The Korea Herald


YG sued for nullifying the debut of ‘Mix Nine’ trainee

By Hong Dam-young

Published : June 26, 2018 - 16:48

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YG Entertainment has been sued for cancelling the debut of Woo Jin-young, who was a trainee of audition program “Mix Nine.”

On Tuesday, Woo’s agency Happyface Entertainment stated that it filed a damage suit against YG on June 18 for turning a blind eye over canceling the trainee’s promised debut for months -- Woo was supposed to debut as one of the winners of the show -- and abusing its power against the trainee’s agencies. 

Woo Jin-young (JTBC) Woo Jin-young (JTBC)

The released statement by Happyface reads, “Two months have passed since the end of ‘Mix Nine,’ but YG hasn’t mentioned a word about a plan for the trainee’s debut. It just neglected them.”

“From the early stages of building the program and nullifying the trainee’s debut, YG has been accused of making unilateral decisions that are favorable to itself by using its position in the industry.”

In May, it was reported that YG held meetings with the agencies of ‘Mix Nine’ winners to discuss their debut plans regarding promotions and contracts. But they failed to reach agreements, which resulted in the cancelation of the debut and Woo returning to his agency as a trainee. According to Happyface, YG then used the agencies not agreeing as an excuse to cancel the debut.

Happyface said it has demanded ten million won ($9,000) in compensation, explaining that the cost symbolized the agency’s hope for the K-pop industry to be free from “Gapjil,” a Korean term which refers to the abuse of power by someone against a person in a weaker position.

Responding to Happyface’s lawsuit, YG released a statement, which read, “We thought the situation ended a few months ago when the heads of the six agencies met and came to an amicable agreement. So we were not expecting this kind of situation.”

It added that it will respond by discussing the issue with a legal expert and try to minimize misunderstandings through the final decision of the court.