Pledis Entertainment CEO Addresses Fans' Concerns About New YouTube Policy, Privacy Violations, And More

Pledis Entertainment CEO Han Sung Soo has responded to various fan concerns about privacy violations by sasaengs as well as the agency’s recent announcement that artists’ music videos and other content would be uploaded only on Pledis Entertainment’s channel moving forward.

First, the CEO spoke about violation of SEVENTEEN’s privacy and the steps they have taken to prevent repeat occurrences:

Hello, this is the CEO of Pledis Entertainment, Han Sung Soo.

First, I would like to thank SEVENTEEN fans for all of their love and support on behalf of everyone at Pledis Entertainment. I would also like to apologize to the fans. Though I always make an effort to listen to what fans have to say, I think I’m still too lacking to be able to satisfy everyone. I’m writing personally today to take responsibility for my shortcomings.

First, after the end of SEVENTEEN’s concert, “2018 SEVENTEEN Concert ‘Ideal Cut – The Final Scene’ In Seoul” on November 4, we confirmed that some fans had violated the privacy of SEVENTEEN. We heard accounts from staff members that were present, and we also received various documents from fans regarding the incident. Thank you once again to all the fans that helped us through this process in order to protect SEVENTEEN.

Those who violated SEVENTEEN’s privacy have been permanently banned from the group’s official fan club and are now unable to participate in any fan club events held by the agency. More details will be revealed in a following post.

Second, we’ve come across some claims regarding friendships and relationships between Pledis Entertainment managers, staff, and fans. Upon investigation, we were unable to find any evidence to support these claims. However, we did confirm that some staff members had posted on their personal social media accounts about our artists’ schedules and personal lives. Moreover, regarding the fact that what our staff members say on-site in interactions with fans could lead to misunderstandings, I take full responsibility as CEO.

The staff members in question will receive disciplinary action in the form of formal education and reduced wages. Moreover, moving forward, all employees of Pledis Entertainment, including myself, will take monthly classes regarding personal social media maintenance and engaging with fans. In the event of a repeat occurrence, we will take appropriate disciplinary action after making clear where the responsibility lies. We will take special care to make sure that personal schedules and comments will not be revealed without permission from the artists. In the future, we will make every effort toward the protection of our artists, filling in the holes that we missed before.

He went on to explain the decision to change the agency’s YouTube policy:

Our third point is with regards to our YouTube policy. We deliberated a lot about this, and we understand the concerns that fans have. It’s something that the agency has to do to help SEVENTEEN grow, but we’ve made fans worry, and for that, we are sorry.

As SEVENTEEN and other Pledis artists continue to grow, we’ve had a lot more to think about. Whenever we thought it would be nice if we could do more for our artists or if we had more clout, we always heard, “not yet.” Even as we were proud that we had grown, we also keenly felt our limitations as an agency that has yet to fully grow. We wanted to create a better foundation in order to give back to our artists and employees, who work so hard.

A K-pop entertainment agency not only manages artists and produces content, but the agency itself must become a platform. The agency must become a large platform and develop influence so that the scope of what its artists can achieve also grows. While running Pledis Entertainment, we’ve realized that there are things we cannot do with just our artists’ talents and the agency’s support.

Our new YouTube policy is the first step in growing our influence and moving forward with the times. It is a decision that we made in order to help the Pledis artists grow into a larger team. I believe that our agency artists can be so much larger than they are now. We did everything we could to cater to each team. I apologize once more for not thinking more on how to make fans understand, but I hope that now, you will wait and see what my decision yields.

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