일베·표절 논란 등에 휩싸였던 크레용팝이 공식 해명을 내놓자 일간베스트(이하 ‘일베’) 사이트가 들끓고 있다.
21일 크레용팝 소속사 크롬엔터테인먼트 측은 장문의 공식 입장을 내고, 일베 활동 의혹에 대해 사실과 다르다고 주장했다. 이 과정에서 소속사 측은 “크레용팝 멤버의 일베 활동은 결코 없었다. 일베가 반사회적, 반인륜적 글과 댓글이 올라오는 사이트임을 인지하지 못했을 당시 이뤄진 일들이었다”고 일베 용어를 쓴 데 대해서도 적극 해명했다.
|크레용팝 (사진: 크롬 엔터테인먼트)|
이에 일베 사이트에서 ‘여신’ 대접을 받던 크레용팝은 순식간에 ‘배신자’로 전락한 분위기다. 일베 회원들은 “크레용팝 해명? 니들 보려고 유튜브 다운받는 내가 XX다”, “지금 크레용팝 까는 게 왜 이중성인지 모르겠다. 아니 우리 싫다는데 왜 우리가 좋아해야함?”, “크레용팝 해명 어처구니 없다. 앞으로 용팝으로 드립 몇번 쳐주면 사장도 정신차릴 듯”이라는 등 격앙된 반응을 보였다.
한 회원은 ‘크레용팝 CD를 꾸며보았다’는 제목으로 크레용팝 CD를 4등분 하고, 앨범 재킷을 ‘ㅇㅂ(일베)’ 모양으로 오려낸 사진을 올리며 분노를 드러내기도 했다.
일부 회원들은 “애초에 크레용팝은 일베를 응원한다던지 일베를 한다던지 언급조차안했는데 다들 왜 이러는 건지”, “크레용팝 해명 봤는데 걔들은 잘못 없다. 그냥 이념논쟁의 희생양일 뿐”, “크레용팝이 무슨 죄냐. 소속사 사장의 선택이지”라는 등의 반응을 보이기도 했다.
한편 크레용팝 측은 21일 일베와의 관련성 외에도 일본 걸그룹 모모이로 클로버Z의 콘셉트를 표절했다는 의혹에 대해서도 해명했다. 크레용팝 측은 “크레용팝의 트레이닝복 콘셉트는 ‘댄싱퀸’ 활동 당시에 했던 것으로 롤모델인 DJ DOC의 영향을 받은 것”이라며 “가슴의 이름표는 신인가수 식별을 위한 것이며 헬멧은 ‘빠빠빠’의 만화주제곡 같은 느낌에 맞춘 것”이라고 모모이로 클로버Z 표절 논란을 일축했다. (이혜미 기자)
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Crayon Pop’s alleged connection to far-right website touches nerve
K-pop girl group Crayon Pop on Wednesday denied rumors that its members were involved with “Ilbe (Daily Best),” in an apparent attempt to avoid backlash that is rooted in the public’s widespread discontent toward the controversial website.
Chrome Entertainment, Crayon Pop’s agency, said via press release that the group’s members did not participate in any activities concerning Ilbe, a humor-centered community website well known for its members’ far-right political viewpoints.
In June, members of Crayon Pop were accused of using “nomunomu” (mispronunciation of a Korean word meaning “very, very”) and “jjeolttugi (crippled),” two slang words used by Ilbe members to denigrate former liberal presidents Roh Moo-hyun and Kim Dae-jung, respectively.
“There is no reason for them (Crayon Pop) to use the word ‘nomunomu’ for political reasons. They did not even know the word was used to disparage Roh, because they do not access the Ilbe website at all,” the agency said.
Chrome Entertainment said it was “taken aback” by people accusing Crayon Pop members of using the word “jjeolttugi” to speak ill of Kim. It apologized, however, for using the word that can be offensive to those who are physically challenged.
The agency also said it apologizes for a Twitter comment that was seen as a jab to its critics. The comment was a Chinese proverb that can be translated as “Buddha only sees Buddha. A pig only sees a pig.”
The incident is expected to hinder the recent success of Crayon Pop, boosted by the girls’ comic concept and catchy tunes.
While the incident appeared to be a simple gaffe by young singers, its repercussions were enormous.
Online shopping mall Auction temporarily withdrew its advertisement that featured Crayon Pop, after many of its members left the website en masse. Shoppers who left Auction reportedly expressed complaints to the website for signing Crayon Pop to promote it.
Crayon Pop was also to participate in the opening ceremony of FC Seoul soccer team’s home game next Wednesday, but the club cancelled the group’s appearance after a firestorm of criticism from the public.
The series of severe reactions is presumed to be attributed to many South Korean’s less-than-friendly sentiment toward Ilbe. While first launched as a user-edited humor website, Ilbe has been dominated by users with extreme right-wing viewpoints.
Many of its popular posts are ones that belittle political or opinion leaders from the liberal bloc.
It also uses its own vocabulary that is insulting to key progressive figures and people from the Jeolla provinces, a traditionally left-wing stronghold.
Among the best-known “Ilbe vocabulary” is the word “hong-eo (skate ray),” used to describe people from Jeolla. The exact origin of this usage is unclear but according to the Maeil Business newspaper, it was to refer to the smell of the rotting corpses of those killed during the 1980 democratization movement in Gwangju.
Earlier in the year, Ilbe caught the public eye after some of its members claimed that the democratization movement was an anti-South Korean riot incited by the North Korean military.
Besides posts that fuel ideological and regional division, its members are notorious for blurting out racist jokes and comments.
Child singer Hwang Min-woo, better known as “Little Psy” from Psy’s “Gangnam Style” music” video, recently fell prey to vicious verbal attacks by Ilbe members. In May, Hwang’s representatives filed a formal complaint to the police against eight users of Ilbe who insulted the 7-year-old singer for having a Vietnamese mother.
Because of widespread unease toward Ilbe, celebrities suspected of regularly visiting the website also became subject to criticism.
In May, K-pop group Secret’s member Jeon Hyosung was bashed by many fans after she said on a radio show, “Our group respects individuality. We do not democratize.” Contrary to its original meaning, the word “democratization” is used by Ilbe users to mean oppression of one’s opinion.
Jeon later apologized for the inappropriate remarks and said her comments were not derived from Ilbe. Several universities, however, cancelled Secret’s appearance at their festivals, citing “complaints from students.”
By Yoon Min-sik