On that day, the hearing was about Agencies with alleged sexual favors. The Congress discussed how these issues affects Pop Culture and how to prevent such incidents to occur in the future. Senator Park Chang Sik proposed a bill last August about Entertainment Industry Registration System and instituted Standard Contracts that indicates necessary contract information. Lawmakers and other pop culture experts were present at the hearing.
Kim Hyung Jun shared some of his debut days experiences, ” Unqualified agency should be filtered out through Registration System so the Juniors won’t have to experience such hardships”.
In year 2000, Kim Hyung Jun first set his feet in the entertainment industry as a trainee and debuted after 5 years as a member of an idol group SS501. He first started as a trainee during his Sophomore days. He attended school in Gangnam where an entertainment agency was just nearby and he often received offers to act or model. One agency official would say “Are you interested to be a celebrity? We can have you tested in front of the cameras”.
He answered ” “Yes, several times. I was invited to do street castings” I’m a little bit curious about it but, I really wanted to become a celebrity that time. “
Kim Hyung Jun’s parents objected the idea and he attended some auditions without them knowing it. That time, Kim Hyung Jun was taught about the reality. “I went out to look for some auditions, There’s this small agency where the president’s nameplate was the only visible at their office. A thought came to me that this isn’t right”, But his friends were also victimized. “We can make you debut in no time. If you don’t do this, your friends will”.
Some of them were forced leaving them without a choice even though they don’t have plans to become a celebrity in the first place.
“There was a time where agencies gives calling cards at the entrance of the school. Many offered me to be a model. I accept the offer with some of my friends. If you have a thousand won then you can do a photoshoot. My friends have more or less a million won, My friends can do the photoshoot so I borrowed money from them. But the shooting keeps on delaying and eventually the money we released went to nothing. I didn’t report it to the law because I thought they won’t believe a thing since I’m just a minor”
Temptations be it from a big or small agency continued.
“I didn’t attend school and went to practice for 10 hours instead. I became frustrated and asked myself, “If the situation continues, how will be able to survive?” “When am I gonna debut?”. Some small agencies promised for a quick debut and my desire to try it goes stronger.”
His younger brother has became a victim of those entertainment agencies as well. Kibum-ssi debuted last 2006 from group ‘XING’ and released one single album. Their agency promised them to be in TV but, that promise was kept into nothing. He sighed while saying “My brother terminated his contract on that agency”. After that his brother debuted as a member of ‘UKISS’ but, then again he had conflicts with the agency and left the group and pursue his career in Japan.