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FAN SHIP FALLOUT COMMENTARY

As we discussed in the last issue, Celebrity fans are taking their fandom too serious. As social media has brought the public closer to their favorite celebrities, it has also created a mechanism for harmful negativity. The fallout continues across the globe.

Fanatical fans, called “shippers” in Asia, have gone out of their way to support their favorite stars against negative comments. But they also create their own controversies by fictitiously matchmaking other celebrities as real couples. This leads to shipper wars against different couple matches. It is like rival sports fans tearing a part an opponent's team.

Celebrity agencies, especially for vocal stars, tend to deal a lot of fan service which fuels speculative rumors. Fans cannot get enough inside information about their idols.

Because of this access to their idols, many hard core fans believe they have an ownership stake in their celebrity. They feel that they invest their time and money supporting them so they are entitled to a perfect dream relationship with that person.

The balancing act between illusion of the perfect star and the reality of a star's personal life and well-being is tenuous. In the past month, one Korean actress took the unusual step of addressing her dating rumors, while a famous couple had to address a wild, false rumor of a divorce based upon one innocuous photograph.

How actors and idols are perceived in Asia is critical to their careers. A person with a scandal can have their career projects curtailed or terminated by producers. A tainted star is not good for business, since producers are selling perfect, pristine, wholesome fantasy of each leading man or lady.

Park Min Young had a successful romantic comedy series called What's Wrong With Secretary Kim? It was a an office romance of a hard working secretary whose boss, Park Seo Joon, falls in love with her. Despite her rejections, the boss prevails in the end. Because of their onscreen chemistry, fans thought that they had to dating in real life. They started to gather SNS evidence to prove the rumors.

Initially, silence to the rumors fueled more rabid speculation that the rumor had to be true. But Park made the extraordinary statement to deny the rumors.

 

 

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VOLUME 18 NO. 7

EXAMINE THE NET WAY OF LIFE

MARCH, 2019

 

IN THIS ISSUE:

 

FAN SHIP FALLOUT

FOUND BUT NOT LOST ON THE INTERNET

GAME BARF: BYTES

iTOONS

WHETHER REPORT

NEW SHOW HACK!

©2019 Ski

Words, Cartoons & Illustrations

All Rights Reserved Worldwide

Distributed by pindermedia.com, inc

The Hankook Ilbo interviewed Park about the rumored chemistry between her and Park Seo Joon. It all started after a leaked article claimed that the two have been secretly dating for quite some time. But it was quickly denied as unfounded by both their respective agencies and actor Park Seo Joon himself. But fans often take these denials as misdirection and proof that the stars are dating in secret. 

In the interview, Ms. Park revealed that she did try to date secretly once but it was not with Park Seo Joon. “I tried having secret relationships but it was not with Park Seo Joon. [Park Seo Joon and I] never met over seas. If we were a secret couple, why would I put a photo of it on Instagram? I wouldn't have left any traces,” she said.

The idea of Korean celebrities dating overseas as caught on as an AH-HA! smoking gun in the scandal generator game. Celebrities often go overseas to promote their movies, series or themselves through fan meetings. Also, in winter, many celebrities go over seas to warmer climates for holidays. Suddenly, anyone seen at an airport could be connected to a couple holiday.

Ms. Park emphasizes that none of the supposed evidences of having matching couple-items are true. She did not match with Park Seo Joon on purpose, the supposed couple trip was with her mom, and all of it just caused her frustration and anger. “You can clearly tell that these 'evidences' were forced but people started believing them. Should I call it the box of evidences? (laugh) I looked through them, and there's no truth to any one of them. There's no truth to the shoes, hats, or anything. While I was on my way to this interview, my mom told me to bring her passport and show them the immigration stamps, so that I can prove that the trip I went on was with her. They compiled a lot of so-called evidences that had no credibility, and I felt horribly misunderstood,” she said.

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She also raised her concerns that the dating scandal overshadowed the efforts of the production staff and fellow actors who did their best during filming. She expressed her apologies for the scandal and hopes that the interest will be focused back onto the drama. “I didn't feel it required an explanation. But as the topic became more and more viral, I began to feel apologetic towards everyone who worked so hard on the drama with me. I spent a difficult day because of it. That's why I decided to explain everything. No matter what happens --through this interview -- I hope that I can stop being a burden or having a negative impact on everyone that poured their passion into this drama. The dating rumors started as soon as the drama ended, and I felt so guilty that it cast a shadow over the drama. I hope that this interview will help the source of interest to turn back towards the success of the drama,” she said.

“I want to emphasize that the dating rumors are not true. I don't understand how someone can say I'm dating someone by putting together false evidences and rumors. My final say about the dating rumor? I'm not dating and I'm not getting married,” she said sternly.

She first tried to laugh off the rumor as harmless, but the situation got out of control with more and more articles and social comments. It began to affect her work and the people around her.

The positives of being a well known celebrity also has its burdens. One's personal life is deemed to be open season for gossip journalists, paparazzi and fan rumors.

A rumor of marriage can limit opportunities because some projects want to continue to project a single, wholesome virgin character, especially in some commercials directed at young women. If an actress is rumored to be in a relationship or marriage, the reaction is that she will soon have a child and her career will be on indefinite hold to raise the child. A production company does not want to deal with a morning sick or moody actress. The actresses' own agency does not want to lose out on money making opportunities. As n Park's case, such rumors can overshadow the good work of others in her drama which causes shame and embarrassment to her.

On the other end of the spectrum, a Chinese media outlet caused a controversy by publishing that a Korean power couple had divorced. The Chinese publication claimed that actors Song Joong Ki And Song Hye Kyo had divorced based upon one airport photograph of Hye Kyo not wearing her wedding ring. There was no reporting or seeking comment from the actors or their agencies. It was a simple leap of speculation from a simple observation that a married woman was not wearing her wedding ring. But in many cultures, people do not wear their wedding bands.

