[NEWS] JYJ’s Japanese Fans Take Unusual Step of Taking Collective Action for Foreign Artist
Do you remember the reporter who asked Japanese fans to tweet their opinions on the JYJ Charity Concert’s potential cancellation? (See here) He has written the following article:
“Even Charity Concerts…” Japanese Fans Angered at Interference With JYJ Concert
“Avex sold CDs and DVDs without consultation with C-JeS (which is JYJ’s Korean management company) even though it had unilaterally suspended JYJ’s activities. Our fans (Japanese fans) who had been watching silently in the meanwhile reached the limits of our patience when Avex interfered with JYJ’s charity concert in Japan. We are furious at Avex which is interfering with an event for the benefit of Japan’s victims by using the contract as a shield.” (JYJ Japanese fan, Twitter ID @keiko04)
“Although under contract, (Avex is) not letting them be active, and also not terminating the contract. For what reason could this be?” (@byoru1)
The popular 3-person idol group JYJ (Park Yoochun, Kim Junsu, Kim Jaejooong) is facing a difficult time with regards to appearing on domestic broadcasts due to the after-effects of withdrawing from TVXQ. When Avex put the brakes on to make even its Japanese activities become difficult (to materialize), JYJ fans have stood up to action.
The direct impetus is from the time of the relaying of the news that JYJ’s plans for a large-scale charity concert in Japan to help the victims of the March 11 earthquakes (June 7) has been put in danger of foundering due to Avex’s sabotage. It is that the discontent of the Japanese fans which had been seething at the treatment of Avex to announce the suspension of JYJ’s activities suddenly in last October has exploded at the potential of the concert’s foundering.
When a few Japanese fans drafted a “demand letter” to Avex that demanded the resumption of JYJ’s Japanese activitieson the 19th of last month, within less than one month more than 10,000 fans participated in signing.
The result of <Hankyoreh> asking the opinions of Japanese fans on this situation through Twitter is that within a few hours more than 200 writings flooded the newspaper. As the pointing-out of the Japanese fans mentioned earlier, the writings are mostly of the content that one cannot understand the behavior of Avex.
That Japanese fans stand up to take collective action to publicly express an opinion for a Korean Wave star is an extreme anomaly.
In particular, the date of JYJ’s charity concert coincides with the date that TVXQ performs in “Seoul-Osaka Music of Heart 2011, Fighting Japan!” and so suspicions are becoming focused on the circumstances surrounding its cancellation.
According to a recent press release from C-JeS, JYJ had planned to hold a charity concert on the 7th of next month in the Saitama Super Arena which has the seating capacity of approximately 20,000 and had even finished the contract to rent the venue but suddenly was notified of the contract’s cancellation.
JYJ showed themselves to be actively sympathizing with the pains of the disaster, donating 600,000,000 KRW (approximately 600,000 USD) immediately after the earthquakes, saying that they “would like to return the help received from the Japanese fans.”
Perhaps due to this, among some fans there are responses that say: “It is too much to interfere even with a charity concert” and “I am ashamed to be a Japanese.”
The Twitter ID @eyua raised a question: “At this time when due to the nuclear issues many foreigners are returning home (away from Japan), JYJ says that they want to come in order to help in the revival of Japan, out of good will as human beings—why is this not allowed?”
C-JeS pointed to Avex as the forces behind the cancellation of the venue’s rental, saying that “Avex’s sustained and relentless sabotage attempts became the fuse of this incident (of the contract’s cancellation).” At this, C-JeS hurriedly contracted with another venue but it has become known that whether the concert will be held or not is currently unclear.
Paek Changjoo, director of C-JeS, said in a phone call with <Hankyoreh> that “in order to accomplish the concert in any way possible, we are in the middle of persuading the venue affiliates and others.” JYJ’s charity concert began selling tickets on April 5 and is known to be sold out as of now.
Prior to this, director Paek wrote on the home page to the Japanese fans, asking for understanding that: “Because the Japanese fans had been waiting for JYJ’s stage for a long time, we thought of even cancelling the concert because we could not show a properly-equipped concert. But in order to keep the promise with many fans who had waited for JYJ in trust and in patience, we decided to push ahead with the concert.”
Director Paek revealed that even though Avex officially contracted with C-JeS regarding JYJ’s Japanese activities last March which is after the division of TVXQ and so recognized JYJ’s activities within Japan, in October of last year suddenly notified the “suspension of activities” of JYJ within Japan.
Director Paek revealed: “On the surface it is raising as reasons my personal issues and that (JYJ is) in the middle of a conflict with TVXQ. But in truth, it seems that it is attempting to take the rights relating to the management of the international activities of JYJ.”
The Japanese weekly <Shukan Bunshu> recently reported that on this, Avex revealed: “Because the 3 of JYJ are singers attached to Avex, the concert contract is a clear breach of contract. Further, as we see it, (even though this event is a charity concert) this event has a profit-making motive. Currently we are filing for an injunction on the infringement of business rights.”
However, Japanse fans asked back in the demand letter: “If Avex argues that it did not know the past of the director of C-JeS prior to the signing of the contract and claim that this is the cause of the suspension of the contract, then is it not that they were negligent on their obvious (duty to the) task of prior research and examination of a company that is an object of collaboration?” Further, on the reason of being in conflict (with TVXQ) the demand letter also pointed out that: “By the April of last year when JYJ resumed its activities in Japan, the problem of confirming the exclusive contract between the 3 and SM had already been resolved through the (injunction judgment of the) Korean Court of October of year 2009.” It argued that: “Therefore the issue that Avex raises as the reason for the suspension of the activities – that “there is a possibility that the exclusive contract itself may become invalid according to the results of the trial” – is already meaningless.” Because the Japanese market is the biggest market for JYJ, if they find it difficult to be active there it is expected to be a large blow.
JYJ, which his currently in a conflict with the mega-entertainment agency SM Entertainment (hereafter SM) won against the Objection and the Injunction to Suspend the Effects of the Exclusive Contract (contract between JYJ and C-JeS) and was guaranteed independent entertainment activities until the main suit is decided. However, public broadcast stations and cable and satellite broadcasters are being wary of SM and other mega-entertainment activities and are avoiding their appearance on music programs. Director Paek said: “The results of the lawsuit is currently not affecting the appearance on broadcast at all.”
Therefore, JYJ is concentrating on tours outside of Korea, including Japan.
JYJ’s 4-time Asia Tour which kicked off in Thailand on April 2nd through 3rd gathered approximately 43,000 fans.
Translation Credit: JYJ3