IVE fans are criticizing the television network KBS for its treatment of Jang Wonyoung following the group’s now-viral lip-syncing accusations.
During the 2022 MBC Gayo Daejejeon (also known as MBC Music Festival), IVE’s Jang Wonyoung and Leeseo performed a special cover of IU‘s “strawberry moon.” Shortly after the performance, a video of it was uploaded to YouTube that featured the two group members singing while sitting.
Immediately following the upload, the group and their agency, Starship Entertainment, faced criticism for what viewers called “obvious” lip-syncing and allegedly recycling the audio from a cover video posted to IVE’s official YouTube channel in July 2022.
- “So they don’t want to be singers. They just want to sit pretty like dolls.”
- “I wonder if both of them are so busy and exhausted that they can’t even sing a single track live…? Because, no matter what the excuses, singers should sing on stage. And idols are singers, too. This is kind of disappointing.”
- “Obviously lip syncing. I wonder if it doesn’t embarrass them at all. I would understand if their vocal chords are all damaged and they’re just not in the condition. But for singers to go on stage to sit and act like they’re singing? How is that acceptable?”
- “I can’t believe IVE won daesang, though… What a shame.”
- “The members should absolutely be mortified. A lip synced performance? TBH, they don’t even look like they want to put in the effort to make it at least seem real. Is this all it takes to be singers? Just to look pretty on stage?”
On January 5, KST, KBS uploaded a video to its KBS News YouTube channel titled “‘Mouthing while sitting’..The Hit Girl Group Criticized After Lip Syncing” where it discussed the lip-syncing issue.
The thumbnail image for the article shows Wonyoung and Leeseo with the caption “‘Are They Really Singers?’ The Hit Girl Group Caught Up In Criticisms.”
Fans claim that KBS’s way of reporting this issue is “disrespectful” towards the group, stating that many other idols lip-sync during performances. Others say the network should have handled the issue differently because Wonyoung is an MC for KBS’s Music Bank.
wah kbs wtf wonyoung is your MC pic.twitter.com/k7vvFCPbDm
— 짱B (@Jangbee102) January 5, 2023
All of her hard work & time (when she's already so incredibly overworked!!!) for a show that can't even reach 1% in views & has only brought her so much grief from other fandoms, and you can't even give her or her group the respect they deserve. The fucking audacity
— starship girls 💚 (@starshipgirlz) January 5, 2023
all of the wonyoung "controversies" ended up in korea's national news its actually crazy how famous she is there that they HAVE to talk about it on television.. from hairpin to strawberry to lip syncing?? everyone just milking her popularity for views and its always kbs
— kin. (@jangcentre) January 5, 2023
In light of the video, fans began mass emailing KBS, demanding the network show more respect for Wonyoung and IVE. Other fans have even begun requesting that Wonyoung leave her position as MC for the music show.
[📢] Mass Email Event
— WONYOUNG GLOBAL (@WonyoungGlobal) January 5, 2023
I wish wonyoung would just walk out in the middle of a mubank interview.
but she won't do that because she's a sweet kid. You don't deserve her KBS! #KBSApologizeToIVE #KBSApologizeToWonyoung #KBSApologizeToLeeseo
— jeans (@jeans_0901) January 5, 2023
It’s no surprise that fans have come to Wonyoung and Leeseo’s defense: Wonyoung recently went viral for opening up to fans, saying that she gained strength from their support.
it's a bit unusual for wonyoung to go on pm late at night and she talked about gaining strength from us 🙁 she said if someone is giving her a hard time, she can just say "i have dives, you're jealous right?" and that "everything will be okay since i have you" pic.twitter.com/PffraAcOkD
— kin. (@jangcentre) January 4, 2023
It gives me strength to know that I have an unnie who cheers me on
I have an unnie
I bet you’re jealous
— Wonyoung’s messages to fans
Following her messages, fans trended “#WeLoveYouWonyoung” on Twitter and sent more messages of support to the singer.