Kakao Entertainment is under investigation by the Fair Trade Commission after being embroiled in allegations that it intentionally slandered rival idols through the Facebook page “Idol Lab.”
According to the industry, the Fair Trade Commission (FTC) sent an investigator to Kakao Entertainment’s headquarters in Pangyo, Seongnam, Gyeonggi Province, on Nov 16th for an on-site investigation.
It has been pointed out that Kakao Entertainment intentionally slandered celebrities belonging to other entertainment agencies through the Facebook page “Idol Lab.” In fact, this page is suspected of promoting celebrities belonging to Kakao’s affiliated companies and intentionally avoiding promotion for other celebrities from others.
According to JoongAng Ilbo, the FTC plans to check when Kakao Entertainment acquired “Idol Lab” and why it is operated without revealing its relationship with Kakao Entertainment to find out if it was for publicity and viral acquisition. This can be seen as a violation of the Display Advertising Act.
Kakao Entertainment’s “Idol Lab” has been embroiled in controversy over copyright infringement as it has reproduced and distributed various entertainment contents without permission. This page has posted entertainment news and screenshots of OTT broadcasts from various media companies, as well as photos and pictorials featuring celebrities.
As the controversy surfaced, Kakao Entertainment closed the “Idol Lab” page, which has reached 1.32 million followers before being shut down.
Kakao Entertainment has been aggressively investing in the entertainment and media industries since it was launched in March last year with the merger of Kakao Page and Kakao M.
It has been growing in size by acquiring large and small entertainment planning and advertising companies and film production companies such as Antenna, Metaverse Entertainment, Dolphiners Films, and Studio K11O,… IST Entertainment, Starship Entertainment, EDAM Entertainment, High Up Entertainment, Antenna, BH Entertainment, Management SOOP, J.Wide Company, Awesome Entertainment, VAST Entertainment, King Kong by Starship, Ready Entertainment, and many other entertainment agencies are affiliated with it as well.
An official from Kakao said, “It is true that the Fair Trade Commission conducted an on-site investigation at Kakao Entertainment’s headquarters, but it is difficult for us to provide details on the purpose of the investigation,” adding, “Some rumors about slandering allegations are clearly not true.“
“That Facebook page has been operated through an agency, and we deleted all posts and closed the entire page last month due to inexperience and lack of caution in operating copyright issues,” they said. “In the process of delivering various news, this page has reproduced media reports, positive as well as negative that became hot topics on the Internet. Even artists from Kakao Entertainment’s subsidiary were found to have a number of negative news covered by this media,” claimed the official.
“We would like to repeat that this is because the page was operated on the basis of following hot topics, and it has no intention or purpose to slander certain artists. Nevertheless, we deeply feel responsible for not being careful in managing the page regarding copyright infringement.”