TVXQ Dispute 'SM's Dilemma'

Much attention has been put on SM Entertainment and its future actions as the Courts have sided with the three TVXQ members YoungWoong Jaejoong, Micky Yoochun and Xiah Junsu on the legal dispute between the three and their agency regarding their exclusive contract.

On the 27th, the Seoul District Courts partially accepted the exclusive contract suspension request against SM Entertainment submitted by Xiah Junsu, YoungWoong Jaejoong and Micky Yoochun.

To have the Courts partially accept the exclusive contract suspension request is to have the Courts decided that the contract between SM and the members of TVXQ is in fact unlawful. According to the decision of the Courts, SM is not allowed to interfere or question any individual activities of the three members or create contracts regarding group activities without the consent of the three members.

For now, SM has stated that the agency cannot accept the Courts' ruling. SM Entertainment released a notice stating "Although the entire contract was not suspended, the Courts stated that some parts of the contract was questionable and that is why we are submitting an appeal," and "Till now, we have kept some information from the media as the Courts requested that neither side be interacting with the press during the trial. Now we will reveal that information and release an official statement.

Unless an extremely controversial secret is revealed by SM Entertainment that could turn the tables, it can be said that the contract between SM and TVXQ has already been nullified.

The dilemma that SM faces now is the fact that the agency's other singers may attempt to leave the agency in the same method. TVXQ is not the only reason why SM is being so adamant and firm of their stance in this dispute. To state that conclusion first, there is close to no chance of TVXQ disbanding or ending their activities. This is because all three members involved in this dispute have no thoughts of leaving the group names TVXQ. Some representatives to the entertainment business stated that, "There is a high chance that SM and the three members will become equal partners regarding activities such as the release of a new album in the future."

The problem is how the two sides will fix the contract and the income division. Although the income SM receives from album sales or commercial activities will reduce, it is not so much that the company will run into bankruptcy.

The biggest problem for SM Entertainment is the fact that the majority of agencies works under a system that invests money to raise trainees into singers in a span of 1~7 years that does not guarantee profit after the singer's debut. In the case of TVXQ, if they are allowed to leave the agency stating that the contract was unlawful after gaining popularity, the agencies will have no incentive to continue on with this method of raising stars. This is also why the Fair Trade Committee constantly fails to come to a consensus with agencies when it comes to creating a basis contract.

The reason that SM is being carefully watched for its future actions regarding this trial and the consequences that follow is because this is not merely a problem between SM and TVXQ.


Source: [mk news+DNBN]
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TVXQ's Victory Is A Call For Change




On the 27th, the Seoul District Courts sided with popular group TVXQ's three members and their exclusive contract suspension against SM Entertainment. The Courts decided that the entertainment agency was not allowed to create new contracts without the consent of the celebrity and must not interfere with said celebrity's independent activities in the business. Therefore, a road of free movement has opened up for the members of TVXQ. Although the formal trial procedures are left, this decision seems to shed light on the future of unlawful contracts that are rampant in the entertainment business. Overall, the call for shift from a vertical relationship to a parallel, equal relationship is welcomed. Many expect this dispute to lead into an equal relationship between celebrities and agencies in the future.

Till now, the Korean entertainment business, as the term 'slave contract' implies, has been criticized for its inability to escape unlawfulness and unfairness. The majority of celebrities was put at a disadvantage starting from when their contracts were set up and have become mere tools of agencies. From their official activities to personal actions, everything celebrities did was dictated by their agencies. This was the kind of situation that the three members of the nation's best idol group were in when they went against their agency. If they were in such a state, it is not hard to think of what unthinkable states the no-name celebrities and not-so-famous celebrities are in.

Most domestic entertainment agencies work under a scout-train-management system. Agencies have trained talented rookies and raised the value of no-name celebrities in this organized and investing method. However, although it is easy for a celebrity to become wound up in an unlawful exclusive contract, it is not as easy to escape from his or her entrapment. It can be said that the Courts ruled that, "This is an unfair structure that does not give the members even the bare minimum rights they should have," and "As the members have to pay extremely large amounts of compensation if they go against the contract, it is impossible for the members to wander astray from the contract," because of such methods employed by entertainment agencies.

