• http://twitter.com/dewaanifordrama dewaanifordrama

    Couldn’t agree more!

  • idontknoe

    I completely agree,but in the Han Yeseul case the person who suffered the most was probably Eric.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/YQ53WK5K4DPXQ5DIBKDELB6WPE Camille

      I understand why Han Yeseul did what she did, but I thought it was damn selfish for her to do so, especially since there’s a whole freaking cast and crew suffering the consequences of her actions.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/3O73S4PB7NZRSRVPOOCIH3ZG34 Susan

        If it’s true that she was only getting 1-2 hours of sleep for weeks, I’d say she probably wasn’t in the most rational state of mind. Everyone else working on the drama was probably clocking the same hours, but then again, different people have different breaking points, and perhaps she reached hers. Yes, it certainly wasn’t the best choice for her to make. But all I can think about is just how far she was pushed to have taken such drastic action.
        Thank you for the article. The Korean entertainment industry really needs to get their act together and start treating these celebrities as human beings. A lot of times I wonder if anyone with any power in the industry even has a conscience. Just hearing about the horrible working conditions of these celebrities casts a pall over every drama I watch and I feel even worse for idols.

        • idontknoe

          But why go the the US to only return 24hrs later? If she was that tired the planeride would have killed her.

          • MAR_M3anie

            Or maybe she panicked and decided to come back, or someone convinced her to come back.  I have seen stuff like that happen.

      • taestits

        Then what would you have done in that situation, running on only one or two hours of sleep? You’re gonna tell me you would have gone on working? Fuck no. She wasn’t selfish, she was tired.

  • Black_Plague

    Fully agree with this – and there needs to be more attention from the police as well, considering the Open World Ent. case had multiple victims of sexual abuse.

    The ROK government also has much issues (if not even more bigger issues) to deal with its hands, especially with the economy, political corruption, military affairs and most of all, the North Korean threat so it’s relieving and also interesting to see that they’ve finally given some attention to the K-entertainment industry.

    Considering the harsh nature of the industry itself though, I wouldn’t think it’d hurt to place exclusively strict regulations on it. Anyone who considers 18 hours of work as ‘capped’ or ‘limited’ needs the nearest policeman in the street to give them a reality check with a baton on the head. I can’t say much for the smaller agencies out there but all the bigger ones as well as those such as MBC, SBS and KBS can survive just fine even with the proposed limits – they need to stop being big fucking crybabies about the whole thing and just get over it.

    The government’s intervening for a damn good reason, despite the slow response. The agencies and broadcasting companies brought the mess upon themselves in the first place and clearly showed no sign of cleaning it up.

    While it does look like actors and actresses are finally getting something, what about idols? Or idols that are also actors/actresses? What about them? Anyone could figure easily that idols are also just as terribly overworked. Will they be getting some attention from the government too?

    I’d imagine certain companies may throw quite a fit about this as well - notoriously, CCM, considering it was the one that made quite a big whopping fuss about Kara’s lawsuit back in 2010.

    Hope things turn out for the better.

  • http://www.facebook.com/tunmi Turayo Tijani

    I really hope the 18-hour cap also somehow extends to idols. It is sad that they only get 1-2 hours of sleep, or numbers of that nature, when a person can actually hallucinate and eventually die from not enough sleep. It’s a scary thing.

  • YourYG Bias

    When will these companies get the message? When one of their people finally dies on their feet? Probably not. Nothing will change unless a percentage of the industry that is over 50% dies within a week due to exhaustion. Or some other unlikely scenario. 

    Good thing Asians reproduce like mice. These inhumane working conditions and Korea’s suicide rate should be reducing the population like crazy. They need to adopt a more modern mindset to Korea’s entire workforce. This is getting ridiculous.

    • Black_Plague

      South Korea’s birth rate however, is among the world’s lowest, only higher than Japan, if memory serves correct. If anything, it’s the aging population issue that’s the prime cause to South Korea’s population getting smaller.

      Personally, the only thing that will make these companies get the message is if the government starts making exclusively strictly enforced laws and policies targetted towards the entertainment business (while also increasing police awareness there) or something very drastic comparable to the former military regime under former president Chun Doo-hwan back in the 80s (supposedly, even the chaebols were terrified of him).

