Ok, first of all, this is an opinion post from one person only (me). I will talk about the Tzuyu scandal and what I think this will imply to the entertainment world and even to some extent, what this means to diplomatic relations. I talked about it a bit before in an entertainment update’s gossip corner. But it is a huge deal now and hence “earned” its solo post. This is not a classic cdramadevotee post so read at your own discretion ^^ For people who had been following the blog for a while, you know I like to share my thoughts. Hope this time, I won’t hurt anyone’s feelings. And of course, feel free to add your thoughts. Oh and this has some interesting discussion on netizenbuzz so people can check that out too.
Why a solo article now?
I didn’t think it was such a bid deal on weibo, but turns out I was wrong. I was talking with my parents about the Taiwan election and both had heard about this scandal. My mother is mostly interested in polical and economical news so the fact that even her heard about this means it is a huge deal. But what makes it officially super important is the role this scandal had during the Taiwan election! Yes, the election happened on January 16th 2016. And pretty much everyone agrees that this scandal had a heavy impact on this year’s results, getting it some international attention and earning the winner extra votes.
This corner will have a bit more political content. I don’t have a heavy historical backgroung on Taiwan’s independence movement so I will stay as neutral as I can. In 2016, Taiwan has its very first female president, Ms. Tsai Ing-wen. She is the leader of the more radical party that wants independence from China. Her opponent for this election was led by Eric Chu, a more Nationalist Party.
I don’t think it is a bad thing if Taiwan decides to be independent and to fight for it. During the past years, Taiwan became more and more dependent on China economically, but in general, there is still a strong bad opinion there over China. This election can be a wake up call for both of them and I believe things will start moving very fast. At this point, nobody has the monopoly of power and anything can happen.
The role of social media and entertainment:
This year’s election had an increase turn out from younger votes who voted in majority for Ms.Tsai. There is a high chance this increase in number is due to the whole Tzuyu scandal which had shaken heavily the independentists in Taiwan. Esteemation says that this scandal earned her about 1,000,000 votes, a very significant amount. Even Ms. Tsai mentionned the scandal on the day she was elected as she says: “This particular incident will serve as a constant reminder to me about the importance of our country’s strength and unity to those outside our borders.” source
The hashtag “周子瑜” has 140M tagged posts on weibo (as a reference Run Brother is the most popular variety show in China and is x261 the number of tagged posts compare to this tag whereas Legend of Zu is x8. This scandal is trending, but it did not explode the social media on weibo just yet). Cfensi released an opinion article about how Weibo/Sina works and which may throw some light on this issue aka why it is not more trending. It is hard to understand what is China’s next move.
JYP and Tzuyu’s darker future as victims of the political scene:
I would say that JYP and Tzuyu are the victims of social media and after bad move and bad move, they were sacrificed for this political turnout. Let’s start with JYP’s case. It is very obvious to everyone that he is aiming at the Chinese market. With his recent producer award at the weibo festival, Jackson Wang from GOT7 on Go Fridge! and 2PM at different other variety shows, their goal can’t be more clear. And it is understandable since China is getting bigger and bigger entertainment wise (articles this week revealed its film market importance will even overtake US’s) source
Forced by the international, Korean and Chinese netizen community, they did a few bad moves (at least for their own interest). By releasing the apology video on the day of the election, they angered the Chinese more and created more patriotism among the Taiwanese, to the point of no return. Now, it is impossible to limit the consequences. JYP’s stocks had being decreasing by more than 5% I believe and it will only go down for the next few days. 2PM’s schedule are cancelled for Shanghai Dongfang and Anhui channels’ Chinese New Year festival. China is known as a big country that has a big ego. It probably won’t let this calm down easily… Although a visionofjm had pointed out in the comment section of another article that seems had calmed down a bit (with hate coments being deleted and CCTV starting to show Twice on tv again).
As Tzuyu, I sincerely hope she can stay strong. As she is only sixteen years old, she will need the support of her bandmates to go through all this. She didn’t do anything wrong, but became the center of all this attention. We can blame the guy who called her out at first, but I am sure even him didn’t expect such a huge scandal would come out. Hope this can be a lesson to the producers to stop debuting minor kids who are probably emotionally not prepare for all this. Her entertainer path is pretty much closed in China, but I am sure she can be welcomed back to Taiwan if needed.
I am reading on weibo a lot of support for Tzuyu and a lot of negative comments. Some people declares she is only a sixteen year old girl and hopes the public will stop putting her in such an awkward position politically. They think it is unfair to prevent 2PM and Twice from performing in China because they are not related to this scandal at all. Other people are mad at her and are even criticizing Jackson, another member of JYP family with a strong patriotic feeling towards Taiwan. Here is some opinions I found online:
- JYP did not handle this problem properly and actually added oil on fire by their poor use of words.
- Tzuyu didn’t do anything wrong but the over exposure by the Taiwan media just before the elections is what ruined her image.
Korea vs China Entertainments:
A last word. Korean and Chinese entertainments are very different. I often see kpop fans thinking they know better than everyone. To be frank, I feel like kpop is becoming a big bubble and the fans shouldn’t be allowed to impose their thoughts on everyone. On this blog, we rarely do comment translation. This is bringing just too much negative energy to the international follower community. It is appreciated to read thoughts on your favorite idols, but always bringing negative point of views to the light is just unnecessary.
China is not Korea. There are so many difference between the two. Korean entertainment is very colorful, based on popular music, oversaturated with idols, is controled by big agencies who “produce” groups by the dozen, has a lot of body gag and aegyo. Chinese entertainment is focused on ballad musics, talk shows, has a lot of realistic problems such as money, etc. They are different, they use different social media. Please consider those factors when comparing those two entertainment circles. Both has qualities and flaws so please stop bringing one or the other down.
Intellectualkitten’s quick add: Archidisign talked about how China is not Korea and I totally agree with her. But there are also some important similarities that I would like to point out. In the last two years, C-Ent has a lot more young and idol actors. Among them, a lot are singing OST for their own projects, a new phenomena. In the movie and drama world, China is very different from Korea. But if you look at the variety shows, a lot of Korean shows are adopted to Mainland China. Also, variety shows are gaining in popularity. A lot of veteran actors are going on these shows; whereas before, they had more mysterious image. On the other hand, negative comments on social media does not affect a celebrity as much as in Korea. For example, T-ara’s career died after their scandal with Hwayoung. In China, a star will raise no matter if it is harsh or positive feedback by the public. If they are trending, they are popular. As for the whole Tzuyu scandal, I did not read much about it :”D… It will probably affect JYP’s prospects in the Chinese market, but as time pass by, things may turn around for them.