[TW: sexual harassment]
HYBE has apologized for the body search that occurred at &TEAM’s fanmeeting, causing outrage on both the security measures and their official apology.
Here’s what happened.
HYBE Apologizes After Backlash Regarding Body Searches at &TEAM’s Fanmeeting
On July 9, HYBE LABELS JAPAN issued an apology for the security measures that transpired at &TEAM’s fanmeeting.
&TEAM held an offline fanmeeting on July 8, when fandom LUNés got the chance to meet the boy group in person. However, things took a turn when fans experienced an unfortunate encounter with the venue’s security staff, who conducted a thorough body search.
Following this, HYBE posted a statement on Weverse Shop, expressing their apologies regarding the incident.
Read their full apology below:
“Hello. This is Weverse Shop.
We would like to send our deepest apologies to fans who attended &TEAM’s offline fan signing event on July 8, due to the security body check that was performed by a female security guard.
During a fan signing event, fans and artists can have the chance to have a conversation with each other. With that said, both parties can lead to negative consequences when audio recordings are leaked to the public.
In order to prevent such situation from happening, we have always upheld the strict implementation of limiting fans from bringing electronic devices that are capable of recording audio and fans have consistently cooperated with this standard procedure.
However, a body search was conducted on July 8, since several fans were caught hiding electronic devices on their bodies to sneak them in. We apologize to everyone who attended the fanmeeting for the uncomfortable experience.
Even if it was a concern regarding security, we understand that there are no excuses for making fans feel uneasy. We humbly apologize for this incident.
We will arrange plans for improving security measures, such as applying contact-free methods in security checks, and let fans participate in fan signing events in a more comfortable environment.
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Meanwhile, netizens reacted negatively towards HYBE’s official apology. Many stated how the apology lacked accountability, since the unexpected body search experienced by the attendees was deemed as “inappropriate” and even “sexual harassment.”
Read their reactions below:
“They did fans dirty. They know that fans can take this to court, so they keep blaming them for the whole audio recording thing.”
“What angers me is that their apology is trying to blame fans who are victims in the situation. HYBE should be sincerely apologizing, but it seems that they’re finding a way out.”
“This apology is sh**, I don’t understand why fans ended up being sexually harassed despite spending a lot on their favorite artists.”
“What kind of apology is this? You should apologize for lacking consent.”
“Body searches for security measures? They should be taken to court as a lesson.”
What are your thoughts on this? Tell us in the comments below.
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Written by Riely Miller