[Opinion] Tzuyu Scandal + CHN/TW/KR Hot Pot

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Ok, first of all, this is an opinion post from one person only (me). I will talk about the Tzuyu scandal and what I think this will imply to the entertainment world and even to some extent, what this means to diplomatic relations. I talked about it a bit before in an entertainment update’s gossip corner. But it is a huge deal now and hence “earned” its solo post. This is not a classic cdramadevotee post so read at your own discretion ^^ For people who had been following the blog for a while, you know I like to share my thoughts. Hope this time, I won’t hurt anyone’s feelings. And of course, feel free to add your thoughts. Oh and this has some interesting discussion on netizenbuzz so people can check that out too.

Why a solo article now?

I didn’t think it was such a bid deal on weibo, but turns out I was wrong. I was talking with my parents about the Taiwan election and both had heard about this scandal. My mother is mostly interested in polical and economical news so the fact that even her heard about this means it is a huge deal. But what makes it officially super important is the role this scandal had during the Taiwan election! Yes, the election happened on January 16th 2016. And pretty much everyone agrees that this scandal had a heavy impact on this year’s results, getting it some international attention and earning the winner extra votes.

Taiwan Election:

This corner will have a bit more political content. I don’t have a heavy historical backgroung on Taiwan’s independence movement so I will stay as neutral as I can. In 2016, Taiwan has its very first female president, Ms. Tsai Ing-wen. She is the leader of the more radical party that wants independence from China. Her opponent for this election was led by Eric Chu, a more Nationalist Party.

I don’t think it is a bad thing if Taiwan decides to be independent and to fight for it. During the past years, Taiwan became more and more dependent on China economically, but in general, there is still a strong bad opinion there over China. This election can be a wake up call for both of them and I believe things will start moving very fast. At this point, nobody has the monopoly of power and anything can happen.

The role of social media and entertainment:

This year’s election had an increase turn out from younger votes who voted in majority for Ms.Tsai. There is a high chance this increase in number is due to the whole Tzuyu scandal which had shaken heavily the independentists in Taiwan. Esteemation says that this scandal earned her about 1,000,000 votes, a very significant amount. Even Ms. Tsai mentionned the scandal on the day she was elected as she says: “This particular incident will serve as a constant reminder to me about the importance of our country’s strength and unity to those outside our borders.” source

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The hashtag “周子瑜” has 140M tagged posts on weibo (as a reference Run Brother is the most popular variety show in China and is x261 the number of tagged posts compare to this tag whereas Legend of Zu is x8. This scandal is trending, but it did not explode the social media on weibo just yet). Cfensi released an opinion article about how Weibo/Sina works and which may throw some light on this issue aka why it is not more trending. It is hard to understand what is China’s next move.

Entertainment wise:

JYP and Tzuyu’s darker future as victims of the political scene:

I would say that JYP and Tzuyu are the victims of social media and after bad move and bad move, they were sacrificed for this political turnout. Let’s start with JYP’s case. It is very obvious to everyone that he is aiming at the Chinese market. With his recent producer award at the weibo festival, Jackson Wang from GOT7 on Go Fridge! and 2PM at different other variety shows, their goal can’t be more clear. And it is understandable since China is getting bigger and bigger entertainment wise (articles this week revealed its film market importance will even overtake US’s) source

Forced by the international, Korean and Chinese netizen community, they did a few bad moves (at least for their own interest). By releasing the apology video on the day of the election, they angered the Chinese more and created more patriotism among the Taiwanese, to the point of no return. Now, it is impossible to limit the consequences. JYP’s stocks had being decreasing by more than 5% I believe and it will only go down for the next few days. 2PM’s schedule are cancelled for Shanghai Dongfang and Anhui channels’ Chinese New Year festival. China is known as a big country that has a big ego. It probably won’t let this calm down easily… Although a visionofjm had pointed out in the comment section of another article that seems had calmed down a bit (with hate coments being deleted and CCTV starting to show Twice on tv again).

As Tzuyu, I sincerely hope she can stay strong. As she is only sixteen years old, she will need the support of her bandmates to go through all this. She didn’t do anything wrong, but became the center of all this attention. We can blame the guy who called her out at first, but I am sure even him didn’t expect such a huge scandal would come out. Hope this can be a lesson to the producers to stop debuting minor kids who are probably emotionally not prepare for all this. Her entertainer path is pretty much closed in China, but I am sure she can be welcomed back to Taiwan if needed.

