Korea Communications Standards Commission Imposes Highest Level Of Penalty Against Mnet's

The Korea Communications Standards Commission (KCSC) has imposed the highest level of sanctions against Mnet’s “Produce” series for manipulation of votes.

On August 10, the KCSC stated, “Due to an unprecedented level of manipulation in the broadcast, we have imposed fines on all seasons of the ‘Produce’ series. For manipulating the results of the viewers’ votes, all four ‘Produce’ seasons will receive a fine, which is the highest level of sanction possible.”

Earlier that day, the KCSC had held a general meeting at the broadcast headquarters in Mokdong, Seoul. The final decision was made in combination for all four seasons of “Produce,” including “Produce 101,” “Produce 101 Season 2,” “Produce 48,” and “Produce X 101.”

Mnet’s “Produce” series has been accused of manipulating the votes of individual episodes, as well as arbitrarily manipulating the votes to change who had been eliminated and who had not, and broadcasting the results as if they were legitimate. The KCSC concluded that the first season of “Produce” also had evidence of manipulation in the fourth round of votes as well as the first round.

The KCSC stated, “The key point of the program was to use viewer participation to form a group based on the viewers’ votes alone. In order to do this, they solicited votes through paid texts. Not only did they manipulate the results, deceive the viewers, and obstruct fair public perception, but the most serious issue is the betrayal of the hard work of the participants in the audition program.”

The KCSC will decide the amount of the fine later based on the precise content, degree, time period, and frequency of the offense under Article 109 of the Broadcasting Act.

Also at this meeting, the KCSC issued a warning to the SBS drama “The King: Eternal Monarch” for excessive product placement.

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