A K-pop star who was involved in a chat group whose members have made inappropriate sexual remarks about girls—the celeb even watched sexual videos of women taken without their permission—slid into a YouTuber’s direct message inbox and his message made her uncomfortable.
But she apologised for calling him out.
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The K-pop star, Lee Jong Hyun of CNBLUE fame, had sent her two messages: one last week, and another a few days ago. The first message was harmless: he told her how much he enjoyed watching her videos. The second message was one that she found problematic: he wrote, “Your belly fat is so cute (laughs).”
Jong Hyun is currently serving national service and is supposed to be laying low and reflecting upon his past mistake (refer to first paragraph). But while reflecting, he obviously found time to slide into girls’ DMs and comment about belly fats.
The YouTuber, Park Min Jung, had revealed his DM via an Instagram story on August 28, where she had posted a screenshot and asked, “Huh? Is this really CNBLUE’s Lee Jong Hyun?”
Following that, the CNBLUE guitarist received a lot of backlash and many criticised him for continuing to reach out to women despite his recent legal entanglement. After the flurry of criticisms, he deleted his Instagram account and hours later, he announced his departure from CNBLUE.
He released a statement through his agency, FNC Entertainment:
Hello, this is Lee Jong Hyun.
First of all, I apologise to everyone who has been hurt by my improper actions and those who have been greatly disappointed.
In addition, this is a bit overdue, but I would like to announce that I’ll be leaving CNBLUE. I am sorry to my members who have been hurt because of me, and I have also told them about my decision to leave. I am ashamed for disappointing fans who have believed in me.
All the members, including myself, are currently serving military service, so it took time to communicate with everyone. To my agency who have been waiting, I’m sorry and thankful.
I deeply regret my mistakes and will gladly receive criticisms from people. I’m sorry for
I will deeply regret my faults and receive the opinions and criticisms of many people. I’m sorry for creating controversies over unpleasant matters.
On the same day, the YouTuber uploaded a post on Instagram, apologising for uploading the Instagram story.
Hello, this is Park Min Jung . I’m sorry to have created controversy after uploading last night’s Instagram story. Firstly, CNBLUE Lee Jong Hyun sent me a direct message around last week, but I knew he was on hiatus so I just ignored it. After that, he sent another direct message, which made me a bit uncomfortable. I was worried that he would send this kind of message to other women and wanted to stop it. For this reason, I uploaded the Instagram story, but I would like to apologise for uploading a private conversation. I’ve removed the Instagram story, and I will be careful to not act rashly in future. My apologies.
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안녕하세요 박민정입니다. 어제 밤에 올린 스토리로 인해 많은 논란을 일으킨 점 죄송합니다. 우선 씨엔블루 이종현님께 저번주쯤 첫번째 다이렉트가 왔었는데, 자숙중이신걸로 알고 그냥 무시했습니다. 그 다음 또 다이렉트가 오길래 솔직한 마음으로는 조금 불쾌감을 느꼈습니다. 다른 여성분들께도 메세지를 하고 안좋은 일이 생길까봐 막고자 하는 마음도 있었습니다. 이러한 이유로 스토리를 올리게 되었는데, 개인적인 대화내용을 공개한 점에 대해서는 정말 죄송하다는 말씀을 드리고 싶습니다. 현재 스토리는 내린 상태이고 앞으로 이런 경솔한 행동을 하지 않도록 조심하겠습니다. 죄송합니다.
But here’s the thing: she shouldn’t have to apologise. Yes, it was a personal conversation, but when he sent out that message, he should be ready for the possibility that it might be exposed or leaked. And in no way did he indicate that the conversation was confidential.
Secondly, she sensed something was wrong and given his history, she felt the need to alert everyone and more importantly, girls whom he could potentially send such messages to. Does she need to apologise for doing what she think would protect other girls? No.
This reminds us so much of the Monica Baey case, who only managed to get her school, National University of Singapore, to notice her after her posts about her friend’s boyfriend who took a video of her in the shower without permission went viral.
Min Jung alerted her followers to someone who made her feel uncomfortable in order to warn them, and we don’t see anything wrong with that.
If you bear witness to a sexual harassment or assault, alert the police immediately. If you know someone who has been sexually harassed or assaulted and needs help, contact AWARE’s Sexual Assault Care Centre at 6779 0282.
Image: TPG/Click Photos