      Alternatively, if currently extremely popular groups like SNSD and 2NE1 have a major fallout with their agencies as well, it would definitely bring in heavier attention from the govt.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jessica-Cottle/1297801414 Jessica Cottle

        I agree, but not about SNSD or 2NE1. They are no doubt some of the most popular and widely known idol groups but DBSK disbanded at the height of their popularity. They were HUGE (still are extremely popular) and these issues still exist although the new contracts are certainly much better because of JYJ’s lawsuit.

        • Black_Plague

          Good point, but then again, what other group comparable to DBSK’s popularity at the time had split from their agency to a level that brought massive controversy nation-wide?

          Ever since DBSK’s demise, public awareness had increased overall, and following DBSK, was Han Geng from SuJu and KARA – from highly popular groups - the latter facing a high potential of being disbanded at the time whereas in Han Geng’s case, SM’s public image pretty much turned into a negative one again.

          Considering all those past events, I’ve no doubt that if today’s more popular groups have a huge split with their agencies, it would bring more attention from the govt (or at least raise the chances of it).

          At this rate, T-ara’s the most likely to follow.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jessica-Cottle/1297801414 Jessica Cottle

             Hmmm, I can definitely see your point.I guess I’m just a bit more guarded now haha

  • muggle87

    the whole entertainment industry needs make over. its ridiculous that it gotten that bad. they should put in laws to prevent companies from abusing their employees. 

    in my country, the dept of labor would have been all over them.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/YQ53WK5K4DPXQ5DIBKDELB6WPE Camille

    I wish that at the very least, they do what Japan does and ban minors from working/filming after a certain time at night. KARA’s Jiyoung benefits from that every time KARA’s in Japan.

    • dearsnowflower

      I thought Korea does that too, no?

  • whirlypop

    Granted there could be some changes, but they get paid 50,000-100,000 dollars per episode of that series. They have production assistants who follow their every whim, a manager who practically acts like their personal nanny and basically people who do things for them. Their life is a breeze compared to the rest of the filming staff who spends exactly the same time and do the actual tiring, manual work, but gets paid 1% of what they’re earning.

    • idontknoe

      Yep, fans are always in an uproar about their artists getting rest, but never even think of all the people behind the scenes worker harder, longer hours, and getting shit pay, and sometimes have to deal with the crazies so that the stars still get to look good.

    • muggle87

      only the really big shots get that amount of money.

  • Khaddie

    I don’t know how many wake up calls an industry needs. Hardly a month goes by without someone (usually a young actress) committing suicide. Maybe if a major group like SNSD lost a member, God forbid. But actually, it’s not like DBSK’s split did anything to show the unfairness that goes on and make them react, other than stopping companies from making contracts longer than seven years.

    • Black_Plague

      Well, a member/members of a group splitting over reasons vs a member/members of a group committing suicide due to depression or/and abuse is a pretty wide gap.

      Although I think it’s safe to say that police have started to pay more attention ever since that Jang Ja Yeon case in 2009 pretty much sent all of South Korea into a national outroar.

      The press can’t really report every police case in the industry to the public so God knows how many of those evil fuckers had been caught with no journalist snooping by (then there’s the high possibility that journalists/reporters themselves can be pro-agency and are under the payroll of whatever agency they’re affiliated with).

      • Khaddie

        Good point. Though there is a lot of difference between death and a group splitting, you would have hoped the work hours published and the splitting of a group that was bringing in so much money would have stopped companies from over working their artist-if only for the fear of losing them.

        Was Jang Ja Yeon the actress from Boys over Flowers? It’s quite sad that a death is what’s needed for people to notice. And weren’t only two people prosecuted from the list she provided (if it is the BoF actress)?

        • Black_Plague

          I’d imagine that groups splitting would have only made companies to be more cautious in not getting caught and even go up to lengths of controlling their artists in even further lengths – while also glossing things over even more to avoid suspicion as much as possible.

          And yes, she was the actress from Boys Over Flowers – I’ve no doubt that a lot of those who were in her position had suffered just as much, if not more but the news simply was not reported. Granted, BOF was also a highly popular show during its time so that did get a lot of attention from the public.

          The list indeed was written by Jang herself – and it’s a terribly tragedy that only so few were prosecuted (the number is a mere 7 out of 31 subhuman scumbags) when it’s obvious all of them were at extreme fault and deserved a far more heavier punishments (castration, death penalty, life sentence etc.)

