The future of idol group DBSK is uncertain. DBSK’s 3 members (Micky YooChun, Xiah Junsu, Youngwoong Jaejoong) and SM’s trouble is too deep. Although they state that there will be no disbandment, in reality, disbandment is more than likely. Even if they avoid the worst case scenario, disbandment, it feels like their departure of SM is set.
On the third, a acquaintance of the 3 members said, “settlement with SM has been tried multiple times. But their differences couldn’t be settled. The reason this went to court is because they couldn’t find a point to settle.” Thus, they concluded that more attempts for negotiations was useless.
The acquaintance that the reporter met is someone who has watched over DBSK very closely. He has experienced all ups and downs since debut until now. According to him, DBSK advocated for only one thing. They wanted conditions of the contract to be eased. However, it has gotten to a point where the conversations between the two parties have gone nowhere.
He stated, “they asked for the contract term and earnings distribution to be revised because everyone could tell it was irrational. They attempted to negotiate until the end but they felt that SM was avoiding them. Therefore, things got emotional for both parties and the 3 members are even more angry with SM’s response.”
After the initial reports about this incident, SM sent documents on the 1st and the 3rd. On the first, they reported that this problem was due to the makeup company investment and they will work it out. After the contract conditions were reported, they responded that members were paid 11 billion Won and were given foreign cars as presents.
In response to this, he stated, “the nature of this instance is the unfair contract, not the make up company. However, SM has not mentioned the contract conditions and have continued to use make up company issues to play with the media.”
Additionally, he discussed about the 11 billion Won. He said, “let’s say SM is right and that they were paid 11 billion won for the 6 years of work. This is the pre-tax profit. After taxes were paid, and this amount is divided by 6 years, and 5 members, this is less than 200 million won per member. For the first half of this year, the profits from album sales in Japan is 2.5 billion Yen (33 billion won). However, DBSK doesn’t even receive 200 million won per year.”
The total number of albums released in and outside of Korea is 48. Out of these, including singles and full albums, 1.96 million copies were sold in Korea. In Japan for 4 full albums and 27 singles, 8 of those sold over 100,000 copies, and one sold over 250,000 copies. Including south-east Asia, at least 4 million albums were sold.
He also criticized abnormal methods of calculating methods. According to him, “SM requested money for back dancers and food. Basically, almost all of the expenses were paid for by DBSK.” He added, “besides this, SM created a local subsidiary and divided the earnings of DBSK into pieces. For example, SM Japan and Avex divided earnings, and this was also divided with Korean SM. With complex divisions, the money for the members were reduced.
Also, he stated that the foreign cars were given to them under the company’s name. “They received cars from SM after an award ceremony. However, the cars were registered in SM’s name and is not owned by DBSK.”
According to this acquaintance, the three members of DBSK are tired of SM’s play with the press. They have no intention to solve this with mere words, and are extremely upset that SM is exaggerating only one side of the story, distorting the truth. He said, “they expected SM to twist words with the press but didn’t realize it would be to this extent. If SM continues this method, I think it would be nearly impossible to work together with SM again. I suspect that they will part with SM and try to find a different solution to settle this.
Their departure from SM does not bean the disbandment of DBSK. He asserts that there is no problems in relationships between all the members. They are still like family and agree that in any situations, they must work together. He said, “Truthfully, all five had the same intentions. But in the process of negotiations, there was differences between the members. That is why only 3 members decided to fight with their company. They all agree that the contract conditions are irrational, it is just that their way of handling it is different.”
Micky YooChun, Xiah Junsu, Youngwoong Jaejoong’s will is stronger than ever. The acquittance reported that,
They are also determined to get back together as 5 members under the name DBSK. He revealed, “even if the 3 members leave SM through lawsuit, this only means departure from SM. This does NOT mean the disbandment of DBSK. It may be after the 2 remaining members leave, or if they perform from 2 different companies; the 5 want to continue with DBSK.”
Well then, if 3 members leave SM, would they still be able to use the name ‘DBSK.’ Upon researching in the Industrial Property Office, the group name ‘DBSK’ is not registered. SM registered for DBSK trademark in 2004 but was denied. In other words, SM does NOT have the right to the name ‘DBSK.’
According to a ‘Mansung’ Patent Law Firm Office, the patent attorney Hwang Sung Pil said, “Dong Bang means East and one cannot assert exclusive right to use it. Most likely, this was probably the reason why the application was denied 2004. SM cannot assert any trademark rights to the name. If the 5 members are together even away from SM, they will have no problems using the name.”
More than anything, DBSK feels extremely sorry to their fans. This is why they want to go through with performances that were already scheduled. The acquaintance reported, “if they lose the lawsuit, they may have to pay an extreme amount of money for penalty. More than that, they are going through hard times thinking that they will have to be away from their fans while the lawsuit is in process.”
Source: Sports Seoul
Translations: j.adore @ soompi
Park Chang Jong lawyer former member of the National Assembly, who previously dealt with big cases such as ‘Minerva’ and Park Yeon Cha case revealed his stance on the controversial DBSK Case. He is the representative of ‘Honest People’ and in a report stated that, “it is clear the contract DBSK signed with SM is a slave contract. He asserted in the case with SM Entertainment’s battle, DBSK’s company’s acts, according to the criminal law, can be considered as fraud against minors. He criticized the 13 year contract and especially stressed that it is a fraud against minors.
According to criminal law article 384, clause 1, "this type of fraud states that taking advantage of the lack of judgment minors or disabled people can have and thus, profits from is punishable for up to 10 years of penal servitude or for up to 20 million wons of penalty.
Following, SM signed a contract with DBSK who were minors, and thus were not in conditions to make informed judgments, and made immense profit.
He added that this case must be taken as a lesson in order to eradicate the slave contracts employed by many entertainment companies. He especially pointed out the injustice parts in DBSK’s contract.
-By setting the contract condition for 13 years, when the 5 members of DBSK were minors, SM took into consideration of their life as entertainers, and in result, tied them down for life
-Upon cancellation of contract, required for penalty 2 times the amount of future earnings
-Upon signing of the contract, did not confirm the original contract with the party
-Concerning their earnings, required the album sales to exceed 500,000 copies for the parties to receive 10 million wons the next year
Further, he stated, "the criminal acts by SM can be accused not only by DBSK members but a third party and this must be an opportunity to learn lessons eradicate the slave contracts."
Article Credits: Lee Jae Jun (CBS Politics)
Translation Credits: j.adore @ soompi
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