The Korean FTC has issued a sanction against JYJ’s former management agency for purposely disobeying a court order and blocking the group’s ability to promote their projects on tv and radio.
Fans around the world were suspicious about continued external interference from SM after JYJ won lawsuits against both SM and avex (Japan). Now there is confirmation their suspicious were correct.
CJeS, the agency working with JYJ now, released a statement in response to this news. CEO Baek Chang Joo called the investigation “transparent” and thanked the KFTC for trying to “eradicate unlawful actions in the industry”.
From CJeS Statement:
“The investigation gave irrefutable evidence that SM Entertainment had violated the Monopoly Regulation and Fair Trade Act by abusing their monopolistic and superior leverage in the entertainment industry to disadvantage those who have different opinions…
We believe that the FTC’s recent order to rectify such actions will shed light on the tyranny of super powers in the industry who go against the innovative economy policies of the current government.”
JYJ themselves spoke very eloquently about these findings as well:
“We would like to thank the FTC for their decision. Though it feels as though we have been locked in a hard battle since 2009 and are walking in an endless desert, today’s verdict gave us strength to keep going as it showed that the situation is slowly changing for the better. We hope that the FTC’s verdict will allow us to freely pursue activities in the entertainment industry and stand on a fair stage in front of the public. We also hope that such roads are also opened for our juniors as well.
Although a long and dark tunnel still lies ahead of us, we saw a strand of light in the far distance flash by our eyes. We will continue to walk towards that light, and we will always do our best to repay everyone with great performances and activities.”
JYJ got blocked by two companies: SM (Korea) and avex (Japan). Both companies tried to keep total and complete control over the group’s every movement and business decision even during the duration of the lawsuits.
avex (Japan) even tried to prevent JYJ from performing a charity concert to benefit victims of the massive earthquake and tsunami disaster a few years ago!
They both failed and the companies were ordered by the Courts not to hinder JYJ’s ability to promote their projects while the lawsuit was ongoing.
But apparently SM’s disrespect for the Courts and vindictive nature knows no bounds. They were wrong and apparently only Jaejoong, Yoochun and Junsu actually had the courage to call them out.
But rather than laying low and protecting their own reputations, SM pursued JYJ like vicious bitches wanting to make an example out of them to continue to scare their remaining slaves artists.
If this mess were a teen movie, SM would be the hateful, stalker ex-boyfriend who can’t accept reality and move the f_ck on with his life. But I digress.
Finally after the KFTC’s 3 year investigation, fans have actual confirmation that SM played a sustained role in keeping JYJ off the air since the lawsuit.
According to the KFTC findings, SM and some group calling itself the KFPCAI (Korean Federation of Pop Culture and Arts Industries) sent out a threatening notice to those in the entertainment industry asking them to “refrain from inviting or allowing JYJ to appear on televised programs.”
They accused JYJ of only suing for money and called them a threat to the Hallyu Wave.
These two conspirators (SM and the KPFCAIPSDLMNOP-who-gives-a-$hit) made sure this notice got sent to 26 licensees “including broadcasting companies, and album and online music file distribution companies”. (Download KFTC Rpt translation)
The 26 licensees included Warner Music Korea and 3 major broadcasting companies (probably KBS, SBS and MBC), along with 6 KPOP entertainment related companies, 11 album distribution and sales companies and 5 online music distribution companies.
SM and the KFPCAI threatened legal action against anyone or entity that would allow JYJ on the air in Korea and falsely accused the trio of being involved in a “dual contract with another agency”. This of course isn’t true. Near as we can tell, CJeS works for JYJ, not the other way around.
In addition, fans were also suspicious that SM would routinely threaten to yank all of their artists from working with a specific broadcaster if they were to allow JYJ on their shows.
The broadcast station KBS was particularly vicious in their JYJ blockage. They released a statement during the lawsuit dispute that they would bar JYJ from appearing on any of their shows while the lawsuit was ongoing. But even after the lawsuit was concluded with a JYJ victory, they — like everybody else — still refused to allow them on air.
KBS is also the one who pulled JYJ from performing at a special ‘New 7 Wonders of the World’ event which would have sought to highlight the Korean island of Jeju for inclusion on the list. JYJ were replaced by SM artists. Coincidence? Hell no. (See KBS Bull$hit)
As for their part, the KFPCAI was ordered to take “corrective measures” by notifying all 26 licensee again and pulling back their allegations against JYJ.
Despite JYJ’s massive, damn-near underground success and their ever-growing appeal internationally, they were still effectively banned from appearing on Korean entertainment shows.
CJeS had very strong words to describe the situation JYJ were forced to go through because of SM, likening their experience in dealing with the totalitarian Korean entertainment industry to “despotism”.
And honestly, to many international fans, the Korean entertainment industry looks terrible. Its full of conflicts of interest and things which international stars would never put up with today. (See SM Troubles)
“The development of our nation’s entertainment industry, signified by the Hallyu Wave, will only take place if the creativity and diversity of every participant is respected and guaranteed.” CJeS’s statement read.
Despite JYJ winning the lawsuit against SM back in April 2013, they were still blocked from appearing on Korean television shows to promote their music.
And remember how we were all suspicious at how LOEN suddenly declared they wouldn’t promote Junsu’s newest solo project and showcase?
Somebody at LOEN may have gotten word about this upcoming KFTC decision and decided not to throw LOEN’s reputation to the dogs or make an enemy out of JYJ’s ever-growing fanbase.
I wonder what JYJ’s “hyungs” and “noonas” have to say about this latest decision?
All the hyungs and noonas who are currently working under a slightly fairer atmosphere because of JYJ, why are their mouths so closed today?
All the hyungs and noonas who never had the courage to put their careers on the line to wage a fight for fair treatment, will they still defend SM to the death (like good little soldiers)?
As they sat back and watched JYJ get unjustly burned by this entertainment industry, why are they now so quiet after this SM sanction?
Tell me again — you a$$hole who shall remain nameless — who should be “grateful”? JYJ hasn’t at any time asked any other star to be “grateful” to them for taking on this fight, even though they were accused of being “ungrateful”.
Will KEPA issue an apology for acting a damn fool by jumping into the middle of this dispute and trying to soil JYJ’s reputation? Will they admit their lame psychic prediction of massive legal “abuse” by other kpop stars didn’t come true?
Will KBS, SBS and MBC finally pick their faces up from off the floor and see JYJ as the ratings bonanza and advertiser-magnets they truly are?
And what will avex do now that they’ve lost their lawsuit against JYJ and their co-conspirator (SM) has been sanctioned by the KFTC? Will they issue a round of apologies to JYJ? With they withdraw the accusatory statements and disassociate themselves with SM now? Don’t hold your breath.
For their part, SM is totally denying they did ANYTHING. Shock (not)! They claim they “never interfered” with JYJ’s activities despite the evidence gathered by the KFTC, and are “disappointed” that they were sanctioned.
Of course, the kid with the chocolate and cookie crumbs around his mouth never wants to admit he ate all the cookies. But SM executives are grown-ass men… gray-grown-ass men who sought (and may be still seeking) to vindictively go after JYJ because JYJ refused to keep their heads down.
Yeah, I said it.
Let’s hope other companies will choose to allow JYJ on the air and not succumb to the foolishness and the old-world-style manipulations of a past era.
If the Korean entertainment industry wants to be taken seriously by the world (and JYJ’s international fans), it will have to evolve. And JYJ’s fight for fair treatment may be a helpful catalyst in its evolution.