I am reading on weibo a lot of support for Tzuyu and a lot of negative comments. Some people declares she is only a sixteen year old girl and hopes the public will stop putting her in such an awkward position politically. They think it is unfair to prevent 2PM and Twice from performing in China because they are not related to this scandal at all. Other people are mad at her and are even criticizing Jackson, another member of JYP family with a strong patriotic feeling towards Taiwan. Here is some opinions I found online:

  1. JYP did not handle this problem properly and actually added oil on fire by their poor use of words.
  2. Tzuyu didn’t do anything wrong but the over exposure by the Taiwan media just before the elections is what ruined her image.

Korea vs China Entertainments:

A last word. Korean and Chinese entertainments are very different. I often see kpop fans thinking they know better than everyone. To be frank, I feel like kpop is becoming a big bubble and the fans shouldn’t be allowed to impose their thoughts on everyone. On this blog, we rarely do comment translation. This is bringing just too much negative energy to the international follower community. It is appreciated to read thoughts on your favorite idols, but always bringing negative point of views to the light is just unnecessary.

China is not Korea. There are so many difference between the two. Korean entertainment is very colorful, based on popular music, oversaturated with idols, is controled by big agencies who “produce” groups by the dozen, has  a lot of body gag and aegyo. Chinese entertainment is focused on ballad musics, talk shows, has a lot of realistic problems such as money, etc. They are different, they use different social media. Please consider those factors when comparing those two entertainment circles. Both has qualities and flaws so please stop bringing one or the other down.

Intellectualkitten’s quick add: Archidisign talked about how China is not Korea and I totally agree with her. But there are also some important similarities that I would like to point out. In the last two years, C-Ent has a lot more young and idol actors. Among them, a lot are singing OST for their own projects, a new phenomena. In the movie and drama world, China is very different from Korea. But if you look at the variety shows, a lot of Korean shows are adopted to Mainland China. Also, variety shows are gaining in popularity. A lot of veteran actors are going on these shows; whereas before, they had more mysterious image. On the other hand, negative comments on social media does not affect a celebrity as much as in Korea. For example, T-ara’s career died after their scandal with Hwayoung. In China, a star will raise no matter if it is harsh or positive feedback by the public. If they are trending, they are popular. As for the whole Tzuyu scandal, I did not read much about it :”D… It will probably affect JYP’s prospects in the Chinese market, but as time pass by, things may turn around for them.

27 thoughts on “[Opinion] Tzuyu Scandal + CHN/TW/KR Hot Pot

  1. coffeenlucia says:

    I’ve been reading quite a few hurtful Weibo comments about Tzuyu. (I’ve been trying to find positive comments, and literally have found one so far.) As a Taiwanese-American I feel strongly about this issue, but I did not know how sensitive this whole Taiwan vs. China conflict really was. Purely from an economic standpoint, JYP made the wrong decision. His more ambiguous two apologies may have been acceptable, but now with this third apology has flip-flopped into garnering support from neither China nor Taiwan. When you add the fact that he basically sacrificed the well-being of one of his artists who is still a minor, it makes his decision seem even more foolish.

    In fact: In JYP’s post on Weibo, some C-netz are not satisfied with the apology, saying he ought to post the apology on Facebook / Instagram / Twitter in English / Korean / Chinese. Some are elated that his stocks have dropped. The comments about Tzuyu are even more acerbic.

    The true loser from all this is Tzuyu. I feel bad for her and hope she stays strong.

    Like

    • archidisign says:

      I saw some of these translated comments floating around the netizenbuzz discussions, and indeed they are very harsh.:/ I would suggest not reading the weibo comments at all. Weibo is not known for having friendly netizens. In oppressed countries such as China (and a lot of other Asian countries), people are using the anonymous internet to let go of their frustrations. Yop, I didn’t expect this situation to grow so big either. JYP made a lot of bad management choices in the past years, but this is probably his worst (along him kicking out Jaeboum from 2PM). Tzuyu is so sad. At least this situation only got her hate from China and support from the rest of the world ^^ Hope she stays strong and receive the care she deserves under the current situation.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “Context is everything”. Someone living in China will have a different view to someone living in Taiwan and South Korea. I hope that many international fans will understand this. As you archidisign pointed out, many people are well… ignorant. And some individuals are too quick and uniformed to impose their opinions. I hope that this political issue will resolve soon to stop adding to the tension between China and Taiwan.