           

          • Khaddie

            This stuff just makes me angry. I wonder if any of them ever feel guilty. It doesn’t really help that do many people are completely enamoured by the pretty cotton candy sweet shell that they are sold.

            So I’m guessing the other people (or scumbags, people doesn’t seem to fit) that didn’t get prosecuted are free to find their next victims, or even set up their own entertainment company to make it easier (though if I remember correctly some of them were CEOs? )

          • Black_Plague

            It should make anyone angry actually. Power can twist people’s minds 180 degrees and history has plenty of examples alone as evidence.

            Yea, it’s safe to assume that the rest did get away scot free (or just got several hours of community service). Last I recall, the majority of them – or at least those whose names were revealed to the public, were CEOs.

  • Theorist

    I’m more wary of the younger idols.. under 18 who overworked themselves. Over time.. They should set some rules in SKorea like Japan. After 9/10pm, you’re done working. 

  • Alex O.

    I feel the same – a lot of the haters are painfully ignorant of other reasons for an idol’s “bad” behavior. Even if you try to explain, they’ll think you’re making an excuse for the idol and they’ll make just as many excuses as to why the idol is a terrible person. It’s frustrating that the only thing you can really do is ignore them.

    Also, I think it’ll be a while before the government actually enacts more laws to protect idols because entertainment industries bring in big money, and it probably helps the S. Korean economy a lot. I’m not an economist, nor am I a S. Korean citizen, but looking at how a lot of surrounding Asian countries have a lot of K-Pop/Drama fans, I’m assuming that it plays a somewhat substantial role in the S. Korean economy and stopping these companies might put profits at risk.

    Furthermore, even if the government does end up enacting more protection laws, I feel like entertainment companies would force the idols to work more anyways through blackmail. That’s just the way the industry is. Also, I feel like the entertainment companies would just bribe the government employees to prevent them from regulating the working hours. I don’t know if it happens in S. Korea a lot, but I know that in the U.S. a lot of restaurants, shops, etc. don’t follow safety procedures and sometimes those places bribe safety inspectors and successfully pass safety inspections. I’m not sure how often it happens, but I know it’s not entirely uncommon and knowing entertainment industries, I feel like it’ll be even worse since they actually have a lot of money to bribe people with.

    Example my journalism professor talked about: Station Nightclub Fire in RI. That place was bribing the safety inspector, and look what ended up happening. I got to interview a survivor of the fire and she told me that the firefighter responsible for the fire safety inspection was bribed and after the fire he wasn’t held accountable.

  • MAR_M3anie

    It reminds me a lot of what stars sometimes go through in the US.  When Dave Chapelle left his show and turned down 50 mil and went to Africa everyone said he was crazy, drug addict, etc…

    If people have time here is the Interview he did with Inside The Actors Studio, it’s an hour long but the part that’s related to this thread is here at 48 mins- http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=84NjYRTHpfU#t=2880s

    • taestits

      He really seems like a great man, it’s a shame that people speak about him the way that they do.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/VOBHN5WR2Q3MPYG2DVDKDOB3WU Lili

       thanks for the clip! i watched the entire thing, and he’s really interesting not to mention hilarious! I don’t judge him for walking away, I never have actually. Another part that relates to this thread was what he said about Hollywood. When he talked about how it’s no wonder famous people are stripping on TRL, and flipping out on the streets.

  • asianromance

    Has anyone seen that episode of Law & Order SVU guest starring Sarah Hyland as the overachiever sleep-deprived student who killed her more accomplished roommate because of the pressure and the crazies brought on by sleep-deprivation.  I’m surprised that this hasn’t happened in the idol world yet.  

    And going 17 hours without sleep is like having a 0.05 blood-alcohol level.  Basically every idol and person involved in a drama are walking and driving around drunk. 

    And people should give HYS a break.  Sure it was a bad decision to leave, but consider that fact that the lack of sleep made her the equivalent of a really drunk person.  And a drunkard makes crappy decisions (like deciding to pee in the drawers instead of into a toilet!).  And while it sucked for everyone who had to wait and see if she would return, it also brought up the issue of drama-filming sleep deprivation in the context of it being a bad thing (usually celebs go “I only got 2 hours of sleep hahahaha. glad that’s over” *smiles*).  

