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DBSK Hero, Micky and Xiah’s official stand about their discord with SM


Idol group Dong Bang Shin Ki‘s members Micky YooChun, Hero JaeJoong and Xiah JunSu finally revealed their stand about their problems with SM Entertainment.

Their representative revealed through news media on 3rd August, “The 5 years period after they debuted, the 3 of them felt that their minds and their bodies are tired having to follow the tight schedule that the company put up unilaterally.”

They continued, “Kim JunSu, Kim JaeJoong and Park YooChun have been following SM’s instruments from beginning of 2004 till now, going back and forth promoting in Korea, Japan, China etc, and in a year except for 1 week they get only 3-4 hours of sleep a day to do our schedule.”

Also, “In the process the health of the 3 members are very much deteriorated, they are also suffering from mental fatigue, and as time went SM continue to established on their own decision for Dong Bang Shin Ki to advance into other countries. In the end the 3 members felt that as compared to be fulfilling their dreams to be singers, they are used more as a tool by the compared to earn profits, and they wish to use each of the members to also go into other entertainers’ activities.”

The 3 members’ representative also added, “It is a 13 years contract but in reality it is a lifetime contract. With the exclusive rights clause in the contract, the 13 years also include the time the members are serving their military service, hence it will go for more than 15 years. And now it has not even been near to 10 years since the group’s debut, hence it seems like the contract will last until the members’ retirement from the entertainment zone. The penalty for retracting the exclusive right clause is 3 times the investment cost and 2 times the lost in earnings. They also asked about the penalty of cancelling the whole contract but it will involve several hundred billions KRW of penalty, hence in reality there is no way out but to be tied down to SM because of the contract.”

Also, “The members did not receive the right treatment even from SM. Without getting any contract fees, the initial contract was that if their album sells more than 500K copies, each member will get about 10 million KRW during the next album release. If they sell less than 500K copies of album, they will get nothing.”

The 3 members had went down to Seoul Central District Court to file for a retractile of their exclusive belonging rights with SM Entertainment on 31st July, causing an outrage of speculations about the group’s disbanding and also problems between the members and SM.

Translations of the official press release. My translations was a summary, here’s the actual press release statements

1. 5 years after their debut, the three members are physically and emotionally fatigued from the company’s one-sided orders.
-Kim Junsu, Kim Jaejoong, and Park Yoochun debuted as DBSK members in 2004. Since then, they have followed SM’s orders to go from Korea, Japan, to China. With the exception of 1 week for year, they were only able to get 3-4 hours of sleep and had to go through schedules. During this period, the health of the three members deteriorated and they were mentally fatigued. However, SM pushed DBSK into foreign markets which resulted in excess performance plans. In result, the three members felt that they would not be able to achieve their dreams in SM and would be just tools for the company’s profit. They wished to participate in entertainment activities according to their individual visions.

2.In reality, 13 years of contract meant a contract for life.

-According to the contract, the period of the contract was 13 years, but when including military service, would exceed over 15 years. This meant that there was still 10 years to go with the current contract and in reality, meant until retirement. In the instance that the contract would be breached, the penalty would be to pay 3 times the total investment, 2 times the lost earnings. Even in the case that the contract is canceled when agreed by both parties, the members were required to pay penalty. Therefore, due to the millions of wons required by the contract upon cancellation, contract cancellation was realistically impossible and the members had no choice but to remain in SM

3. The members did not receive adequate treatment from SM for their efforts.

-Despite all this, during the duration of their contract, they did not receive adequate treatment from SM. They did not receive any earnest money from the contract, and according to the initial contract for album profit allotment clause, only when an album sold 500,000 copies, could they get $10,000 per member for the next album, and when albums sold less than 500,000 copies, the members could not receive any earnings. This clause was revised in 2009, February 6th, but even after the revision, earnings that each member would receive for the album sales were 0.4%-1% depending on the album sales.

4. The members requested for corrections to the unreasonable contract, but SM did not listen to the member’s opinions.
-In this situation, the three members pointed out the unreasonable parts in the contract and asked multiple times to be freed from the contract’s boundary and work according to their visions but in response to the current situation, SM discussed issues dealing with their investments in the makeup company, not responding to the true nature of the problem. Despite all this, the three members wanted to find a way to deal with the situation and requested for a conference where both parties could find a solution but SM did not respond. During this process, by the attitudes shown by SM, the three members realized that there was no point in hoping for a settlement and resorted to the court of justice to execute a solution for the problems.

