HYBE taking legal action against 'malicious' Weverse commenters

K-pop agency HYBE revealed the legal measures being taken against perpetrators of malicious activities toward 10 of its labels’ artists. [YONHAP]

K-pop agency HYBE outlined the legal measures being taken against the perpetrators of malicious activities toward 10 of its artists on the company's Weverse app on Friday, emphasizing that it will show no mercy.

The artists, signed to six of HYBE’s labels, are BTS, Tomorrow X Together, Seventeen, Baekho, Hwang Min-hyun, fromis_9, Enhypen, Le Sserafim, NewJeans and &Team.

The individuals are accused of ill-intentioned posting, privacy violations, impersonation, damaging comments during livestreams and leaking the artists' personal information.

“Artists are in the position to be criticized and watched, as they are public figures,” HYBE said in a news release. “The artists, however, should be respected and protected as humans as well.”

“Due to this, we have taken legal actions against those who have continuously and maliciously violated the artists’ rights and interests, which can negatively impact the artists’ mental state,” it added.

HYBE regularly initiates legal proceedings against individuals it suspects of threatening its artists with techniques including defamation, personal attacks, sexual harassment, the spread of false information, and ill-intentioned criticism.

The company allows fans to report malicious posts on its platforms. It also monitors other social media channels and can collect evidence of wrongdoing, including malicious posts that have been deleted, the agency said.

HYBE submitted more new complaints regarding malicious acts toward Tomorrow X Together in the second half of 2023 than it did in the first half, the company noted in a news release.

“Malicious commenters are currently undergoing criminal punishment,” the agency added.

HYBE has issued a strong warning to those who violate the privacy of its artists, stating that it will adopt a zero-tolerance policy toward such individuals.

“We filed criminal complaints against [the individual] for violating the Act on Punishment of Crime of Stalking,” the company said on BTS’s Weverse channel regarding an individual who had sent a number of mail and packages to a member’s house, causing damage to their family. “[The individual] has been subjected to criminal penalties following the prosecution’s investigation.”

“In order for K-pop to expand into a sophisticated industrial ecosystem in the future, some problematic malicious comments or blindly belittling behavior must disappear,” HYBE said.

To find out more about HYBE's artists, visit Celeb Confirmed!