K-Pop Fans Call For Fanatics’ Team Employee To Quit After Member Allegedly Slapped On Livestream
The agency for K-pop group Fanatics has issued an apology after one of its male employees was heard on camera allegedly slapping one of the members.
The group had been taking part in one of their V Live broadcasts, with Via, Chaelin, Doi and Rayeon sitting in front of the camera while holding a special lottery draw for their fans.
As the broadcast progressed, the camera notably shifted downwards so all four of the women’s legs could be seen on screen. Moments later, someone who is believed to be another member of the group provided them with a blanket and a jacket to place over their legs, it is believed the male employee reportedly slapped the group member off-camera, for trying to cover up the other’s legs.
You can watch what happened next below:
As soon as each of the women’s legs were covered, a man can be heard addressing the other member and apparently saying: ‘Why are you covering their legs? They’re supposed to be showing them off. Are you stupid?’
Female K-pop idols are generally provided with blankets or something similar to cover their legs while sitting in order to protect their modesty.
As each of the four women on camera looked towards the male voice, pausing their conversation as he could be heard berating their fellow member, the sound believed to be of someone being slapped can be heard.
Immediately, Doi lifted the jacket that was covering her and Rayeon’s legs, handing it to another member of staff off-camera with a concerned expression on her face.
Since the broadcast aired, fans of the group have expressed their fury with Fanatics’ management, with calls for not only the male employee but the group’s whole team to be fired.
Thousands have expressed concerns for the group’s well-being in the wake of the unnamed male employee’s alleged violent behaviour, describing the apparent harassment as ‘alarming’ and ‘terrifying’.
Many pointed to the industry as a whole as being the problem, with one person saying the K-pop industry profits from presenting idols as products and adding: ‘With women it’s even worse and this has to stop.’
Another pointed to the ‘misogyny and sexual exploitation’ in the industry, while one said they were ‘done’, adding: ‘More talks and creations of programs to prevent and stop abuse, bullying, mistreatment and more are needed now in this industry.’
In the wake of these calls to fire Fanatics’ management, the group’s agency, FENT Entertainment, released a statement apologising for its employee’s behaviour, vowing that such an incident wouldn’t happen again.
The statement read, as per KStarLive:
As an agency, we recognise the seriousness of the incident in which a staff member made an inappropriate comment during Fanatic’s V Live broadcast on September 7. First, we would like to apologise to the members and fans who were hurt by this.
The agency acknowledges that the staff member’s inappropriate comment was wrong and without excuse, and the person responsible will take action against them accordingly. FENT will take more care in future so that this incident does not happen again.
Once again, we apologise to the fans who love Fanatics and will do our best to protect the rights of the artists you love. Thank you.
Notably, the agency made no mention of the slapping sound in its statement, while it also failed to confirm whether the man responsible had been fired, other than saying action will be taken.
Subsequently, the apology isn’t good enough for many fans, who are desperate to know if their idols are in a safe environment.
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