First, let me tell you this so you won't misunderstand me. I loved DBSK with 5 people. Seriously. The past years I have had less time to follow their every single step, but I would still regard them as the best idolgroup in history so far. At the time of the news of the split into JYJ and HoMin I was sad to think the greates group was no more. I did not "keep the faith", becasue I know it is useless. I was fully prepared to accept JYJ and HoMin and wished for them all to continue as artists in one way or the other since they obviously are talented and I honestly believe they like doing what they do.
As the legal battle began I barely read news about it or even followed fans' comments. Why? Not because I don't care about what happens, but because I know there is absolutely nothing I can do about it. It doesn't make a difference if I cry my heart out, on the Internet or outside buildings in Seoul. It doesn't make a difference because it is now a legal matter, and the only people who matter now are the lawyers, the court people and of course JYJ and SME representatives.They all need to settle this dispute, not any angry/sad/hurt fans.
And to all of those who say SME is dragging this issue for an unreasonable long time. IF JYJ had paid the fee for cancelling the contract this whole thing probably would have been over by now. But no, they didn't want to pay. It is a huge sum of money, of course they don't want to. Instead they claim the contract is unfair. The same contract signed (and therefore approved) by them, and also by their parents.
DBSK were young at the time they signed; it is true, but their parents weren't young, that's for sure. Changmin's and Yunho's parents have high education, the others I'm not sure about. Will anyone in their right mind claim that Changmin's and Yunho's parents sent their kids into this so called hellish contract with cold purpose to earn (too little) money? Can anyone in their right mind claim they agreed to such contract just because their little kid wanted to be famous? I'm sorry, I still believe some parents, especially those who have raised the fine men that are Yunho and Changmin, actually do what is right for their kids, and not what their kids wants to do.That is how you get kids that arren't spoilt, and Yunho and Changmin aren't spoilt.
Now, I'm not saying JYJ's parents are stupid, greedy and has spoilt their kids. Read the last paragraph again if you think that's what I said. The bottom line is, the contract was deemed fair at the time they signed it (and I think they have made changes and re-signed it a couple of times, so I guess it was fair those times as well).
I'm also not saying a person can't grow tired of living the life of an idol. It is hard work, and all of those who say idols don't do much more than stand on stage and look pretty can shut up, because they are plain stupid. As JYJ (and everybody else) grows older their bodies won't be as forgiving as ther were when they were younger. It's normal to get pains and aches when working hard for a long time, and in an ideal world everyone should be able to take a few days or weeks to rest when work gets too tiring. But the reality is that most people who do any kind of work don't have that kind of luxury. Especially not if they are employed!
Most formal employments force you to bring your ass to work most days of the week unless you want to see your pay decrease. For many in this world, even a small decrease will put them in a difficult position; not having enough money to pay the rent, buy food and clothes for their kids. So they go to work, everyday, regardless of their health status. Does this mean JYJ must put up with their contracts no matter what? Of course not. But think about it. Most contracts aren't fair for sick and tired people.
But JYJ's situation is different from other, "normal", people, right? They are idols, part of the best group in all of Asia! They should get better terms than other people. It's only fair since they are loved by so many. But how did they become so big? Surely not by cancelling concerts and events just because one of them had trouble with a knee or had some other problems with their health. No. They worked for it. Fought even. Mastered Japanese and God knows all they did just to get better and bigger.
In a culture where idols constantly are afraid of losing fans and getting forgotten because they haven't been on tv for a few weeks, do you really think an idolgroup who will take vacation regularly, and only work 8 hours a day, 5 days a week would make it. Please, be honest with yourself. A single recording of Star King or other variety program can take 12 hours. Learning one dance takes 2-3 days, if you are as good as Yunho.
I don't want to live like an idol does. Heck, I would probably die after one week. That's one of the reasons I'm not an idol in Korea. But I know there are wonderful, smart, people out there who love to sing and dance and be on stage, and that they would do anything to be able to do just that. Just ask the thousands of young girls around the world who have given sexual favours to old men in hopes of getting the chance to debut. Others only need to practice (thank God!), practice, practice, practice... and be good at what they are doing.
Yes, one might think it's horrible for grown men and women to use these ambitious kids to make money, but honestly, that is a whole other can of worms I'm not willing to open rigth now. Let's just say the industry of idols is a fact, and another fact is that we want it to exist, if not, we fans wouldn't be involved in this at all.
The new bottom line is that idols belong to an industry. And by working in any industry there are some rules of conduct everybody follows. One of the most common practices in every industry is making contracts, written contracts, about all that matters. And breaking most contracts will lead to some consequences; most commonly a moneraty compensation, or "punishment" if you like.
Again, JYJ knew they had to pay the price if they wanted to break the contract, so of course they will try to make the court rule in their favour, saying they don't need to pay since the contract as a whole has been invalid on basis on it's unfairness. I'm saying JYJ, but in reality I mean their representatives and advisors. JYJ, as three young men, aren't doing much themselves in all this.
Which brings me to their generous acts of selflessness.
