Many Korean netizens could not believe that Big Hit gave such confusing rules and arrangements, even caused a disadvantage for BTS – the group that made a great contribution to the construction of HYBE’s headquarters.
Big Hit – recently renamed HYBE, has started moving to its new headquarters at Yongsan Mall in Yongsan-gu, Seoul since March 22. According to Newsen’s report, more than 1000 employees of Big Hit have started moving to this 60,000 square meter office including 7 basements and 19 upper floors. With such a large area, HYBE headquarters can accommodate all HYBE subsidiaries, including BIGHIT Music, BELIFT LAB, Source Music, Pledis Entertainment, KOZ Entertainment and HYBE Labels Japan.
However, after the media published more information about the structure and operation of the building, many netizens find it difficult to understand and even dissatisfied with a rule set by Big Hit. This is said to not only obstruct the artists but even considered unfair treatment toward BTS – the group with the greatest contribution to the construction of this building.
If you want to use the practice room, you have to book in advance, BTS is no exception?
Accordingly, one of the issues that is of concern is the accessibility to the practice rooms for artists. It is known that in this new headquarters will consist of a total of 3 floors for practice rooms. However, the artists under HYBE Labels cannot freely use them but must pre-register through a reservation system.
Since there are so many artists from HYBE’s subsidiaries, they will have to use the practice room reservation system to ensure fairness for all. BTS, the group that has great contribution to establishing the whole building, also has to book a reservation every time they want to practice. This also means that BTS does not have their own practice room.
It is also worth noting that all HYBE subsidiaries will have to pay fees to use the practice rooms. The reason is because they are originally from separate companies, so collecting this fee is an obvious route in the process of maintaining the facilities in terms of corporate accounting.
This explains why Big Hit has added ‘real estate leasing business’ to the business purpose section of the review report at the upcoming general meeting of shareholders. Apparently, Big Hit does not distribute ‘free’ practice rooms to anyone but sees it as a monetization business, even with the smaller companies that it has acquired .
Korean netizens criticized Big Hit for limiting the artist’s music activities
As soon as information about the HYBE’s practice room reservation system of the HYBE’s building was announced by the media, it became a hot topic on Korean online forums. In a short time, this related article has attracted nearly 2000 comments on Theqoo, mainly criticisms targeting Big Hit for hindering their own artists.
Accordingly, Knetz pointed out that Big Hit should have made each artist in the company a separate practice room, or at least each affiliated subsidiary has its own practice room (for example, BigHit Music’s practice room, Pledis’ practice room, Source Music’s practice room etc …) Meanwhile, they force artists to share a system of practice rooms even though the company’s building is very large, even proposing each subsidiary to pay practice room fees – which also means taking the profits the artist makes to pay for the practice room.
Many fans are angry that Big Hit is not a ‘poor’ company that has to ‘withdraw’ money from subsidiaries just because of the practice rooms, even using the artist’s practice as a form to take advantage of real estate business. In fact, fans pointed out that Big Hit can spend large sums of money on company furniture, for example, each swivel chair named ‘Aeron Chair’ placed in Big Hit’s office has value estimated up to 1,395 USD. However, they do not spend money to build separate practice rooms for the artists because they want to use them for ‘business’.
Some Knetz believe that Big Hit should prioritize the artist’s creative activities first, and create best conditions for them to practice most comfortably. However, with the new HYBE’s rule, a group that wants to practice must see if they have booked a room, have the same schedule with anyone, and when the time is up, they must quickly leave the practice room.
Moreover, people thought that BTS would have their own practice room because they deserved it, but eventually they were also treated as many other artists for ‘fairness’. Knetz believe that this is not the fairness that Big Hit wants to aim for, but simply wants everyone to use the reservation system to facilitate real estate rental activities. Many fans are even more upset when they know that Big Hit will open their own ‘BTS museum’ in the building and charge visitors – that is, they continue to profit off BTS’s image – but they cannot treat 7 members better.