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2015-05-05 17:21

By Kwon Ji-youn



JYJ member Kim Jun-su’s rare appearance on nationwide television on April 30 has sparked new interest in the opposition New Politics Alliance for Democracy lawmaker Choi Min-hee and her “JYJ law.”

Choi tabled a revised law on April 14 that aims to prevent broadcasters from banning or blacklisting artists without a justifiable reason and the main beneficiaries of this revised law, if passed, will undoubtedly be JYJ.

Kim’s performance on EBS’s “Space Sympathy” marked his first appearance on a televised music production in six years.

Choi seems to think an understanding between SM and the broadcasters is behind JYJ’s prolonged absence from such programs, and industry insiders agree, saying broadcasters do not find it necessary to cross swords with entertainment cartels such as SM.

“Despite the Fair Trade Commission’s (FTC) request in July 2013 for JYJ’s previous agency to refrain from interfering with the group’s business activities, JYJ is still unable to perform on televised music shows because of unfair corporate practices on the parts of major broadcasters,” Choi said in a statement.

The revision included sanctions against such broadcasters.

“JYJ, which contributed to the introduction of a standardized contract between agencies and artists, should not be subject to such unfair corporate practices that are more or less groundless,” Choi added. “The FTC’s administrative order cannot control closeted attempts at interference, so the Korea Communications Commission, which holds authorization and approval rights, must intervene.”

Since 2009, when JYJ members left their then-agency SM Entertainment claiming unjust contract provisions, JYJ has been unable to secure televised music gigs, which the group claims was because SM sent letters to 26 television channels in 2010 requesting them not to cast JYJ on their shows.

In 2012, SM and JYJ reached a mutual agreement to terminate all contracts between the two parties, which appeared to conclude the prolonged contract feud.

But the ceasefire didn’t last long.

SM had agreed not to interfere with JYJ’s activities, but in July 2013, JYJ, comprised of Kim, Park Yu-chun and Kim Jae-joong, found it necessary to file a complaint with the FTC regarding such ongoing intervention. The FTC’s much-anticipated ruling decided that SM had indeed been interfering with the business activities of their former employees and warned them not to do so in the future.

And yet Kim’s tears say not much has changed since then.

Choi’s move has set in motion what may become a prolonged battle, and Kim Jun-su’s tearful performance on “Space Sympathy” has added fuel to fire. He sang for just 150 people in a small studio, but the results were dramatic, with the media now questioning JYJ’s nonattendance on the country’s three major channels. Audiences have also began doubting the respective broadcasters’ integrity.

Choi’s JYJ law is not just in the interest of JYJ and their current agency C-Jes Entertainment, experts say. It’s trying to put an end to improper enforcement of power that is keeping talented artists and entertainers from doing their jobs.

“I don’t understand why it’s so difficult for us to perform on television, but it is,” Kim said on “Space Sympathy.” “And this is why I may never forget today.”

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