Upcoming Global K-Pop Group’s Company Faces More Criticism Amid Fears The Members Are Being Exploited
Last year, GBK Entertainment announced they would be debuting a new global girl group, MEP-C, and revealed five pre-debut members from South Korea, India, and Russia.
Esha, Aria, Nova, Chiu, and Roa were slated to make their debut with the group and had their own personal Instagram accounts made to connect with fans. Four months later, the line-up has completely changed, and the accounts are gone with a new line-up announced. So what happened?
GBK Entertainment will debut a new girl group named MEP-C
The group consists of members from multiple nationalities including South Korea & India
The members are Esha, Aria, Nova, Chiu & Roahttps://t.co/LzkFpscClg pic.twitter.com/3panMwYN7s
— nugu promoter (@nugupromoter) November 29, 2022
With a growing fanbase, netizens were excited to cheer on the upcoming girl group and its diverse line-up of talent chasing their dreams.
The company explained that members of its pre-debut line-up for MEP-C would fall under one of three categories. “WANTED,” “BUSTED,” and “MISSING.”
GBK Entertainment announces they will open a fan-voting system to decide which trainees …
#Kpop #KpopNews pic.twitter.com/1DJCV8htTZ
— PTKOREA (@PT_KOREA) February 12, 2023
The “WANTED” trainees are those who have successfully signed a contract to train with GBK Entertainment. Those who are “BUSTED” have signed an exclusive contract and are being considered for MEP-C’s debut line-up, and “MISSING” indicate those who failed to secure an exclusive contract or have transferred to train under another company.
Profiles of the five pre-debut members were released, each showing them as “WANTED.”
The profiles ranked the members’ visuals, dancing, performance, rapping, character, and vocals. The company quickly came under fire from many netizens who felt exposing the members’ shortcomings in such a way was too harsh.
In February, the five pre-debut members’ personal Instagram accounts were all deleted and the group’s Instagram was wiped clean before photos of new members were added. They announced that the five former pre-debut trainees had chosen to terminate their contracts and would not be debuting with MEP-C.
GBK Entertainment then unveiled its plans for a unique concept where 12 out of 50 trainees would be selected to train in the Girl’s Universe program. Those 12 trainees would then be subject to fan voting to secure their place in the debut line-up. Currently, the company plans to debut 5-7 of the 12 Girl’s Universe trainees.
The profiles for the new pre-debut trainees have been subject to criticism for the filter-heavy photos that many considered a downgrade in quality from the previous pre-debut profile pictures.
With the unexpected change, netizens are beginning to worry the company is taking advantage of global K-Pop hopefuls, especially after it was discovered that many of the current trainees are in an online training program.
Amid the growing criticism and mixed reactions towards the company, GBK Entertainment has revealed six out of twelve pre-debut trainees who will be considered for MEP-C’s final line-up.
6/12 have been revealed for a potential spot in MEP-C debut lineup 💕🌌 pic.twitter.com/WbWFKitXhx
— MEP-C + XIN Fanbase (@mepchype) March 1, 2023
For more on the criticism of the global K-Pop group’s company, check out the article below:
Upcoming Girl Group Gains Criticism From Netizens After The Release Of “Brutal” Pre-Debut Profiles