseong’s seductive charms have the groom imagining himself with her and eventually trying to kiss her. Naturally this has the “It’s a dream” theme going for it, so it all falls apart at the end. In other words, he “wakes up” and she just walks away with a smirk. He doesn’t cheat physically, but I guess he did mentally. Does that count? Does it matter? Why am I asking these questions? I just find the “Boom boom” and “Zoom zoom” parts funny. It’s definitely catchy, so that helps when there is time to spare on my travels.

6) SoyouXJunggigo-Some

This song is very sweet and has the same catchy appeal that ‘Goodnight Kiss’ had. It balances the vocals of Soyou and Junggigo (what a name) well and the MV is quite sweet. Sure the actors are not Soyou and Junggigo, but it still works. The song has an innocent romance theme going and it’s very catchy when you let the song sink in. ~^^~

7) Gain-Truth or Dare

It’s Gain, so you better be ready for something sexy. This does not mean the song has not meaning. Actually, most of Gain’s songs seem to have a deep meaning to them. “Bloom” was about sexual awakening, “FxxK You” was apparently about date rape or something like that and “Truth or Dare” is about misunderstandings. That last one might be only about Gain or girls who act like she does on stage because there is a version with a mock interview, which shows false beliefs of Gain. The lyrics in the song talk about misunderstandings and how rumors might not be so bad. The brass sounds really make me love this song. 🙂

8) AOA-Miniskirt

I didn’t really listen to ‘Miniskirt’ when it came out, but I did give it a try for a post a while back about girl groups and the sudden surge of sexy concepts. Very few people will deny that AOA is filled with beautiful girls. Miniskirt eventually gets to be fun to listen to and the MV definitely hits the “sexy nail” on the head. You might feel funny with the amount of eye contact they make with the camera in the MV, but you will get over it eventually (if you are that kind of person). There is a dance practice version called “Eye Contact” version, which I call “Make Eye-Love with the Camera” version. Try it out and see how you like that. ><

9) AKMU-200%

It’s Akdong Musician (AKMU), so you know the song will be sweet. It’s the “National Siblings” who I believe are also the winners of “Kpop Star 2”. ‘200%’ is a sweet song about unrequited love and perhaps unexpressed love and it’s for a good reason. The guy in question has a girlfriend already, so our female lead (Lee Soo-hyun) must watch him from a far. Close enough to see him, but far away enough not to be seen catching glances by his girlfriend. She is around them so often, so I don’t know how the couple didn’t figure it out already. Soo-hyun pretends to be in the situations that the male lead is with his girlfriend, such as eating ice cream or dancing.The latter part of the MV unfolds the screen to show the girlfriend is actually doing those things with the boyfriend and the power of perspective was fooling us the entire time. What I get from this is a cute girl can “observe” her crush from afar, but a guy would probably get a restraining order. Oh well. It’s the world of Kpop MVs, so let’s ignore that and enjoy the sweet tune of unrequited love. ><;;;

10) 2NE1-Happy

The point of this song is pretty obvious from the title itself. ‘Happy’ is a great “pick-me-up” song and it never fails to make me happy. The MV is somewhat bubbly and carries the message of 2NE1 wishing everyone happiness, even if they are not happy themselves. That is certainly a powerful message when you think about it. Happiness of the fans being important even when the artist might not be happy at the time is an issue that is argued about in the Kpop fan community. This songs shows that some artists really do value the happiness of their fans more than themselves at least sometimes. If you just want to enjoy the message of being happy, then that is good too. That’s why I picked this song and that rounds up my top ten.

If you have your own top ten, then share away and I’ll return after my trip. I’ll post a pre-travel picture before I go and I’ll see you Kpoppers later. ^_^

Blackjacks Rally Behind Park Bom!

I normally don’t blog about 2NE1 because I want to be a blogger without bias. I have no problem standing by my idols when they are in the right and supporting them if they need to improve after a fault. I am writing this entry to show support for Park Bom (Bommie noona) and express my feelings about the recent news concerning her. It is true that I do not know her personally, but I have been a Blackjack since 2NE1’s debut and I have followed them closely. I am proud to call myself a Blackjack and be part of YG Family, which is known for its strong bonds. The aspect of this situation I am disappointed in is the reactions I have read about some netizens online. The netizens in Kpop news are often assumed to be South Korean and this is used by some international fans to prove that Korean netizens are worse. This is not always the case and I’m not going to assume the same thing, but the netizens in question are the type I usually see in news labeled as a “scandal”. They condemn the person in question, demand an unreasonable punishment and vanish if the person is proven innocent. Sometimes they even come back as a person condemning others for what they did before all the facts were out.  The issue this time involves medication/drugs and that is a not an issue that is taken lightly in South Korea like most places in the world.

Park Bom (Bommie) is known as a gentle and kind woman by Blackjacks, BOMbshells (Park Bom fans) and YG Family stans. Responses, to name a few, to this news about “drug smuggling” were “No real fan would believe it” and “Bommie would only smuggle food ><“.