Giving money to charity doesn't mean you are a kindhearted angel. Especielly not so if you are a celebrity. You see, celebrities will donate to charity for goodwill and a boost of their image. This is nothing out of the ordinary. Most companies will do it, but especially big multinational companies, such as Mcdonald's and Coca Cola. Goodwill is something very valuable. McDonald's doesn't sponsor sports and athletics because they love it, they do it to proove they don't promote unhealthy habits despite them selling foods that aren't so good for your body.
And seeing that fans instantly saw the sudden "news" (not really news to hardcore Cassies) that Junsu has been donating secretly for two years proves that it is, indeed, good for your image.
He didn't do it secretly, and the information wasn't leaked by accident to the news agent. Of course not! Nothing is innocent when it comes to the media. There is always something behind it all.
Junsu is also not the first artist to do "secret" charity work. That's what celebrities do. And then they are found out, and people think they are genuine. Most charities accept donations of any size without you having to submit your real name. Because for them the most important thing is to get the money. They don't need to know whose generous pockets it came from. Just saying. Secret for real, and secret for image are two different things.
And there is also some information going around that JYJ donate money from their world tour to charity. Well, they better be. Not just because it helps their image and gives heartbroken Cassies "proof" that they aren't greedy, but because they charge over 100 000 won more for a ticket in Seoul compared to SME. 100 000 times 30 000 tickets. That's 30 000 000 000 won. In the two days in Seoul JYJ earned 60 billion won more than SME had done. Coincidently that's the amount they wanted SME to pay them - the income rightfully theirs through all these years.
So unless the new management is actually robbing JYJ of more money than the so called evil SME, they have already earned (more) than they ever wanted from SME as compensation for their 5+ years of hard work.
The new bottom line here is that JYJ are making huge amounts of money, but they also make it look like they are more generous than others. Like Jesus said (yes, Jesus, in Mark 12 41-43), rich who give much give less than poor who give a little. Or as I would say: it's easier for the rich to give lots of money, but it is the poor who give who are truly generous.
I'm not saying JYJ shouldn't be making money. Of course they should! They probably have fees and expenses to pay, especially with lawyers and the court involved. And that costs money. Many cases gett stalled because one side can't pay to go through with it. Other cases don't get to court at all since most lawyers would advice they clients to settle things outside court where it won't cost as mush. Much like the court in Seoul tried to get SME and JYJ to settle their dispute on their own. It would have been easier, for everyone. And as I heard, SME would have wanted to do that, to avoid such long process. 'Cause if you didn't know, let me tell you. Court cases can go on for ever. Apart from the extreme cases of both the USA and India where there has been recorded cases who went on for over 150 years each, you can read about a modern case that took some 20 years to finish here. Just saying, no one knows when these things end.
I guess it is the individuals of DBSK that fans are concerend about. They don't really care for court decisions and industry standard contracts being broken; all they care about is that the idols are feeling well, are healthy and happy. And that is wonderful! But right now feelings and emotions aren't the key to solving this issue.
I guess what really got me started about all this are the amounts of ignorant Cassies who praise JYJ's every action and hate SME. But most of all, fail to see how Yunho and Changmin have been hurt by all this. JYJ aren't the only ones who have been subjected to pain.
Apparently there has been some "evidence" (I haven't seen or heard any of it firsthand) that Yunho and Changmin were going leave SME together with JYJ, but pulled out just before it was made official. HoMin apparently had said they wanted to remain as 5 no matter what. But when the time for action came, I guess they descided that all the aftermath we are seeing now isn't worth it. Maybe they were scared, maybe they are happy in SME. No one knows why they pulled out, but that doesn't matter much.
So JYJ went ahead with it anyways. They could have refrained from it, tried to talk to HoMin some more, convince them that their future is outside of SME. But they didn't. The supposedly one hour of time that passed between the 5 making plans together and the 3 handing over the files to the court is not enough time to sit down and talk it through. Obviously JYJ were going to make a run for it, together with HoMin or not.
And maybe HoMin knew they were going to be abandoned. Or maybe they thought they could get JYJ to discuss the situation some more before making the jump. Maybe they thought JYJ would come back to SME if the two of them stayed. They might have thought they could work out a better contract if SME thought they were going to lose JYJ. But once again, that's something no one knows anything about. The fact remains, the two who wanted to be 5 were left behind indefinitely. It was their choice obviously, but what to do when you descide to follow your inner convictions rather than what others tell you to do? They thought it was best to stay, JYJ thought it was best to leave. So who made the best decision?
There is no answer to that, because no one knows what's going on inside these five guys. They have been around a while, they know how to express themselves in public without giving away their true feelings. That's what idols do, and that's why fans love them. Disagree? Well then, what would happen if Yunho stood up and said he wants to kick those in the head who say he can't sing? Or if Junsu said he is hurt by getting comments about his butt? Or if Jaejoong said he hates being compared to a girl just based on looks? Or if Changmin said he hates his hyungs for leaving SME? Or if Yoochun said he would much rather act from now on and left JYJ?
The ultimate bottom line is: fans don't know the smallest thing about what idols think and feel. Therefore fans should stop trying to "protect" their idols from stuff they might not need protection from. It's making fans look really stupid in the eyes of everyone, including the idols who can't even say "enough already" or reveal the truth.