“I don’t know why people are still shocked by this…”
SM Entertainment, the giant South Korean music label, has recently found itself embroiled in a controversy over a social media post involving their iconic K-Pop girl group Girls’ Generation. The post, which was intended to celebrate the music video for “Mr. Mr.” reaching 100 million views on YouTube, inadvertently sparked a dispute by excluding former member Jessica Jung from the celebratory collage.
The tweet in question featured a collage of the eight current members of Girls’ Generation, along with a message of gratitude to the fans, known as SONEs, for their unwavering love and support. While the intent was to commemorate a significant milestone, the omission of Jessica, who was a part of the group during the “Mr.Mr.” era, did not sit well with a faction of the fanbase.
— Girls’ Generation (@GirlsGeneration) November 12, 2023
Fans quickly took to social media to voice their opinions, with the conversation polarizing the SONE community. On one side, there are fans who argue that Jessica’s contribution to the group during her tenure should be recognized and respected.
They point out that her presence in the era the tweet was celebrating is indisputable and that her exclusion is a slight to her legacy within the group.
— SICA J 소녀시🍃To.Beep Beep💫 (@sssicasyjfly_) November 12, 2023
— ÷ Jessica J (@xolovejsyosh) November 12, 2023
— 【 𝐓𝐚𝐞𝐧𝐠𝐬𝐢𝐜𝐓𝐇 】 (@taengsicth_) November 12, 2023
On the other hand, some supporters maintain that SM Entertainment’s decision to omit Jessica is justified, given that she is no longer a member of Girls’ Generation following her departure in 2014. They argue that the company is focusing on the group’s current lineup and future rather than its past. Image rights are also mentioned as a possible reason behind Jessica’s omission.
I dont know why people are still shocked by this, sm cant use her image anymore probably part of the agreement they did. Showing her here would result to a lawsuit because it violates an artist’s image rights as she is not affiliated/involved with the group in any way post-2014. https://t.co/maHPozakTm
— zz (@urijaehyun97) November 12, 2023
as SONE, I think SM got it right. Jessica isn’t a member of SNSD anymore. https://t.co/6L4GA915U4
— Akabane Karma (@Zea_NorallIvory) November 12, 2023
Jessica’s departure from Girls’ Generation was a highly publicized event that left many fans feeling upset and betrayed. For some, the exclusion of Jessica from the collage is a painful reminder of the rift that her departure caused, not just within the group but also among the fans.
Keep ot9 content ot9,if you can’t do it, let your girls reshoot an ot8 version then plus you have a choice to use the mv cover too but of course you wouldn’t do that bcos you’re petty af. Who are you fooling by lying about your own history? https://t.co/WMFcRjvGip pic.twitter.com/pR19Z8FV0J
— blue in Jessica’s #BeepBeep era (@embarras_sment) November 12, 2023
SM Entertainment’s handling of the situation also raises questions about the way companies manage the legacies of former group members. In an industry that frequently sees lineup changes, the challenge of honoring past members while promoting the current group is a delicate balancing act.
While SM Entertainment’s tweet aimed to celebrate a milestone for Girls’ Generation, it inadvertently sparked a controversy that has reignited discussions about group legacy and member contributions in K-Pop. The situation exemplifies the challenges entertainment companies face in navigating the emotional landscape of fandoms, especially in an era where social media plays a pivotal role in shaping public perception.
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