Apparently, some agencies that have their trainees participating in the Mnet girl group trainee survival show, “Produce 101,” are not formally registered with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, stirring controversy.
Even though the trainees participating in the show have not formally debuted, the agencies managing them must be registered if they are regularly appearing on television. If the agency is not officially registered, it (and related persons) is subject to maximum two year imprisonment or 10 million won fine (approximately $8200).
In response to the controversy, Mnet states, “We started inquiring about and collecting the registration from agencies after being contacted by the Korea Creative Content Agency. We advised companies that do not have their registration to register. All agencies with trainees remaining in the program are planning to register by March 15.” It also stated it will ask all the other agencies that participated in the program to register.
“Produce 101” is a survival show through which 101 trainees from 46 entertainment agencies compete to become one of the 11 members of a project girl group.