    Liked by 1 person

    • archidisign says:

      nod nod. As an international observer, we have access to so much less information than them, we can’t immerse completely in neither point of view. That’s why I hate seeing netizens who don’t know much trying to convince others of their ideas and creating conflict among each other. With the current situation, Taiwan would be stupid to let it cold down. Politically, it is their best time to act on this strong nationalism wave. v_v

      Like

  3. Cat says:

    I am really glad a post was done on this. I was just talking to my mom last night and she told me while she agrees with me, it’s better not to be a turtle with its neck sticking out. Poor Tzuyu. Taiwan is her country and she raised that flag. Bravo. Taiwan is democratic. I hope it the day will come soon where it is accepted as an independent nation.

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    • archidisign says:

      Well, seems like things will start moving. I am curious to see the next moves that will come out and just hope we are at least done with dragging Tzuyu in the dirt.

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  4. Sweetstrawberry says:

    I am veryyyy sorry for the innocent 16 yo Tzuzy. I don’t know her and never heard of her until now but she did nothing wrong to be dragged down like this. The backlash on her were too harsh and her management company should have protected her better. I am very sad for her and hopes she can stay strong and positive through these rough time.

    Like

    • archidisign says:

      I feel so sorry for her!! She seriously got all those attention not because she was waving that flag, but because she was an easy target. Poor girl…

      Like

  5. Al says:

    I feel like this isn’t entirely JYP or Tzuyu’s fault, but I do put a little blame on JYP for trying to enter the Chinese market without knowing its cultural taboos. Chinese people know that this whole Taiwan-independent movement is not accepted in China and many Taiwanese entertainers in China have faced backlash because of it too. Waving a Taiwanese flag probably didn’t seem very harmful but it should have raised a minor concern to JYP when it was recorded/released. After all, the flag does symbolize the Taiwan independence movement, which is a very sensitive topic in China.

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    • archidisign says:

      I agree. JYP always like to put under the spotlight their international recruits (Nichkhun in 2PM, Tzuyu in Twice, Jackson in Got7 and even Fei from Miss A). This is not a wrong tactic, but if they don’t do much research on the target audience, they are going to fail miserably (like in this case). I don’t think waving the flag was wrong per say, but because they are in kpop industry, they need to be extra careful. There are so many fans in the world who will spot any of their mistakes ….

      Like

  6. this should be another reminder for any Taiwanese artist/actor out there to be extremely careful when promoting in Mainland. Don’t want anyone to pull an A-mei:-/
    This whole Tzuyu mess has clearly affected Taiwan-China relationship (which China govt values a lot) esp considering the horrible timing (during the elections) so I am not surprised that the Chinese govt took measures to lessen the damage by censoring her name, deleting hate posts as well as showing TWICE’s videos on CCTV. This should be a good sign that it’s starting to get a bit better, but as you had pointed out, no one knows China’s next moves…poor Tzuyu, i hope she finds strength fast!
    Agree 100% about the last part. I’m tired of Int K-pop fans being ignorant about China, China-Taiwan, and the C-entertainment. Context is key and one should knows enough before making a comparison/opinion that could be deemed unfair…

    Also, thank you for the brief info regarding Taiwan’s elections, as I am not too familiar with them. I think Taiwan would do just fine on its own. I talked to my mom about this scandal last night. She too knows about it and agrees with us. I find it lucky that my parents moved to Canada as they were able to have an outside perspective and a more open mind regarding topics that would have very nationalist mindsets in Mainland…

    Liked by 1 person

    • archidisign says:

      There are hundreds (and prob more) of Taiwanese entertainers in China and I am sure a lot of them are very proud of their Taiwanese identity. They do need to be careful, but it is not the problem of only one mistake. It is a problem of timing, identity, place, even gender. Hope the small positive changes the Chinese gvt is doing now will keep going…
      Welcome! I am not really pro at political things so I tried to keep it simple ^^ Taiwan has so much culturally,politically and economically to do well by itself. But if they go with a radical seperation, it is at their disadvantage since China is so far a big partner economically speaking. Yop, same. When I went back to China last year, I found that unconsiously, my family there seems to be way too dependent on the Chinese governement.. In that sense, we are lucky as immigrant!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. SailorS says:

    Well! This is a very sensitive topic in both China abd Taiwan. The timing of the scandal causing me thinking that it is almost pre-planed. The girl is a tool or scapegoat in this political fight. Her management company seem to not be able to handle the situation well either.