The Song-Song couple came to fame by co-starring in a hit television series called Descendants of the Sun. They got along well doing that shoot and they became close. Afterward they were spotted together in New York City. They denied that they were there together; it was merely a coincidence. But less than a year later, they surprised the world by announcing their marriage. As a result, the Song-Song overseas denial has become a blueprint for rumor sleuths to make bold, unsubstantiated statements on celebrity dating.

What fueled the break up speculation was that Hye Kyo had finished up a passionate drama called Encounter with Korean leading hunk, Park Bo-gum, who happens to be Joong Ki's best friend. Again, fans cross the line of television acting to actors in reality thinking that the divorce rumor could be true because of the drama script and kissing scenes. But as actors continually stress time and time again, kissing during dramas is acting and not reality.

What is the recourse for celebrities having their reputations tarnished by false rumors?

A netizen, who spread rumors about Jung Yoo Mi and Na Young were having an affair, was arrested by Korean police for criminal defamation. Many entertainment agencies have filed complaints against commentators who post false, crude, or harassing comments about their clients. In Korea, there are strict defamation laws to protect the honor and reputation of individuals. But once nasty comments and false rumors turn into scandals, it is impossible to erase the harm that has set into the mindset of the general public.

 

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FOUND BUT NOT LOST ON THE INTERNET

This is Wallace's giant bee,the largest known bee on Earth. After going missing for nearly four decades, the species has just been rediscovered in its native Indonesia. Wallace's giant bee (Megachile pluto) gets its name from its original discoverer, Alfred Russel Wallace, the British naturalist famous for independently conceiving the theory of evolution through natural selection alongside Charles Darwin. Wallace collected the bee while on an expedition in Indonesia's North Moluccas islands in 1858, describing it as a “large black wasp-like insect, with immense jaws like a stag-beetle.” The tiny titan then went more than a century without being spotted by Western scientists, only seen again by entomologist Adam Messer in 1981, who was able to observe some of its behavior on a number of small islands. But since then, no one had documented any encounters with the huge bee. That all changed when a search team visiting the North Moluccas last month laid eyes on the bee for the first time in 38 years.

A giant bee the size of a man's thumb was thought to have gone missing or extinct.

Source: gizmodo.com

 

But then, in the same week:

A species of large tortoise not seen since 1906 (and believed to be extinct) has been rediscovered on a remote part of the Galápagos Islands, kindling efforts to conserve the critically endangered animal. The female is extremely old and a bit underweight, but she is still very much alive. The species to which she belongs, the Fernandina Giant Tortoise (Chelonoidis phantasticus), was listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as being “critically endangered and possibly extinct.”

So animals in nature are very shy and/or scientists are too quick to call a species extinct.

Source: gizmodo.com

 

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GAME BARF: BYTES GAMING

GAME BARF NUMBER ONE:

Console multiplayer action games are the continuing battle field for developers. You may be the next great thing one day, then torpedoed the next.

Player Unknown Battleground broke the mode by having the first large battle royale mode. Good graphics and easy streaming by Twitch players gave it a cult status. Then the game engine developer brought its own to the forefront with Fortnite, a game that is constantly adding new loot and maps (in its seasons). Most content creators flocked to Fortnite because it was quirky, glitchy and a meme generator.

But some old games sometimes find a revival between updates. Sea of Thieves seemed to be on the cusp of being one of Twitch streamers upper echelon platform after nearly a year of irrelevance. In January, 2019 popular streamers were piling onto the newly-refurbished ship as a break from nonstop Fortnite play. Sea of Thieves briefly hit the top number of players. Then, Apex Legends was released into the gaming wild. During the final week and a half of January, Sea of Thieves saw a string of days in which it regularly peaked at an hourly average of over 100,000 concurrent viewers, sliding into second or third place on all of Twitch alongside Fortnite and League of Legends. The Apex Legends crushed the field.

Pro players and full time content game creators were soon back to playing Fortnite. The diversions from their regular patterns helps a content creator keep their subscriber base engaged by their reviews (through intense original release rushes). Though many games are premium freebies (with the ability to buy in-game upgrades), many of the largest game developers still count on gamers plunking down $40 plus on an upgrade/new title.

GAME BARF NUMBER TWO:

Pro gamers are put through training hell in order to command the world championship stage. They spend their waking hours in training dormitories practicing game moves until their fingers become instinctive robotic appendages. They have no life outside the game sphere. They have little to no free time. The focus is solely on winning.

So it is rare when a human feature story emerges from this cultural rubble. Flandre is a Chinese League of Legends player who plays for Snake Esports, a very popular team in China. The team is not doing so good right now, having won only one of their six games so far in the league. Fans of the e-sport team blame Flandre because of his admiration of the Korean female k-pop group (G)I-DLE. Fans think he should focus less on (G)IDLE and more on his play.

GAME BARF NUMBER THREE:

To say pro gamers cannot have a real life is wrong. They are human beings that can get drawn into real life problems. Popularity does put a flood light on scandals in their personal lives. A Korean racing model, Ryu Ji Hye,confessed on her live web broadcast that she allegedly had a child aborted that was conceived by her ex-boyfriend, who is a pro gamer. Abortions are illegal in Korea (except for a few exceptions). However, netizens harshly criticized Ryu's announcement as they defended the pro gamer from the allegations. No one knows the true story between the two individuals, but it does show that even in the intense dynamics of pro gaming culture, real world issues and scandals are possible.

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THE WHETHER REPORT

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