“Unanswered Questions” Issues Statement Following Calls From NU’EST’s Agency For Apology Over Broadcast On Chart Manipulation
“Unanswered Questions” has released a statement regarding its broadcast about sajaegi (digital chart manipulation) that included a mention of NU’EST W.
The January 4 episode of the SBS investigative show included an interview with a man who claimed that his personal data had been used for digital chart manipulation. He explained that his e-mail address was stolen by someone to make accounts on a music site, and the person used the account to buy NU’EST W’s song “Dejavu.” Pledis Entertainment denied that their agency has engaged in any illegal or fraudulent acts related to digital chart manipulation and asked for the program to apologize and correct the error.
Read their statement from January 6 below:
While reporting for the January 4 episode entitled ‘Manipulated World – Is It Digital Sajaegi? Or Viral Marketing?’ we met with an informant who stated that his e-mail address had been stolen. On June 16, 2018, the informant received 46 e-mails from Genie Music congratulating him on joining, and they each had different IDs. Also, we were able to confirm that NU’EST W’s song “Dejavu” was purchased 41 times using these IDs. The production team aired footage of the contents of his e-mail inbox after obscuring it, however one frame (1/30 of a second) was omitted from the obscuring and it showed that the song was NU’EST W’s “Dejavu.”
After the episode aired, the ‘NU’EST Digital Streaming Team’ composed of NU’EST fans revealed that while a fan was personally registering accounts on Genie Music to download NU’EST’s song, they used a random e-mail instead of their own, and that was the e-mail that belongs to the informant who appeared in the show. The ‘NU’EST Digital Streaming Team”s claim is that this was simply the error of a fan who purchased the artist in question’s song several times using someone else’s e-mail and it is not related to NU’EST’s agency Pledis Entertainment.
If this is true, then we express our deep regret that suspicions arose because of the producers’ poor handling of the footage. Also, we express our deep regret over the fan’s mistake to have repeatedly made purchases using someone else’s e-mail account.
Also, the producers of ‘Unanswered Questions’ announce that it is up to an investigative agency to reveal the list of artists’ names connected to the so-called digital sajaegi addressed in this episode, and if there is a request from an investigative agency, we will share the results of our investigation. Also, we continue to check submissions related to digital sajaegi, and we can carry out a follow-up report if necessary. End.
Following the release of this statement, Pledis Entertainment has responded, “We cannot see the statement from ‘Unanswered Questions’ as a proper apology. It is regretful.”
They went on to say, “We sent an official document today to the producers this morning as well to request an apology. We requested that the production team acknowledge their mistake, apologize, and make a correction to their report. It would be difficult to say that the released statement has filled our requests.”