Recently, Korean reporters attending music shows have come under fire from netizens. Fans were rightfully enraged after some reporters demanded the members of the girl group fromis_9 remove their masks.
Although restrictions for COVID-19 in Korea have relaxed slightly, many citizens and idols still wear masks for various reasons. It was no different for the members of fromis_9 who wore masks on their way to promote their newest track on music shows
During their first week of promotions, the members all arrived at one of their first music show appearances. As the members walked out, only Jiheon wasn’t wearing her mask. The reporters asked the other members to remove their masks. However, the members kept apologizing, explaining that they couldn’t.
Yet, despite the members’ politeness, many reporters complained that they kept their masks on, and others said that the members seemed indifferent and might as well have left if they weren’t doing anything. Netizens were rightfully angered after hearing these comments and more.
In particular, a few reporters compared the group to VIVIZ, adding, “Should’ve done something entertaining just like VIVIZ did,” and “VIVIZ was entertaining, they even did aegyo.”
In the second video of the members, the reporters once again made comments about the group wearing masks, with one even describing the members as “indifferent.”
When they asked the group to take off their masks again, the members kept their masks on and continued with their polite greetings. As a response, the reporters could be heard sighing. The members did not clarify why they kept their masks on but there is a multitude of valid reasons why. Most importantly, they had zero obligations to explain themselves to anyone.
In the final video shared online, reporters continued their remarks, which can be heard over the dubbed music. The reporters continued to share their annoyance with the group. In particular, some of the comments got more personal and even referenced fellow HYBE group, BTS.
Netizens took up arms online as they criticized the reporters for disrespecting fromis_9.
- They know it and still act like that all the time sigh
- Do they think they’re BTS?
- That’s why they should just XXX
- They’re a girl group at the level of BTS (sarcasm)
- XXX Mood killers XXX
When the girls made their way in front of the reporters and media, one of the reporters said, “Okay, please remove your mask and just give us a simple team greeting.”
Being true professionals, member Saerom explained that they would remove their masks the next week. After hearing the reply, another reporter sarcastically remarked, “Yeah right, yeah right,” before sighing.
The final video was edited as the audio was replaced with music, yet, it had already gone viral. As expected, Korean netizens were extremely angry after seeing how poorly the members of fromis_9 were treated. They also criticized the creator of the video for trying to cover up the nasty remarks.
- “Wow. For a group of people who hate getting called names like sh*t-porters, you sure do say a lot of hateful things in this video… Reporters are supposed to be neutral, so it’s surprising to see how two-faced you all are, haha. Thank you for this amazing video which proves to me once again that you are nothing but low-life sh*t-porters!”
- “Why would you upload this video as is? What, you’re confident that you were in the right? Reporters don’t own these idols, man.”
- “WOW. Did they put music over the video because the video went viral and online communities started talking about it? LMAO. How lovely, really. HAHA.”
- “LOL. I see what kind of people become reporters. Thanks for making it clear.”
- “How f*cking amazing. It’s so rude that I DOUBTED what I was hearing at first.”
- “Holy moly. Reporters really do think they’re the sh*t to be power tripping like this, don’t they?”
Yet, it isn’t the first time Korean journalists have come under fire for their treatment of female idols who wouldn’t remove their masks. Back in January, reporters and photographers who were taking photos of K-Pop idols at the 11th Gaon Chart Music Awards red carpet came under fire for demanding that the Red Velvet members take off their masks.
The media kept asking the members to remove their masks despite the members not wanting to, especially due to the rising COVID-10 infections.
they really kept pushing for the girls to take their masks off for pics when they were literally going ❌ cmon now… 👎 pic.twitter.com/AhgZlpJepj
— 👻🎼 (@ultseul) January 27, 2022
For many netizens, the attitude of the reporters was truly uncalled for and they praised the group for remaining calm in the stressful situation.
You can read more about reporters asking idols to remove their masks below.