  • goldengluvsk2

    in my 21 years of life i’ve only experienced what is it like to only have 2 hours of sleep once and i got to say it wasnt cool at all… i was a zombie… YES literally a zombie… I felt like I was walking in my sleep because I felt SO tired!! the ONLY thing that made me feel better was the 18 hours of sleep I had the day after… thats why I panick everytime I remember idols, actresses/actors say over and over that they only have 2-5 hours of sleep per day…!!! what?!! imagine 2-5 hours of sleep almost everyday for 7 years?? how they do that?? and on top of that, theres obnoxious people that cant see beyond the tip of their noses criticizing them for looking absent on interviews, being “disrespectful” for not smiling 24/7 or calling traitors the few idols that do something to change their working conditions… and to think theres younger and younger idols debuting that will endure this is alarming…

    i dont know when the industry will recognize they have a problem… even the government looks away…! they only wait for things to calm down like in the Open World Ent. they threw the database “solution” and thats all… then, when another scandal is news then they’ll try to do something… in Han Ye Seul’s case i fear for her… after what happened she would have another job because we all know what happens to those who want to speak up about the issues n the industry, JYJ and Hangeng are clear examples and even in KARA’s case where they were rumors of their disbandment, CEO’s from another agencies were already saying that they should be “banned from the music industry and that other agencies shouldnt sign them” clearly sending a message to their own groups…  if the industry keeps thinking like this it will collapse for sure…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=513439726 Sharon Overlord

    Ya, didn’t Yoochun’s manager have a car crash because he wasn’t getting enough sleep? It was sad to see Yoochun crashing and sleeping after that drama finished. He must have been exhausted. In the past, I had a part time job and school to contend with. I wanted to keep my marks at an 80% or more, so I used to be up at night studying. Did that for a year and then I crashed. Suddenly I was just tired all the time. Luckly for me I took summer school classes so in my last year of school I only had 2 classes when I should have had 5. So I spent a lot of my time sleeping and lazing around the house. I even quit my job. 

    Recently I also reduced my sleeping hours to 4 or 5 hours for that week, and by the end of the week I felt like fainting. I have no idea how these idols manage it for this long. Im pretty sure more than half of them have issues with depression, has anxiety problems or has gone crazy. 
    These entertainment companies are really stupid. I remember watching Protect the boss and being scared for Jaejoong bc he looked so skinny and tired. His makeup could not even cover the dark circles under his eyes. He looked like a zombie. How are actors and musicians supposed to preform in that condition? I rather they not preform than see them dance like a zombie on stage. If I was an idol I would have quit years ago. Rather die than suffer from lack of sleep and not being able to enjoy my life. Idols dont seem to stop working. 

  • Lyn Prince

    “Government regulation of the entertainment industry is slow and often
    ineffectual”….because it is a huge conflict of interest. The Government also
    benefits from these dramas and kpop acts in the Korean wave.

    Hallyu has become a government sponsored and pushed system because it is now a part of Korean pride and soft power for the country of Korea. They are making tons on money in Kpop and Hallyu tourism, and selling their dramas and idols in other countries. Korean embassies are giving out Kpop posters and tickets. So this is making them money and
    giving them world recognition. The government is not never going to go too far
    …in any way that would hamper it. So they take baby steps and take care of
    low hanging fruit and useless cosmetic changes. They haven’t gotten serious
    about it.
    If they were serious…they would have child labor laws. Korea has no law that says minors can’t work past a given amount of hours in a day like Japan or the USA has. It has no law that says…children working in the entertainment business MUST attend school or be homeschooled on set if need be like the US has. So minors in Korea are working all hours of
    the day and night and some never going to school/dropping out…all in the name of
    Hallyu. Not only is this bad because you are overworking children…but these kids are with
    managers, CEO’s, PD’s majority of their time…and never with their
    parents…so it leaves them open for abuse, sexual and otherwise….because no
    one is there to protect them. And the only people around them, are people who basically see them as a product to me marketed and sold.  Nothing has been done, or is even in the
    works of being done about this situation.

    If the government was serious…it would force companies to change their contracts…so bullshit like…you can’t have a cellphone until you sell this much records, or you can
    date for 5 years, or you have to get plastic surgery or you can’t
    debut….won’t go on. And these are all real situations that idols have
    mentioned have been told to them by their companies.

