In Particular, YG Entertainment Was Judged To Have Often Left Their Idols Inactive, Supported Some Members Unfairly, And Most Recently, Abruptly Postponed Promotions For Their Hit Song TREASURE.
Entertainment agencies persecuting Kpop idols are such a common occurrence in this industry that fans will never stop talking about it. YG Entertainment is no exception, and has experienced quite a bit of controversy over their treatment of current artists, namely TREASURE and BLACKPINK ( Black Pink ). However, YG is probably the agency with the best treatment of their former idols.
In particular, YG Entertainment was judged to have often left their idols inactive, supported some members unfairly, and most recently, suddenly postponed promotions for TREASURE’s hit song “DARARI”. YG received a lot of protests for not promoting TREASURE. On the other hand, YG Entertainment was also criticized for not letting BLACKPINK make a comeback as a group.
However, YG’s treatment of its former artists is on a completely different level. PSY , Lee Hi , 2NE1 , and others now have nothing to do with YG anymore. But they are still treated well by the agency.
2NE1 recently became a hot topic after their surprise reunion at Coachella 2022. The group prepared their special stage in complete secrecy, which raised suspicions that this was due to legal issues, as all four members had left YG to join another entertainment agency.
People believe that 2NE1 kept their reunion a secret to avoid copyright conflicts with YG. In particular, netizens believe that in order to perform 2NE1’s songs, the group needs to obtain YG’s permission, or that YG must first transfer the rights to their song and 2NE1’s trademark. By law, 2NE1 will also face copyright conflicts with YG if they release new songs or promote with the 2NE1 brand.
However, responding to 2NE1’s possible comeback and the use of the group’s name, YG simply said, “We have no opinion on this matter. There will be no legal action on our behalf.” This is a very generous gesture coming from YG’s side.
In addition, Lee Hi got her YouTube channel despite leaving the agency and defending YG for the lack of a comeback. YG is also different from other entertainment agencies because it releases the MV of each artist on a separate channel. For example, all YG artists, including former artists such as PSY, SE7EN , 2NE1, Lee Hi, and current artists such as BIG BANG , WINNER (II) , iKON , BLACKPINK, TREASURE have their own artist channels with their full content, rather than all published on one shared channel.
According to Lee Hi, YG was happy to give him the rights to his YouTube channel after leaving. And he’s not the only one either, with CL , PSY, Epik High , SE7EN, and more all getting their channels back from YG in full rights.
“I wanted to continue to develop my channel, so I asked and YG gladly gave me my official channel,” said Lee Hi. Even after leaving YG for AOMG, the singer didn’t hesitate to defend his old agency when fans complained about the lack of a comeback. According to him, unlike assumptions, he was not forgotten or persecuted at YG.
“New artists will receive a lot of attention, investment, and projects. I’ve also been a new artist. I don’t think of myself as a victim, so I prefer that you don’t think that too,” said Lee Hi.
Korean entertainment companies often do not allow their idols to interact with former artists on social media due to various reasons. However, even after leaving YG, artists still regularly come to the agency and meet their juniors.
Recently, WINNER’s Sandara Park and Lee Seung Hoon also accepted the “I Love You” challenge on Tiktok, which made fans happy. YG has angered fans on several occasions, but the way they treat former artists still satisfies them.