No:ze, who is disciplining herself due to power abuse controversy, is starting to return by resuming SNS activities. However, her NFT project remains an unanswered question.
According to Wikitree’s checking result, the official website of No:ze‘s NFT project “Dance With NO:ZE” disappeared as of Feb 2nd. It has been about 5 months since allegations of false advertising arose. Ironically, it coincided with the resumption of No:ze’s SNS activities.
Not only the official website, but also Discord, Twitter and KakaoTalk’s open chat rooms have been suspended. On Discord, only No:ze’s fans are occasionally posting chats complaining, “I want the project to be stopped.” In KakaoTalk’s open chat room, the manager is hiding every chat that comes up.
Previously, Wikitree raised suspicions of false advertising in No:ze’s NFT project. They pointed out that although No:ze’s NFT project is promoting the protection of choreography copyright through NFT technology, there is a lack of legal basis in reality. They also mentioned the fact that No:ze’s side tried to make a profit of 5 billion won by selling her selfies.
At that time, No:ze’s side announced a strong legal response through Twitter, but only “show-off” words.
On the website of No:ze’s NFT project, there were phrases such as “a project in which choreography that has not been properly recognized as copyright due to atypical IP is recognized as copyright”, “NFT-applied choreography videos can prove their registration dates and copyright holders”, “Effectively protect choreography copyright through NFT”...
However, this is more like false advertising. NFT technology and copyright are two completely different concepts. NFT (non-fungible token) is an irreplaceable token that blocks data to prevent the modification of online transactions (such as transaction, shipment, sales, return, deposit, withdrawal, and revision) and connects cryptographic technologies in chains. Copyright refers to the right of the author to their work. There is a difference that the former is closer to the concept of ownership, not copyright, and lacks a legal protection system, while the latter is based on legal grounds. Ownership refers to the right to use, profit, and dispose of the goods in question under civil law.
No:ze is promoting that applying NFT technology to her choreography video can protect choreography copyright. However, this applies NFT technology to the “video” itself, and if you purchase this NFT, you will have ownership of the “video”. Copyright for the “choreography” in the video cannot be obtained. To put it more easily, when we buy a book at a bookstore, we have ownership of a tangible object called a book, but the copyright of the book still belongs to the author. Choreography corresponds to No.3 of the examples of works presented in Article 4 (1) of the Copyright Act, and copyright can be protected by registering with the Korea Copyright Association.
No:ze is the first to issue PEP (Profile Pictures, NFT that allows you to set a profile online) rather than choreography videos, raising doubts about its authenticity. There will be 10,000 selfies of No:ze to be issued in this way, and each will be sold for 550,000 won (including VAT). The expected profit is a whopping 5 billion won. Dancer In Ji Woong told Wikitree, “If fans buy No:ze’s NFT profile pictures, they can attend her fan meeting. I think this is completely out of line with the purpose of protecting choreography copyright. No:ze’s agency is only borrowing her fame to sell NFT.”
Dancer Poppin’ Hyun Joon suggested a slightly different direction from the perspective of the choreography copyright law. In particular, he told Wikitree, “To protect choreography copyright, I think we can start with Kpop cover dance. If you use a work that is expressed in a way that fits perfectly with music (more than four bars), you should protect intellectual property rights and allow creators to make profits. For example, you cannot attach copyright to motions such as moonwalks or headspins, but I think it is possible with particular works.”
Currently, No:ze remains silent about suspicions surrounding the NFT project. The dancer is trying to make a comeback by quietly deleting her official website and resuming her social media activities, even though there are still unresolved questions.