    If the Korean government was serious…they would investigates, raid, and crackdown on abuses in all these companies…but they are not…because they are in bed with the CEOs, and the money men and PD’s that ruin the system. And they benefit from the system as it
    is now. They will throw people a bone every once in a while…but they will
    never seriously do it. Why do you think most idols and actors look so resigned
    to their fate…they know as long as money is being made and Hallyu is Koreas
    biggest import…the government is not going to protect them from shit. And no
    matter how much their companies push this family BS…they not going to change
    anything either because you are making them money. You are family and they take
    care of you…as long as you accept your fate and never cross them.  They might as well do their time and keep their head down…because we see what happened to people that speak up and try to fight back. 

    I don’t expect anything seriously to be done..unless something drastic happens.

  • MamaWack

    I had a internship at a hotel for 3 months, anybody who knows tourism knows that the the hotel is slavery work, I was literally on my feet from 9-5 for a whole 8 hours and then I sprained my ankle my god it was painful working on a sprain ankle because my school made it seem if we ever miss a day then we would fail (another way to add slavery) and then I had another internship just months waking up everyday for 7 in the morning and working until 5 or sometimes 6 and let me tell I was almost hitting depression and my grades showed it. The point I’m making is that some idols don’t even sleep for days that alone could drive a person to depression and imagine the amount of health issues these celebrities are having.
    Like Lyn Prince the government is benefiting from kpop and k-dramas hence the reason they are so slow to react. The amount celebrites who commit sucide in korea is staggering, it just irks me how people are ready to harm their own people for a little extra cash and power. what is giving the celebrities a few extra hours and more vacations going to do, will the company go bankrupt by letting their celebrities get at least 6 hours sleep? no, a happy and healthy celebrity are the best celebrities.
    S.Korea have so much to improve and unfortunately they are no different from the northern counterpart.

    • Black_Plague

      “S.Korea have so much to improve and unfortunately they are no different from the northern counterpart.”

      As much as SK has its own issues to deal with, saying it’s no different to its northern neighbour is preposterous and a massive overbloat.

      The people in the DPRK (save for those living in say, Pyongyang) are living in conditions several dozen times worse than those in South Korea by far. Even electricity is at shortage and there’s reports that people even eat grass and tree bark to just survive to live another day – not to mention military personnel also steal food from their own people at gunpoint. Food alone is in critical shortage and law enforcement is crooked as fuck – even the smallest bribe can make an officer turn a blind eye.

      Add in the gulag-like camps where people get sent for political reasons and the fact that DPRK military recruits also have to undergo harsh training while being poorly fed at the same time makes South Korea look like paradise.

      There’s a reason why North Koreans (or at least those with the guts to do so) flee their own country.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Nate-Broadus/100003245734823 Nate Broadus

    It frightens me to a slight extent how rigid image is taken in the South Korean entertainment industry. It is not specifically a South Korean problem alone, but I see it way more often in SK compared to other Asian countries. You can’t be pissed, you can’t be sullen, you can’t eat too much or too little (SNSD meal controversy), you can’t be too honest about “unpleasant” things (you can say whatever you want — as long as its happy and pleasing to the fans). When you add it all up, it almost sounds like you can’t be human in the SK entertainment industry — or at least you have to be one on your own time.

    In many ways, fans are responsible for this state of affairs. Fans want to revel in the image presented — pretty, handsome, perpetually smiling faces with great dance moves that are always there to perform. But too often fans forget that these idols are as imperfect as any other human being, sometimes more so. They get bored, they get silly, sometimes they get pissed (probably at each other more than we will ever know). They are human beings; I know that fact doesn’t exempt an idol from criticism in the Korean press and fandom, but Jesus Christ, that is more a flaw of fandom and press than with the idols. The only reason small incidences of apathy stand out in the first place is because idols are expected to never have any emotion that isn’t pleasing to the eye. 

    Way back in the day when I followed groups like Baby V.O.X. and S.E.S., I thought what stood out to me as good about the Korean entertainment industry was that their stars were so open and inviting about themselves. Now that I’ve grown some more and am not as naive, I realize that the image of idols as accessible stars is simply a half truth. In reality, we only get the positive, while the negative tends to get swept under the rug hastily before any camera can really reveal the truth about the real humanity of these stars. When that negative truth comes out in incidences like the ones mentioned in the article, where we learn these idols are not perfect, that they don’t always have a smile on their faces, the tendency is to lash out at them for some perceived disrespect. 

