[Column] Will Diversity ever Shine for Bullied JYJ?
July 01, 2014
“Tanked again?” If you are a fan of the group JYJ (Jaejoong, Yuchun, Junsu), it is quite reasonable anger.
2014 Incheon Asian Games has caused a big issue after appointed JYJ as its ambassador. The game’s official song’s singer as well as the ambassador who participated for related events, JYJ now may not be able to be on opening/closing ceremony which are the main events of Asian Games.
JYJ was appointed as promotion ambassador for Asian Games in Feb 2013. The group sang the official song ‘Only One’, attended the showcases in Vietnam, China, and filmed official CF without paid.
But what they got in return was bullying. On July 01, press conference for opening/closing ceremony was held at Millenium Hilton Hotel Seoul. The group EXO and other performers attended, but JYJ was not informed anything about this. The organising committee of Asian Game commented that “JYJ’s appearance hasn’t been decided and under discussion”.
It is difficult to understand : several artists have already been confirmed and came to the press conference, however, the singer of the event’s official song is still not decided.
JYJ appealed saying “It will be nothing more than covering up the heaven with your palm. It is not acceptable to anyone if the singer who sang the event’s official song and worked for more than 1 year to promote Asian Games would only be before ceremony. We wish it is not caused by unfair external pressure”.
Also the management amphasised that the agreement with the committee includes the conditions that 1) organising committee agrees with JYJ in advance for any events related to Asian games and 2) JYJ will be the top priority when cast any Korean singers for opening/closing ceremony and other conferences for international press.
With this controversy, it is very natural to pay attention to the relationship between JYJ and SM Entertainment, which had a long-term legal dispute. For general K-POP fans, it was attractive as JYJ and SM’s new star could be on the same stage – Just like ‘Diversity Shines Here’, which is Asian Games’ slogan.
JYJ side took the situation as “What we were dread just came true”. JYJ had cancellation notice without any proper explanation when they worked for Jeju Ireland’s ambassador – it was just one day before their stage, after all flight tickets had been booked and stage cue-sheet had been delivered.
As this history of incidents remains, JYJ was concerned about such thing would happen again, and even the organising committee deplore the situation together at the first meeting with the company.
Actually it is still hard for JYJ to get a chance to be on TV (entertainment/music programme) even though the group finished (practically won) the lawsuit with SM in 2012. There is still no movement to cast JYJ as a singer, not as an actor. It has been years since the court ordered not to interfere JYJ’s activities, but JYJ has not been able to be on any stage, even at end-of-year awards which everyone comes.
The industry doubts whether JYJ could continue activities while SM is practically dominating broadcasting area.
“For example, can you imagine JYJ on a show hosted by SM artists with Super Junior members? I don’t think so”, a staff expressed his/her doubts when JYJ was freed for activities.
An anonymous staff at entertainment department commented that “Once someone[at broadcasting company] breaks the ice, I guess JYJ will be free to appear. But whoever breaks it first, I hope I wouldn’t be the one”. Other source at drama department raised the question that “JYJ is having achievement in acting and musical but those are the fields that a big entertainment company cannot have such influence. So I don’t think JYJ is really free”.
Most experts say it is caused by the industry’s dynamics – means there is no ‘public’ pressure, but broadcasting staff and companies just do not even think about (casting JYJ) in order to keep their relationship with big management companies who has a lot of other celebrities.
When JYJ was appointed as the ambassador, EXO was a newcomer. An anonymous source commented that “Whoever expected EXO would grow this big so fast? If Asian Games fails to keep its promise with JYJ, it would have to be seen as the committee gives more weight on EXO than JYJ. ‘Diversity Shines’ shouldn’t only be for Sports”.
Translated by: https://dedicatee.wordpress.com
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