5. The investment in makeup company does not have any relation to entertainment activities and does not have any relation to the applied provisional disposition. The nature of this incident is the contract.

-SM stated that the disposition was submitted due to the investment but the members’ investments in the makeup company do not have anything to do with the provisional disposition. The makeup company SM discussed planned to export to China, and the three members invested as stockholders, having no relation with their entertainment activities. Just by common sense, it does not make sense that the members would give up all their efforts and results as DBSK in order to invest $100,000 to the company. The core of the problems presented by the members is contract injustice, and SM’s attempts to blur the true problems by bring up the investments must stop now.

6. The members do not want DBSK to break up and just hope to free themselves from contract restraints.

-May fans are worried that the disposition would result in DBSK’s break up. However, this disposition was not intended for DBSK to end. Right now, due to differences in how the members wish to overcome problems, only 3 members have participated in the lawsuit. However, there is no problems within the members and they all have the same wishes to keep their promises with their fans to always remain as one. After this incident, if contract injustice is corrected and the members are given conditions to freely perform their music, they feel that everyone can be one and can stand in front of fans as one.

7. We will take this as an opportunity to mature.
-The members realize how much DBSK fans must be surprised and be disappointed about this incident and are distressed and sorry. If the fans could think of this as a jump to bigger dreams and continue to cheer, the members promise to respond to the fans as better musicians.

; translation by j.adore @ soompi

104 Responses

  1. SM sucks…. Poor DBSK ! But they are the best ! Aja Aja Fighting !

  2. That’s messed up, but I’ve seen this time and time again with these “idol groups”. The hunger for fame and desperation felt at signing dissappates after they essentially get all the fame they have wanted, then they actually do the math and realize they aren’t getting paid what they feel they should be.

    Even in the US, Backstreet Boys, Nsync, LFO all sued Lou Perlman over similar “unfair” contracts. I have hope for DBSK to get a bit of compromise on the original contract, but if they signed after the legal age of 18, it will be harder for them to leverage in a court of law. Actually, I have no idea how contract law is regulated in Korea, so I’ll make no assumptions of them winning against SM. But in order to protect their bottom line, money, SM will more than likely modify the contract slightly to hold them off for another few year instead of dragging this to court.

    It’s sad when this kind of thing happens in a group, even when resolved, things will never be the same…not between the members, SM, or other people who look to enter into a contract with DBSK in the future.

    Also, I hope AVEX doesn’t start to think poorly of them as well. I know AVEX sells Japanese cd in Korea via SM Entertainment, so likely they will side with SM if forced to choose.

    Just my speculations, but Good luck to DBSK!
    Moral of the story – “Never sell your soul today because you may need it tomorrow.”

  3. WTF, a 13 year contract? That’s freaking crazyyy
    No money if sales are less than 500k?

  4. Lee Soo Man is retarded
    Lets see if he can make any money
    i bet he cant even make a cent

    Poor Dbsk

  5. […] The 3 members had went down to Seoul Central District Court to file for a retractile of their exclusive belonging rights with SM Entertainment on 31st July, causing an outrage of speculations about the group’s disbanding and also problems between the members and SM. source […]

  6. Who signs a 13yr contract?
    Who signs with a company that has so many problems with their artists?
    If DBSK goes away, I still want my TVXQ and THSK dang it!!!!

  7. I just hope they straighten things before ending it, because it would leave a very very big mess if they didn’t. It is hard when such a constraining contract is signed by you. You would think “why didn’t they read the contract and scrutinize it before signing it?” but then of course they did it for their dreams and wished that it would change as time goes by….

    But I guess it didn’t. And now it’s a mess because it’s a contract issue.

    I’m not a fan of DBSK but I wish a better contract for them. A more reasonable one.

    Or, if all else fails, I hope they don’t disband.

  8. I can understand why Yunho and Changmin don’t join the lawsuit, but the contract is for the five of them right?
    If DBSK does win, then the stupid-slave-contract will end for five of them right? If not, I’m going to cry so much for Changmin n Yunho, trust me, you can’t use a ‘gentle’ approach to pursue SM (gosh I hate them!!)
    I still think that the five of them should do this together, with them divided into three and two it make us, the fans, more worried and give us a wrong impression that they’re going to disbanded.
    I really hope for the best for them, really I do. DBSK Fighting!!

  9. people stop hating ong lee soo man he’s not the head of sme there are other people .
    and this contract is bullshit.
    13 years. no money if íts less then 500k what is nearly impossible.
    3-4 hours sleep . working their asses off.
    and if anyone gives me crap about how theyre getting old /
    and that comment about them being lazy and have a huge ego?! the one who said that is clearly someone who is an anti or just hasn’t seen their schedule .