This decision will bring about a big change to the entertainment business as a whole. This is because the complaints that have been silenced till now may erupt and flood. There is a high chance that the dispute between the members of TVXQ and their agency will take a long time. Right after the Courts' decision, the three members stated that they would file lawsuits for Compensation for Damages and Exclusive Contract Nullification, while the agency has stated that they will be revealing information that the Courts requested they keep quiet from the media and an official statement. This reporter hopes that this dispute will not end a mere expendable argument, but a stepping stone to a new cultural ]change in the entertainment industry. The tyrannical domination of the biased and vertical patriarchal culture that believes that, "Since I have raised them, I can do whatever I want with them," must now come to an end. It is time that a win-win and equal relationship was created in our entertainment business to take the industry to a whole new level.

Source: [yonhap news+DNBN]
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The Need For Change In The Entertainment Agency

First of all, the Courts have sided with the three TVXQ members. In reference to the exclusive contract suspension request submitted by Xiah Junsu, YoungWoong Jaejoong and Micky Yoochun, the Courts laid down the decision that 'SM Entertainment is not allowed to interfere or question any individual activities of the three members or create contracts regarding group activities without the consent of the three members.'

This dispute between the group that is the Hallyu Wave's key player and king of the Asian market and the group's agency, the nation's top entertainment agency, is said to bring large waves of change not only to the entertainment industry, but to the entire nation as well. Many have said that the Courts' ruling has kick started the battle against unlawful contracts while others have said that the decision has completely ignored the trainee-raising method of most entertainment agencies.

The TVXQ case can be seen as a result of SM's 'Failure At Management.' However, that is only the evaluation based on the results. The reason the TVXQ dispute has come so far and deep is because there was a charge forward with a lack of 'communication and respect' on both sides.

One of the reasons that this dispute cant not be the center of attention in the entertainment industry is because the Courts have sided with the members of TVXQ and completely overturned the traditional method of agencies' formation of their contracts. We cannot blatantly say that all 13 year contracts are slave contract. As long as 'communication and respect' is prevalent and a fair income division is put in place, it will be a happy contract. They would be willing to sign onto a contract longer than 13 years at will. They would not think of moving to a different entertainment agency.

If TVXQ's birth is inspected, the process is a system with no room for 'communication and respect.' TVXQ is a team that was created by picking the best out of hundreds of trainees and forming a group. Even the members themselves would not have known what lay ahead of them in the future of their music careers. They were able to snag the title of 'Top of the Korean Music Industry' under the system of a large entertainment agency, and their entrance into the overseas market was probably calculated meticulously. The entire process would amount to a total of 10 years.

As this much time has passed, the members are bound to have looked back on themselves. They are also bound to have increased their musical control and bettered their abilities to select their paths. There were times when they had to stand on a stage regardless of the fact that they did not want to, and they would have had to handle the agency's actions to stop any activities that may 'endanger the group' with a feeling of oppression. This is where 'communication and respect' is needed. As the two sides are the bests of the best, there probably was the need to approach the situation calmly and after much thought. If things have come so far, there were bound to have been instances unknown to the public that pushed it so far. To become irreparable.

In truth, the members are preparing to 'sue for the nullification of the contract and compensation for damages incurred from the income division' while SM is submitting an appeal. SM has also stated that they will be revealing information that has not been told before and releasing an official statement.

When seeing all the big and small disputes that have erupted in the Korean music industry, they all originate from income division problems (unlawful contracts), failure to communicate (respect for human rights), natural limits (musical limits, lack of responsibility as a celebrity), and a interference of the family (interference from a third party).

But the income division problems have been the biggest disputes in this industry. Income division is important to gain trust and investments. If income division is not transparent, that is what a slave contract is. The lack of transparency in income division is what started the lack of human rights for celebrities in the music industry in the mid 90s.

-omitted-

The music industry must use this dispute as a stepping stone towards a change in 'communication and respect'. What can gain more trust than a contract is'communication and respect' and 'a transparent income division'. There is no other 'road to a solution'.

Source: [star news+DNBN]
Translation credits: jeeelim5@tohosomnia.net
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Always Keep The Faith !!!!! :)
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