    It’s a shame, really. But what can you do? The image has to be protected at all costs.

  • http://www.michelle-chin.com/ Michelle Chin

    I remembered working part time as a sales assistant (SA) at a reputable brand and most of my shifts were 12 hour shifts. It was not easy and those 12 hours shifts can last for up to 5 consecutive days. My pay was not good either and I was most of the time, tired and stressed. Sometimes, I am so tired to the point that I steal naps inside the store room. I would stand against the piles of clothes and just sleep, standing up. 

    And that is just 12 hours. I cannot imagine 18. For me, 18 hours per day is still inhumane. So, how exactly do you sleep, eat and do basic stuff that people do? Psychologically, working 18 hours per day is just not going to give you the same efficiency as opposed to working 8 hours per day. I guess to work 18 hours per day and still feel happy, you must have a lot of optimism and determinism in you, but eventually doing this for long periods of time can really drain your ego out… 

    And like you have stated in the article, the government benefits from the Korean wave. I find this really true. It is in a way to not only recover from the national shame that they had experienced but  also functions as a bolster to their reputation in the eyes of the world. No doubt, the Hallyu is a form of soft power that can add to the psychological strength of the country. So it is going to be really hard for the government to decide on whether to protect the working rights of those who are in the entertainment industry and the national interests. 

    History seems to point that national interests seem to be the priority… So, this is tricky. Really, really tricky. 

  • http://twitter.com/suimanstudio suimanstudio

    I suppose a major lack why the government won’t take serious steps towards regulations of the entertainment industry is because it’s still just a local matter. Despite the recent well achieved global recognition – although not as significant as Korea likes to present it – the world has no real insight on the background of Hallyu.

    The Korean Wave – sadly – builds on twisted grounds in every aspect. From the sponsorship phenomena to unhealthy working conditions South Korea let it’s entertainment industry set the rules and play the game according to them without any intervention whatsoever. 

    Now, as the government is pushing Hallyu on the rest of the world they fear the ever growing number of unsatisfied entertainment workers and related scandals puts negative light on the country, possibly scaring new investors away. 

    However both sides show an amount of ignorance and hesitation: the world doesn’t seem to care for the dirt under the carpet as long as the carpet itself is clean; while South Korea hesitates to take full control over the entertainment industry and take it away from the stock companies who basically own Hallyu. I’m quite sure over the years these companies have become a major pillar of the Korean economy/financial state thus it’s not easy to deal with them. The government has to take small steps because there aren’t any alternatives to secure the missing money if these companies decide to rebel against the government. 

    If foreign investments could replace the huge Korean ones, there might be a chance for the government to actively and for all confidently oppose the entertainment industry. However as said, the world is simply not interested in the questionable parts of the Korean industry and the government is trying to calm issues instead of directly addressing them and find a straightforward solutions…

    I don’t see any major change coming our way in the next few years, although chances are many even more outragous scandals surface that might shake up the public as well…

    I don’t believe “fans” are the greater force since the amount of truly delusional and spiteful fanatics is less than the people who enjoy Hallyu AND care for the well-being of the entertainment workers. Fanatics are simply louder with their views because they generally oppose everything not fitting their own ideologies. The simple folk enjoying Hallyu is able share the space of fandom with others and instead of focusing on the differences they join to support and spread what’s common – the interest in Hallyu. 

    What this rational fandom does wrong is to not complain – Koreans to their government and respective authorities. International people also have many channels where they could express their worry or objections towards the attitudes of a company, and agency…etc from Twitter to simply blog about issues to raise awareness. 
    Yet little to no one takes the effort and instead digs it’s head into the ground – acknowledging the problem is not equal to taking action. Whenever and idol is reported to have been hospitalized I never hear of fans going to the companies Twitter, YouTube, Facebook or whatever and POLITELY ask the company to give the idol some rest…There are some channels the fandom in Korea and outside the country should take advantage of but sadly everyone is just closing an eye. Not that fan outrage would change much, but at least it would give the government more reason to take action – I doubt Korea would like the negative promotion especially on the Internet…

  • http://www.facebook.com/roan.deguzman3 Ro-an de Guzman

    I work as a 

    • Black_Plague

       “To quote KpopInfiltrated, Korea is “men’s paradise and women’s prison”.