    ” S.M. Entertainment shares fell 10.06 percent to 3,755 won as of 0141 GMT, while the junior Kosdaq rose 0.82 percent” the reason of the stocks falling is because of the lawsuit dbsk really does have a huge influence

  10. I remember my classmates insisted me to audition in SM ofcourse because of how they grew every artist they release is so professional..but now I’m kinda disappointed because I just realize how Lee Soo Man is such a gold-digger treating their artist like ‘toys’ and not really granting their promise that they will help their artist know their music.

    I’m sorry but the truth, DBSK don’t have that huge power against SM. I agree to others that contract is a contract. It should be filed and signed well considering it is not against the law. Besides, the truth is that, they will never be an artist forever because being an artist does not only rely on making your own music but also on appealing to your audience and fans. DBSK is ONE of the boy groups in Korea that has large fan base. But let’s also face the truth that not all fans are so eager to buy their albums and not be forever their die hard fan.

    In contrast, SM has its own way of grooming their artist, please stop giving comments that JYP or YG is better than SM or whatsoever… The fact is we still love SM’s artists because they are not only really talented..but also the fact that they are under SM.

    Truth hurts. But I hope this truth will not come into these boys. I mean, they can do what Shinhwa did. But look, Shinhwa’s not forever on the top because they are not in SM now. Don’t hate me for saying the truth. That’s every fans’ problem (including myself). We cannot accept every truth relating our favorite artists.

    But I really hope, this issue will now give an end in a good way.

    • You are right, the contract is a contract. But under new law released by Korean Fair Trade Commission, SM violated several clausal in the contract.
      I don’t see them want to tear down their contract, they just simply asked for it to be fixed and made according to the new rule. If SM do this under the table, they wouldn’t have to go to the court.

  11. ok so fans assumption of the profit they make is really small is true and in truth it comes with a terms and condition

    but i guess they cant stand it
    they think for another of their few more years of contract if this keep up it might affect their health
    i guess they have to sought this out well so both sides get what they want

  12. They are getting lazy, that’s what it is. They cannot keep up with the demanding schedule anymore, and they want to stir up shit to stop.

    The contract = ridiculous right from the beginning, there’s no point to bitch about it now. There are 3 simple reasons in this case:

    1. Both side are getting greed.ier as time passes by (both SM and DBSK)
    2. DBSK’s getting lazy.
    3. DBSK’s ego’s getting huge and they think they can make it without SM.

    They are a group made by SM to replace Shinhwa and they have Shinhwa’s case right in front of their eyes, but they didn’t want to learn and still lust after the chance of becomming the next Shinhwa, so they got what they want. Both fame and a slave contract.

    Why bitch now, after you got what you want?

    • they are not getting lazy they are getting old. how many more years can they stand of this?? they were younger when they signed the contract and everything probably happened too quickly for them to think deeply about it.

    • LOL, lazy?

      Try sleeping 3 hours per day, while actively pursuing your career. For 5 years, if not longer. You’re bound to get sick of it one day.

    • how are they lazy have u seen their schedule? you sound pretty ignorant.

    • @hana, eltoshen, dome love: They are GETTING lazy <—- learn how to read and try to find out what 'are getting' mean.

  13. wow i wonder if they rules the same to all the other sm artist!! wow just bc u don’t sell 500k copies u don’t get money?! that’s ridiulous…so that’s how the company eats up alll their money…wow if i were them i would be pretty pissed too…i mean they worked for all that and they get nothing… i hope the fans and everyone realizes how unfair sm is and that they close that company down…their ridiculous……that’s basiccally treating them like tools or a slave!! and if they sleep that little wow i like five more years their gonna get really sick or even get cancer!!i hope it gets figured out so that it will be fair for the boys!

  14. This looks pretty bad, I think it might be hard for them to stay together.

  15. It’s not the money issue that I’m concerned about. DBSK is still getting paid and all, they still get food and they can still afford nice things.

    What I am concerned about is the 3-4 sleep and only 1 week holiday. Is it worth it for all that money? And don’t Korea have some sort of working right law or something?

    I don’t really care if they quit SM. As long as they still continue to work in Japan. I’ve always liked their Japanese songs better. They can actually be vocal groups in Japan, not just some good-looking idol groups. And I think AvexTrax allows Tohoshinki to express themselves more. Almost all of the songs that Tohoshinki made themselves are in their Japanese album.

