By: LazerKim About two weeks ago, a news item and video was circulated about Kim Hyun Joong being nice to his sasaeng fans (nuisance fans). I would like to clarify that Hyun Joong doesn’t have any sasaeng fans. Those fans seen in that video were his fans just like you. I posted my article Fans and Idol, that many were curious as to what sasaeng fans are. I mentioned in that article that I wouldn’t pretend to know everything about the news item in fact I don’t. And so I dig deeper about it, and now I think I’m prepared to talk about it. This article had been sitting in my file for weeks, and every time I attempt to post it, there’s always something new that’s been catching my attention.
At this point I’ll probably bend a little bit from the usual topics that we talk about, I will not name drop anybody, and we’ll find out as to why this news item about Hyun Joong was circulated out of the blues. I would just like to emphasize that what I’m about to relate are realities that’s currently happening in S.Korea pertaining to Korean celebrities. I’ll keep this article as gentle as I can, and let’s learn something from it instead, keeping our awareness of what is happening as I set my analysis and my own opinion.
About two weeks ago, there was a malicious video came out from the internet about an idol group that seemed to me a member of that idol group, laid hands to a fan and another audio recorded of the same idol group which sounded allegedly to be furious swearing and threatening to some fans. Then the following day, a video of Hyun Joong showing his smiles to his fans who were waiting for him at his agency together with one of his members in his group, which was gaining attention being a good example on how idols should treat their fans. And again the following day a news item came out, about this idol group having a press conference, submitting a public apology and a confession about their encounter with their sasaeng fans.
Who are these called sasaeng fans? It’s a Korean term for nuisance or stalker fans who are identified to be teenage fans, who followed their idols everywhere they go, invade their idol’s privacy, calling them up by their cellphones to the extend of using their social security number! I could probably identify a die hard fan but I think these stalker fans are extremely different from a fan who’s just being curious about an idol’s personal life. These stalker fans practically hired a taxi cab for a whole day and consistently followed this idol group. As to why these stalker fans doing this to this particular idol group, they said they just want to see their idols up close, which I’m not convince at all.
When the malicious video and audio recorded circulated at the internet like a ball of fire for a day, the idol group came upfront and confessed their experience with this stalker fans to the media. They were abroad when they held this press conference as they perform their world concert. I will not elaborate what they had confessed since it’s extremely unbearable for an idol group to experienced. They are like in jail without bars, having been deprived of their privacy since they’re private life had been invaded by stalker fans.
Having see the video of this idol group, one would think it’s totally a violation to human rights, if you do not know the story behind the incident. As I watched the video it gave me an impression as if one of the member slapped a fan and grab her hair, as to why the member did it, at that certain incident, was not so clear. In the public eye one can say “Being a man, one should not lay hands on a girl”, no matter what happens.
Men are physically stronger than a women, and in any culture, men are taught never to hurt a women physically. The video gave a strong negative impact to the idol group from the public eye and I think seeing from the video can give you an initial negative impression about the idol for doing such thing. And considering the idol is a public figure or a celeb had made the situation even complicated.
I would say, in my own opinion both the idol and the stalker fans were at fault. These stalker fans had been pestering this idol group for six year, and I would understand the endurance the idols had been through, until such time the idols couldn’t take it anymore and so they just exploded which I understand they are just but human being. In so many instances for six year of enduring from their stalker fans, I’m not sure if ever there was any police intervention, so as to stop this wrong doings of staker fans.
It was only after a few days that I found out that the video was taken in 2009. And this really had attracted my attention. That video and audio I think had been in the possession of stalker fans for three year and finally exposed it after three year while the group was abroad doing their concert. Why?? Why does it had to take three years to expose and the timing was quite questionable. And the question as to why are these stalker fans doing this horrible actions to this idol group.
Here are my hanging questions: First, if these stalker fans are teenagers might be students, can they really afford to hire a taxi cab service to tail this idol group for the whole day?? Second, according to the idol group they are sometimes followed 24hours? Don’t you think these stalker fans compensates or earn from what they’re doing? Third, I think these stalker fans are prepared to get hurt, I think they practically provoke the idols to hurt them, so as to take pictures, videos, audios ect. and expose as evidence, to deliberately damage the reputation of this group.
These stalker fans are not lunatics, they are not crazy on the contrary they are smart and they knew everything they’re doing and they have a purpose for doing so. In my opinion, somebody big might be behind this which appears to me like a conspiracy. And this somebody may not be happy about the group’s success.
There are other idol groups who experience the same treatment from their stalker fans group but it was said that this group had the most extreme experience and the longest which had been in the period of six years, since they debuted, until such time they split from their previous group. And then that previous group do experience it too.
As I was trying to analyse a common ground, I think these stalker fans are after popular idols and the ones who are doing concerts abroad. This is just one common ground that I see. It was also said that this stalker fan group are growing in numbers, and that there were at least 10 taxi cab units who render cab service to these stalker fans.
Aside from this videos exposed, there are other videos showing rudeness from this idol group and their managers taken at the airport. But this video was indeed damaging to the idol group in the public eye. I barely know this idol group and so I do not want to pass judgement on them. What I can relate are from what I have seen from videos, and my opinion. About this hassle stalker fans, where are your parents to guide you anyway?? I honestly I do not think they care about this idol group, I still think somebody’s pushing these stalkers to do horrible things to this idols.
As I read comments from articles about this controversy, I sympathize mostly to the fans who are legitimate and who truly loves this idol group. They are young, mostly are teenagers but they defend their idols, and I can see this is rather difficult for them since the videos are so damaging to the idols and hard to contradict public opinion.
