The Ningin Round Table is a feature in which we pose an Asian entertainment news-related question to Ningin writers and they give us their colorful opinions and thoughts on the matter. In light of the recent Block B scandal, we asked our writers, “What sort of scandal would it take for you to not be a fan of your favorite KPOP group?” Here’s what some of them had to say:
Anabel Martinez: I think it would be quite tough to change how I would feel about my favorite kpop group (SHINee), so they would have to be involved in something quite drastic for me to lose all respect for them and no longer be a fan of the group. I think if it was found out that my favorite group was involved with or promoting a company that is later found out to have ties to a shady underground organization selling organs on the black market would be the sort of scandal that would break my heart and no longer be a fan and supporter.
Megan Schulz: I am generally fairly forgiving to the bad qualities that human nature is sometimes weak to; however, the drive towards physical and mental violence without remorse is not one of them. As fans, we know that idol groups are put under a lot of stress from their company, the desire to please fans, and from the attention of the fans themselves, which can lead to frustration—it’s natural—but when frustration leads towards the physical or mental harm of others, I lose a lot respect for those idols. There was recently an audio tape of the JYJ members abusing a fan—I didn’t believe it because, let’s face it, those lines sounded too staged—but thinking of the possibility that someone we idolize so much could turn around and slap all that dedication in the face (literally) was stunning to me. I know some of the more hardcore fans are overbearing (and sometimes creepy) in their attempts to show how much they love an idol group, yet I didn’t want to believe something like violence, even towards those fans, could be possible.
Vanda Nur Ilmi: As much as I like my favorite group, I think there should be a limit where I’d have to stop being a fan when a big scandal happened, such as if they were caught swearing with racist comments, moreover if they were being drunk. Kpop stars have fans all over the world who are open to Korean culture, so of course international fans also expect their stars to respect other countries and cultures as well. If Kpop stars were racist, I think they should not deserve the worldwide popularity, even if it was my own favorite group. Unfortunately there have been some cases of racist ‘humor’ in Korean entertainment, so I hope they would stop doing it from now on. If they want to be respected by the world, they should start respecting the world.
Regina Walker: This was a very difficult question for me to answer because I would never want to think of no longer being a fan of my favorite KPOP group which happens to be MBLAQ. I did a lot of thinking for this and came to a conclusion. Though there may be minor things they could do that could possibly upset me a little, it wouldn’t really make me stop being their fan. However, if they were ever involved in a sex tape scandal I think I would lose complete faith in them and wouldn’t be able to look at them in the same way. This isn’t saying they can’t date or anything like that, but when I think of sex tapes, I basically think of porn, so I wouldn’t be able to handle how careless they could be with their personal love life like that. It would probably kill me on the inside since I am such a devout fan of theirs since they are the very first KPOP group I have ever listened to which made me fall in love with it to begin with. I respect MBLAQ so much for all of their hard work and how they have never been involved in any scandals like that. This would really make me lose respect for them.
Tamari Kharebava: The news has to be really shocking for me to abandon fandom of my favorite KPOP groups like SHINee, Beast, Big Bang and etc. It seems almost impossible for me to not like them no matter what happens. I couldn’t care less about the life choices they make; the ’scandal’ could quite possibly be about smoking, doing drugs or having a terrible character for all I care. Hearing any of those of course would be disappointing, but I care more about their music. After all those possible poor lifestyle choices, all it comes down to for me is them creating the music I love. I would stop being a fan of a KPOP group if the scandal reads something along the lines of “G-Dragon can’t actually sing; he has been using auto tune“. Now THAT would destroy my love for the group I cared so much for. Can you imagine finding out that SNSD, possibly your favorite group, has been lip singing during the concerts? I hope I never hear news that mention even a hint of that idea. I don’t really consider personal choices they make any of my business, but when I buy music that is not sung by them, I think I can have a say that it’s wrong. I mean who would want to keep being a fan if what the group offers isn’t real at all.
And now you have the floor: What sort of scandal would it take for you to not be a fan of your favorite KPOP group?
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