    This is why although I love kpop, I think jpop have more high quality singers.

  16. yeah SM migh be right legally.. but asking a teenager to sign a 13 years contract is just sneaky.. esp they weren’t coming from a rich family. of course they can’t afford lawyer, and they’re not really educated about contract, etc.. I know a contract usually at least 10 years.. but it’s just so sad, they must be just teenager who believe sm with all of their heart.

  17. oh people please stop make it sound like these guys are dead poor and need to have a new contract to save his family from famine!

    They don’t need to pay for anything, from topnotch housing to airplane transportation to… their toilet tissues. They got fame. They got money from CFs, from concerts… They have spare money to open their own cosmetic line, open their own stores, buy houses…

    A poor singer will be able to do that? NO. Even if i’s a harsh contract, they got world wide fame (all over Asia and some other countries) and more than enough money for their grandchildren to spend. Everything has a price, and wordwide fame is definitely not cheap.

    • SM may be taking care of them financially now, but what happens when they retire as singers? Will they have nothing to show for their successful careers because SM took 70-90% of their profits? I’m no DBSK fan, but their contract with SM is just outrageous. I don’t know how they agreed to it. I hope everything turns out well for them.

    • Just because they’re famous, they don’t deserve their rights? wtf is up with your logic?

      • no eltoshen, Misaz didnt say they dont deserve their rights. they knew what they were getting into when they signed the contract (and if they didnt, then again, thats not the fault of the company).
        yes their rights are important….but what abt the company’s rights? everything was laid out in the contract (unless things were hidden?), and the boys signed it. so how can ppl now say it is completely sm’s fault?

        right now, no one is stopping them from getting out of the contract except the boys themselves – the boys havnt done so because obviously they dont want to pay all that money….
        so dbsk fans who curse at SM need a reality check.

        dbsk want the money, the fame AND the comfort…too bad they signed the contract with SM in the first place.
        either pay their way out or deal with it.
        they arent the victims like all you fans are making it out to be…just naive singers who wanted to debut so badly and wanted to be famous. too bad fame comes with such a heavy price.

        i sound like i dont hv any sympathy for them…i do. it’s just that their fans are saying some ridiculous things.

  18. To haha…not really SM GETS 90-70% of their moeny….including earnigs from endorsments, appearances, and concerts…etc…so no. thay dont earn barely anything from that…

  19. as much as i feel sorry for DBSK, but didnt they know what’s coming before signing the contract? I mean surely they READ the contract before signing…&nd sure a lot is expected from them since they are the biggest stars out there.

    But i hope that SM atleast CHANGES the contract. The boys are gonna grow wrinkles pretty soon!

  20. i know something wrong from all the schedules that they have to go through…

    SM is BETTER DO something right bout it!!!
    if u wanna Know DBSK IS soooo Much bigger than SM right know…

    i believe that fans always gonna support them,Netizen not just gonna sat still watch Korean Talented Boyband falling apart b’coz their own Company!!!

    This is slavery for sure!!
    SM should just sued by Cassies all over the world!!

    I Hope they win the Law suit!!
    ah i’m waiting for this news like crazy…><

    • You’re dumb. DBSK is just a pop band, nothing more.

      SM >>> DBSK, that’s a HARD fact.

      It takes time but they can always produce another new wave for KPop to replace DBSK. Just like SM produce DBSK after let go of Shinhwa.

      • DBSK has the largest fanbase in the world. those fans are gonna support their boys no matter what so in a way, SM < DBSK because if you take away DBSK from SM, SM loses those millions upon millions of fans.

        DBSK may just be a "pop band" but their damn popular not just in korea, but in the whole of asia.

        so SM will try very hard not to let go of them

      • No ONE care if they have the largest fanbase or whatever.

        If the fans are so great, why don’t each of you extract 5 dollars a month to give to the boys? That’s much better than buying those shitty $60 photobooks right?
        5X800k = 4 mil/month.
        5 dollars is to much and your parent don’t have that kind of money to give you? well how about $1? that’s 800k/month ~ 10mil/year.

        Fans are useless. They did nothing more than sitting in front of their computer and bitch, just like you. Or doing some dumb acts like “only 13” campaign.

        And no, please don’t exagerate, their fanbase (including clones accounts) did not exceed 1mil, let alone ‘millions upon millions of fans’

        SM don’t care. You think Shinhwa is only popular in a province of Korea? NO. No one care. SM doesn’t give a fuck.

