Is the K-pop industry letting up on its crackdown on love?
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Is dating actually banned in K-pop?

Every now and then, K-pop agencies are seen “asking for fans’ understanding” or even apologizing when news of their artists dating gets out.

Dating has long been considered a taboo in K-pop, a market filled with young stars promoting themselves as not just celebrities but a real person who could potentially be your friend, family or even romantic partner.

Should an artist be apologetic to their fans or lie about finding someone they love?

If it takes too long to address a rumors about a relationship or a statement uses the wrong expression, be prepared for the wrath of diehard fans. News of celebrities dating almost always results in criticism from fans, albeit not all of them.

Such negative reactions often lead to tangible consequences such as decreased album sales, protests or even a boycott of the artist’s activities.

Knowing full well the potential hazard of what dating can lead to, agencies are said to ban their idols — as they’re referred to in K-pop — from dating altogether, leading to rumors of non-dating clauses in contracts or trainees’ phones being confiscated to make it impossible to meet anyone.

But with times changing and awareness on human rights rising, what are K-pop companies actually doing to control the uncontrollable?

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