[Source: hellokpop.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/q4v3th4

Park Bom is the oldest member of the 2NE1, but has the bubbliest personality for a women her age. This is not to be confused with immaturity because Bommie has shown her wisdom in knowing when to act serious, such as an instance when she stopped a security personnel near her from shoving a fan away.  This drug smuggling case came out in 2010 when Park Bom was trying to come back into South Korea with Amphetamine. This drug is usually given to people with disorders pertaining to the nervous system, such as narcolepsy or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). I cannot find the footage from 2NE1 TV when Bommie was sick in L.A. or articles on why she was prescribed with amphetamine, but the facts state there was a prescription. This is where the issue becomes difficult. It is accepted that the trip was from the U.S. to South Korea and 2NE1 did take a trip to L.A. in 2010. The drug is heavily regulated in the U.S. and it is said it can only be prescribed once a month, but it can be prescribed if a doctor decides the drug is necessary. However, South Korea appears to have a law about amphetamine that says the drug is banned in the country under all conditions. This means that a prescription for the drug does not allow it to be given to a patient in South Korea. That is fine, but the prescription was given in a country that allows the drug to be prescribed. This gets into international law concerning drugs and how a prescription can carry over from a country that allows it to one that does not. The case was registered by prosecutors because they need a records of potential and actual incidents, but it was dropped when the prescription was found. This probably means that the prescription allowed the medication to be used in the country or it was taken away and no charges were filed. The situation is that Park Bom was given a prescription for amphetamine in a country where it was legal and the medical orders had her on it for a time that extended back into her return to South Korea. One cannot suddenly ignore a doctor’s orders because the medicine they were prescribed is not allowed somewhere else. This is probably what the courts decided when they looked at the prescription and the case was dropped. It was not really a smuggling case, but a patient following a doctor’s orders and expecting the law back home to understand. I am Blackjack, so I do automatically side with my 2NE1 noonas and that is natural for any Kpop fan. I make sure to show my support in relation to the facts and my knowledge of the person in question. I know Bommie noona is a kind woman and the facts showed that it was just a rumor, so I  showed my support by stating I would stand by her. When the facts showed there was a prescription and the case was dropped four years ago, I got bolder by stating those spreading it as if the smuggling allegations were terrible for doing so. I never talk down to others, but I do defend my idols when I know the truth. There is nothing wrong with defending your idols, especially when the facts are on your side. However, some people use coincidence with their suspicions to say the cruelest things and this is happening for some netizens in this situation.

Netizens showing up in Kpop articles can be shown saying general support comments and criticisms, but their criticisms are generally harsh. Idols breaking the law in South Korea is deemed even more serious than usual because they are public figures with a lot of influence over the youth, which makes drug crimes even worse. However, netizens are usually quick to judge without all the facts and that starts heated arguments and fan wars.

[Source: Hellokpop.com] Link: http://tinyurl.com/p8s26wd

The netizens in these situations remind me of Youtube or Facebook comment makers. You know those people who love to comment “First” or “Second”. Sometimes you see many people commenting “First” because they posted as someone else was posting to be first and then sarcastic remarks come in to those comments. That shows the odd fascination with having your voice out there before anyone else and hopefully being recognized for it. There is this deep analysis about this habit with competition, recognition and how it relates to human nature, but that is not why you all are here. I also don’t have time to go into it, so let’s move on. The point is netizens have this habit as well and it cause a lot of grief. These netizens decide they want to comment right away to have their voice heard, which means they are often berating someone based on little or no facts. These netizens are often supported by like minded netizens because they are also trying to get their voice out as soon as possible. Few people care about the runner who comes in 5th or 10th and this can be the case for people commenting later on. Comments earlier often get more “likes” or positive votes because they were out longer and during a time when like minded people were online. People also get bored with an issue as time goes on, which makes it seem like more people believe earlier comments because of the support they had. Netizens in the situation are making ridiculous requests like calling for Park Bom’s “retirement” and even jail time by calling her a criminal. YG Entertainment is not a label to cause problems and they often shrug off issues they know will pass when their artists have done no wrong. If YG Entertainment wanted to pursue legal options, then it might be possible against those who are stating that it is a fact that Park Bom is a criminal or those who are spreading the rumors as fact.  Many people are pointing their fingers at Kpop gossip site ‘AllKpop’, which lost a lot of support after the “Ailee Photo Incident”. Their site associates the sudden revival of this issue with the rising tension over the South Korean government’s handling of the Sewol Ferry Tragedy funds, which some people say is a diversion from the mishandling of those funds. This has caused some people to attack AllKpop again and create a hashtag to abandon the site called “#UNFOLLOWALLKPOP”. This blogger left AllKpop after the photo incident mentioned above and written about before. I have not joined in the group of those using this hastag because I see many sites talking about it, but I noticed only AllKpop associating it with the Sewol Ferry Tradegy funds. I will warn people that AllKpop is really a gossip site and it should not be relied on as a news source. One should always check multiple sources and gather their thoughts after that. Even so, I will not trust news I am told from that site. Comments made condemning Park Bom on sites like Naver got thousands of “likes” and positive votes, even though there is proof the case was dropped after the discovery of a prescription. Some netizens don’t care about the prescription and condemn her due to the ban on the medicine in South Korea. I have mentioned why I support Park Bom and how the courts probably decided to drop the case before. The main point is the case was dropped after the discovery of the prescription, which means it did matter to the courts. This issue was brought up by news media, so it is suspicious why they would do it now. The spreading of the news is on various netizens and Kpop news sites, which is clearly done to get views and create a buzz in the Kpop community. My final message to all those reading this is that the courts decided to drop the case because the drugs were being used for medical purposes. Park Bom is a wonderful person and not a fool, so please believe her innocence and do not hurt her feelings more than they are likely to have been hurt by now. Blackjacks and the rest of YG Family supports Park Bom (Bommie) through this situation and unite to protect her from harm.

 

*Hastags being used to support Bommie in this situation are “#RightBesideYou박봄” and “#WeBelieveInParkBom”.

Here is some sweet Park Bom (Bommie) moments for everyone. This is what Blackjacks and YG stans are trying to protect. A wonderful woman with a wonderful soul.