    Liked by 2 people

    • archidisign says:

      Agreed! To be frank, just for the timing, it does feel a bit calculated. I don’t know by who (Chinese government who miscalculated or Taiwanese government to get supporters or just public acting on their own), but Tzuyu is definitely the sacrifice in all this.. poor girl

      Like

  8. intellectualkitten says:

    Agree with SailorS, Tzuyu and her company are only the scapegoat in this political war. My opinion: It is not to China’s advantage to provoke Taiwan at all. Taiwan is officially part of the nation of China rightnow. If this situation is dealt poorly, then China will lose a part of it’s economical strength and be even more isolated… I hope the C-netizens stop saying Taiwan needs China, because the two community has a symbiont relationship😡

    Like

    • archidisign says:

      China had been quiet passive (from my understanding) over Taiwan these years although they do act like a big fat ego centered mom over Taiwan… As expected, c-netizens are acting a bit like babies, but the truth is that those netizens don’t have much to say in this matter (not a democratic country, remember?). So yeah, we can only wait for the governments’ move.

      Like

  9. Love your courage for posting about this because as much as I wanted to, I still don’t know this much! It has become such a complex issue which came from a seemingly simple & innocent gesture. I also didn’t know that the winning president got a lot of support in relation to this issue.

    Just to add, Kpop fans (mostly international) have been hating on Lin Gengxin for throwing some kind of shade on Tzuyu’s apology. I understand where their hate is coming from but they should also understand that he’s a Chinese actor and his view on the issue is definitely in support of his country. I also don’t think I can fully express my opinion regarding the political situation between Taiwan and China because I’ve always been pro-Taiwan (for quite shallow reasons >_<).

    Thank you for enlightening us and for bravely taking on such a complex issue, dear! Keep it up❤

    Like

    • archidisign says:

      Hehe, thanks. I don’t know the full picture 100% either and just decided to write down all my thoughts in one post. This scandal definitely caused a lot of people who are passive before to go to vote and manifest their democratic rights and hence giving the new president extra votes. Of course, she would had won anyway based on polls before the voting. But this changes the situation a lot. Without the scandal, the headlines would probably be like “First Female President in Taiwan”, but now, it is more like “Taiwan wants to part ways with China”.
      Haha, didn’t know that and I find Lin Gengxin so funny (is he an easy target for i-fans because he did a project with kpop’s YoonA?) How can he state his pov when his best friend Mark Zhao is Taiwanese. Celebrities probably shouldn’t state their opinion since half of their colleagues are not a 100% mainland. But yes, Lin Gengxin has definitely more rights to judge this situation then the international fans.
      xD Nothing wrong with being pro-Taiwan❤ I think I like China more than Taiwan culture wise, but Taiwan has so much potential to become their own country. I don't know what would be the best politically, but I am not too worried hehe

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh wow thanks for your very helpful information _<

        Yes, he is!! So now K-pop fans are even taking it against him by saying that he's only bitter that Yoona friendzoned him (definitely not sure about that lol). His post on Weibo was something like, "asks to apologize but didn't memorize the script" <– something like that with a crying x laughing emoji =))

        Like

      • archidisign says:

        HAHAHA, pls. Yoona may be a goddess in Korea, but Lin Gengxin worked with so many goddesses in China too (Fan Bingbing, Liu Shishi, etc). This is not the first time he got friendzoned xD I wouldn’t be surprised if he is secretly dating. At least he has a positive attitude and don’t get sad over this sillyness. Kpop fans are exaggerating and I don’t see how them hating on c-ent artists can be a solution to anything. sigh…

        Liked by 1 person

      • Love that you said that he has worked with Goddesses already❤ no offense to her fans but looks-wise, she doesn't seem to be a goddess to me! haha that's true! Love him❤

        Like

  10. Autumn says:

    Im so mad at JYP, I couldnt believe he would throw her under the bus like that. She didnt do anything wrong and had to apologize like that. In my opinion it wasnt necessary to show her like that, especially after the releases of the other statements. The company should have crawled before China apologize or maybe even JYP himself but they should have protected their underage artist better😦

    Like

  11. Hi, my first time here:

    I think it would be better if the one that apologizes was JYP. They could said that Tzu Yu was a minor and thus she wasn’t aware about the political issue as she didn’t attend school ever since she was trained in Korea while she was only 13.

    Like

    • archidisign says:

      Hi there!
      JYP did apologize though:/ And yes, there are so many better ways for JYP to handle this. That video was just the worst mistke they could do, something that satisfied no one. Poor Tzuyu who is still so young.

      Like

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