Well, we are fans too, and through good times and hard times we do stay with our idol. Fans do stay specially times like this that the group is really in bad shape and it will even be painful for the idols if their fans would jump ship, that I really hope not. As I have said I barely know the group and so regardless of whatever happened I can only advise their fans to stay strong.
There are many lessons learned out of this controversy, first and foremost I think it would be better for the celebs to expose anything similar to this incident from stalker fans. It will be difficult to pinpoint them though, but if you think they’re doing extreme to any normal fans, then I think it is just right to have police intervention, so that you won’t be tempted to or lose temper that might be regretful in the end. And also allow your agents to take care of your security protection.
This idol group had been walking around without bodyguards. The purpose of this licensed bodyguard is to protect you, they will be your hands, they will be the one to make a move for you, so as not to have a dirt in your hands. Not even the celeb’s manager can protect them, they are not trained, while licensed bodyguard are trained, they know and can identify a clear present danger, and they know what to do without putting the celebs in an embarrassing situation.
And talking about bodyguard, that reminds me, may I just say, Mr. Jeong I hope you’re reading this……you have nice hair style!!! See, even Hyun Joong’s fans are very kind to Mr. Jeong (HJ’s personal body guard)!!! And yes, Mr. Jeong is very accommodating to Hyun Joong’s fans and very polite.
I’m writing this article to keep our awareness open about what is currently happening. This stalkers can just strike any time any where. There are people who may be jealous or envy over the success of others. Let’s be vigilant within the community of fans from being infiltrated by stalkers. There are stalkers whose intention is just to be curious about their idols but this is still wrong. Idols are human being too just like us who has the same right to privacy. And if ever there may be fan stalkers who have other purpose, I think it would be best to expose them right away, before it gets worst.
I remember, although this may be a different situation. Hyun Joong was relating that once he had experienced having some of his fans came to his place, somewhat waiting outside his house. What did he do? Hyun Joong went out of his house, face these fans bought them soya drink or something. And talk to them straight forwarded keeping himself calm and cool, as he told them that he doesn’t want them to be in his house, and that he doesn’t like what they’re doing. But deep inside he was furious, he reversed the situation and talk to the fans in a diplomatic way, and so the fans went home and never bug him again. That same night, KeyEast doubled Hyun Joong’s security.
What happened back there? Hyun Joong merely faced the problem before it gets to its worst. Instead of being furious to his fans he reversed everything, did he lose anything? No on the contrary he gained respect from those fans. Hyun Joong set his boundary between his fans and his privacy. He shared with us a part of his life which he thinks his fans ought to know, and the rest is being kept to himself by being discreet about his moves. By this way a mutual respect was built to a better idol and fan relationship. Hyun Joong enjoys this respect from his fans, that he can drive his car by himself, he can visit his mom at jaksal without being worried even his restaurant is full of costumers and knowing those costumers are also his fans.
Did the fans took any advantage of the chance to be up close to Hyun Joong?? No. If you remember a video having Hyun Joong and his friends were at one Jaksal outlet and the restaurant was full house that time, and so what happened?? Hyun Joong’s fans called his attention, Hyun Joong acknowledged their presence,raise his soju glass to the fan costumers and let’s drink to that!!! Kampai!! Did the fans ever bothered him while he was there? Of course not, Hyun Joong merely sat there enjoyed his drinking with his friends, and after that, he went out wave to his fans and drive. Isn’t this a nice picture to look at between Hyun Joong and his fans? This is because Hyun Joong had set his boundaries that was clear to his fans.
I posted my article Role Model yesterday, for this purpose being Hyun Joong a role model to his co-celeb. And that news article posted two weeks ago citing Hyun Joong as an example on how he handles his fans. For me, respect is one thing that can not be bought Hyun Joong gains respect through his own self respect. I think it is just as simple as that. Love be gets love. Fans do feel the celeb’s sincerity and insincerity. We do feel if they are fake or not.
Hyun Joong is very transparent with what he wants and what he doesn’t. In fact, if you’re sensitive, do not ask him any personal question about yourself, because he’s gonna tell you straight forwarded what he honestly thinks!!! He will not deliberately tell you anything but if you ask, then that’s the time he talks. He displayed this reality about himself in all talk shows that you can watch where he guested. That’s his personality.
It was said that without the fans, there will be no stars. True enough but not fair, without stars there’s not gonna be entertainment, I can’t imagine a world or a life without music. Fans do look up to their idols, and since artists are public figures they are bound to keep a good reputation. Artists should set their boundaries, and fans should respect that boundary, everyone should know where they stand, both the idol and fans.
I would admit I was also curious as to why is this controversy is happening and so I looked up on the incident that the said idol group was entangled in a controversy with the stalkers nuisance fans. And I hope we learned something out of the incident and as to why this update news came out, mentioning Hyun Joong in that news update. I can only think, maybe this could be an eye opener to every celebrity, specially to those who can be so arrogant and snob to their fans.
I’m so lucky that I made the right choice of celebrity to follow. After I have posted the article Fans and Idol, I said to myself I won’t talk about it anymore, but then there are a lot of hanging questions that’s been ringing in my mind seeking for answers, and so I decided to pen down my thoughts about the controversy and learn from it.
Have I drag you this far? It’s tiring to talk about controversy!! Nevertheless, this is good, at least for a change, we bend a little from the usual topic. Well then I guess I have accomplished what I ought to in writing this article.
We can only be proud that we all made the right choice as we followed Kim Hyun Joong and I would say in this issue in handling fans, Hyun Joong was made to be a good example of an ideal celebrity, having his feet firmly on the ground, setting his boundary to his fans leading to a much better fans and idol relationship. And so again, my daily dose is done as I share it with you!!!
All I can say I’m proud to be a fan of Kim Hyun Joong ………..
LazerKim here writing.
Photo credits as tagged, thanks.