Knet criticized Melon for controversial actions with BTS, TWICE, and SEVENTEEN

The fact that Melon is taking a misleading action with some groups like BTS, TWICE, or SEVENTEEN is making Knet extremely uncomfortable.

Melon is one of the most famous digital music sites in Korea, but recently this music site has made a confusing action for some of the current popular Kpop groups.  According to SBS information, they found that if they search the keyword BTS on Melon, they will find that the group has a folder tag ‘J-POP’ (Japanese Pop) alongside other tags like ‘rap  ‘,’ hip-hop ‘, and’ dance ‘.

It wouldn’t be worth mentioning if there was no ‘K-POP’ tag next to the group’s name.  Only the tag line ‘J-POP’ appears next to the genres that the group pursues.  More notably when expanding the search, SBS pointed out that both TWICE, SEVENTEEN and IZ * ONE are also classified under the category ‘J-POP’.

Regardless, IZ * ONE can also be tagged ‘J-POP’ because of the group’s active market, the remaining 3 groups, BTS, SEVENTEEN, and TWICE, are said to be unsuitable for this tag.  If they display the tag ‘J-POP’ and do not include the word ‘K-POP’ in the genres, the audience will easily misunderstand that these 3 popular 3rd generation idol groups are Japanese. 

When contacted by SBS, Melon said, “We are not categorizing them into K-pop and J-pop. They are listed as such if they have Japanese albums. If you go into their details, they are listed as ‘Korean boy group’.”


However, SBS noted that other streaming sites such as Bugs and Genie did not make this categorization and that it was easily mistakable to users, especially since Japanese artists are also marked as ‘J-pop’. The confusion is already happening, as fans who are noticing that their artists are being listed as ‘J-pop’ are wondering why the Korean artists are being categorized as such.

At the end of the article, SBS stated: “With BTS, many people know they are Korean groups, but there are some other artists that will be misunderstood as a Japanese group with Melon’s tagging when they have the tag’ J-  POP ‘without the’ K-POP ‘tag.”

Besides, Koreans are also very sensitive and do not like Kpop idols who are labeled as Japanese idols or Kpop music is called Jpop music.  Many people believe that Melon has unreasonable explanations and criticizes this music site for intentionally assigning domestic artists the name ‘J-POP’.

Others pointed out that if these groups release English or Chinese music, they will become a group ‘US-POP’ or ‘C-POP’?  And if so, why doesn’t Melon have a ‘K-POP’ tag even though they deliberately want to categorize pop genres?

Some comments:

1. This makes me feel iffy. I don’t think it’s right to label K-Pop groups as J-Pop. I’m sure international fans who know K-Pop well would be able to tell the difference but what about the new international fans who are just getting to know these groups? I think it might cause a misunderstanding where they might think of BTS as a J-Pop group.

2. Melon’s really starting to feel like a Japanese company. Fandoms, please leave the site. They’re labeling all the popular K-Pop groups as J-Pop. They’re probably setting the foundation for the future in 50 years where they can use this as evidence to start claiming K-Pop as theirs. When have you ever seen singers from other countries release so many Japanese versions of their own albums? Just release English versions from now on.

3. What is this?! Is Melon Japanese now? Why are K-Pop artists being labeled as J-Pop? Why would you want to introduce your own country’s artists to the world as Japanese? This is so ridiculous, I’m deleting the Melon app from today on.

4. Melon’s reasoning makes no sense

5. Anything a Korean artist sings should be labeled under K-Pop. Just because they sang a song in Japanese doesn’t change the fact that Koreans produced it and Koreans sang it. Why does Japan get to take the label when they had no part in producing it?? Then what does that make BTS’ ‘Dynamite’? American Pop?????? Get rid of this J-Pop tag immediately before we start boycotting Melon.

6. Just stick to Bugs Music or Naver. Neither of those sites label K-Pop groups as J-Pop. Seems like Melon has come into some investment money by the hands of the Japanese. Labeling BTS as J-Pop just means we should no longer be using their services.

7. I’m sure fans who are well versed in K-Pop won’t find this confusing but I can see it causing a lot of misunderstandings for the first-time K-Pop fans. I think we shouldn’t cause these confusions in the first place. Melon is a popular Korean streaming site which means there’s a bigger chance to confuse. Please fix the J-Pop tag immediately.

8. BTS, Black Pink, and TVXQ are all labeled under J-Pop. There must be another reason behind Melon’s pathetic excuse.

9. Are they insane? I have never seen such an insane company. I won’t be listening on their site anymore. They should know that this is wrong and fix it but instead, they’re making up excuses.

10. So Melon is a pro-Japanese company now…

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