      If Korea is a paradise for men and a prison for women, I could easily say China is heaven for men and hell for women as a comparison :)

      ” Suicide is skyrocketing and surpassing Japan, but has netizens contributed any?”

      Yes, some netizens have contributed by making things even worse considering they too have played quite a role in the suicides of certain celebrities in Korea. Assuming you’re implying Korea’s population is going down because of suicide, low birth rate and an aging population are much bigger factors.

      “I am liking SNSD, but I don’t think they could remain ‘pure’ in sexual sense, and they are likely to be pimped by their handlers.”

      Given SM’s large sphere of influence on the K-ent. industry, I find this one very highly subject to debate – pimped by their handlers? There’s no confirmed or even universally accepted evidence that they indeed have been pimped – even so, chances are it would have been from antis or tabloid newspapers themselves, who are just as unreliable as a source, not to mention that journalism in Korea alone is a bit of a joke to begin with.

      Not that SM is a clean company itself (Hangeng and DBSK come into mind and I still hold suspicious eyebrows over them) but to say the nation’s most popular girl group had been forced to sell their bodies even though their company alone is the most financially well-off in the Hallyu wave is hardly different to saying Hitler lost WW2 simply because the Allies outnumbered the Wehrmact.

      I’ve no doubt it occurs within smaller agencies (or shittier ones such as CCM) however since they’re not as financially well-off to begin with, have smaller publicity and lack the sufficient resources and staff to promote as much.

      • Roan De Guzman

         @Black Plague,

        I am also aware about the China and their shadiness towards women, because Chinese bosses in the Philippine Business sectors have the same tendencies as men in mainland China. Besides, who influenced Korea to begin with? China. It’s just that Korean wave is growing as compared to Chinese entertainment (excluding Hongkong and Taiwan) in terms of popularity, and entertainment companies are keep on shoving the shit down to international market’s throats.

        There are bigger factors in declining population of Korea like low birth rate (due to abortion—forced or not, eh?) and aging, but should Korea wish NOT to be on the same title as Japan, there should be done something to stop it, like providing welfare for those psychologically troubled. Culture thingamajig bullshit is not an excuse, like telling me it’s in Korean culture not to have your personal problems addressed.

        Well, just because your company is moneyed, doesn’t mean you are less likely to pimp your female talents like whores to executives and businessmen. Casting couch is alive and well in America, and believe it or not, while it is not disclosed, female actresses and singers have to do the dirty deed for the sake of popularity and richness. Even bigger companies in America exploits it. No need to mention that pedophilia has been a problem in Hollywood.

        I agree to the fact that Koren journalism is a fucking joke. Even joke-ier than Philippine journalism (though we have problems in ABS-CBN’s occassional unreliability in reporting more sordid stuff which, for example, Aquino clan is involved).

  • FranetteRoschuni

    I was very glad to read this article which is addressing a serious humanitarian problem. Koreans may not suffer for food, but when the employers think they own the employees and the relationship goes over the line and smells oddly like slavery, then there is a real problem. People need time to think, to live, to be with families as well as time to sleep and to eat. Korea can not be considered a modern country when such relationships lacking in human compassion exist.
    Using the US as a standard, SAG (Screen Actors Guild) has a standard 40 hour week with 12 hours between shifts. There is allowance for some over time, but there are also fines for failure to comply with the limits that are set. The song which says “8 hours for work, 8 hours for sleep and 8 hours for what you will” was written in 1865 and the first federal laws requiring an 8-hour day were passed in 1868. However, it was not until the 1930s that most Americans really had a 40-hour workweek. Tradition has passed down the idea of having at least one day off a week since Moses presented the 10 commandments; so the idea of working 7 days a week seems Barbaric.
    If you care about your employees, you cannot suck the life out of them by not allowing even proper sleep or family time. An 18-hour day still seems abusive. How long does it take to change cultural attitudes?
    Anyway, I am grateful that you wrote on this topic and you did a great job. Thank you.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=729154428 Chastina Li

    Glad there is still the Minor Protection Act in Korea that protects young idols from getting overworked, that is effectively all I am concerned about. As to the working conditions, I gotta say it is pretty normal to work long hours without sleep in East Asian countries as far as I know. Why did the actress came out asking for justice but others didn’t, this does reflects a difficult problem with the Korean entertainment industry but it does not speak for all of the artists and actors.