        And Cassies sue SM? For what? SM did nothing wrong to Cassies. If Cassies sue SM, they will sue back for “wasting their time and money”. Stop being dumb and think fans can do anything. Get a brain and go study.

      • And i’m talking to both indira22 and luvBB4lyf

      • Jasmine, you’re an idiot if you think DBSK’s fans exist only in Cassieopia.

      • the fact is, as the time I was typing SM stocks were drop down to 10% due to this issue.
        The reason why people want to invest money in SM: DBSK carrier in Japan. Get real, korean entertainment is just a small pieces, but DBSK in Japan really promising. BTW, DBSK = success. Even after 2 year of hiatus they can do a big comeback. None of the artist ever done this before.

        SM is bigger than DBSK. But the investor are way bigger than SM, and that investor trust their money on DBSK name

  21. This ain’t new from SM. We’ve all heard it since the 90’s on how they treat artists and the tight leash of their contracts.
    But, people still go there, and sign the contracts.

    No matter how bad you want something, don’t sell yourself to get it.
    This is only the beginning of the hell SM does to human beings.

    Does ANYONE remember ShinHwa??

    • Especially since a contract term can’t legally exceed 7-years. So the contract in itself is really illegal and should be voided at SM/s lose.

      • lol but back then it did not have this 7 years limit. And even if it’s 7 years, they still have 2 years left.

        And once they sue SM, guess what? they are going down for the last 2 years of their entertainment career.

  22. SM artist = Slave Management Artist.
    Poor them, not only DBSK but also the other artist i can see that Super Junior and SNSD are tired too

  23. Okay, I’m warning you now, an essay is ahead:
    I’m wondering why they agreed to sign contracts they weren’t happy with?

    Theory: DBSK re-signed their contracts in the midst of a promotional period, and most likely felt that it was better to keep harmony than to cause a possible seperation of the group while heavily promoting in 2 countries. I doubt that this problem is new, it was ongoing. The three members have seperate contracts and all have most likely had problems with them from the beginning. They tried to negotiate quietly and they obviously weren’t taken seriously, why, because SM already had their signitures, so in a way, they were trapped. Lawsuit and public announcement=last ditch effort to be heard. 13 years is a ridiculously long period of time for a company to have the rights to your name, especially in the k-pop world, where military service for men is mandatory and careers are essentially killed when you’re “too old” to be in a boy band, or seen as “hot” by young girls (which is ridiculous, small minded people) They realize that they aren’t going to be at the top forever and want the rights to their names so that investments and more stable career paths can be established now, and not when they are no longer of value.
    Why did they re-sign, it was in their best interests at the time to do so. They’ve sold over 500K in Korea alone, their names are pretty big NOW, thus, now is the time to take a stance. They have the clout to do so.

    I feel as though these three want more control over their names, what they do, where they go, and what kind of music they put out. Like someone else said, I don’t think they want to be idols, but artists, who have a say in what they produce. I think they felt that their contracts would evolve and grow as they have, but in actuality, have not. They seem overworked, underpaid, and uncontent about future developments.

    Theory as to why the other two aren’t involved:
    Yunho isn’t part of this lawsuit because he’s being heavily promoted right now as a solo actor, which is something he seems eager to do. he’s got an endorsement deal with whatever that company is(enviso?), and is currently managed by SM. Why would he mess with this opportunity and push into the limelight as a solo comodity? Chagmin is tied up in a drama with SM. They both have investments and further obligations that the others don’t.

    I don’t know what’s going on internally, but I get the sense that they all want different things from their future careers. The only thing I am sure of, is that they seem to want to stay a group and continue to put out albums together. I don’t think that there is animosity between them, it seems more so, that each accepts and supports the others position.

    Yesh, I wrote a book. But, I’ve been dying to say what I think. P.S. I highly doubt they didn’t read their contracts, it’s more likely they thought that SM would budge a little after they reached their set goal of 500K i.e re-negotiations.

  24. I’m kinda split on this issue………. I love the boys and all, but SM is also right, legally.

    I hope the boys get what they want and continue to do what they love, sing and perform.
    I wish it was all the five boys together ‘against’ SM.

    SM is harsh, BUT to be fair, they should’ve read the contract and complain at that point. A contract is a contract. Business is business and you don’t mess with someone’s money.
    Money is the most evil thing in this world. As long as there is money involved, there will never be peace.

    I feel that if they do settle this, SM will have hidden hatred towards Jaejoong, Junsu, and Yoochun. And probably favor Yunho and Changmin in front of them. I also think that the three boys will do ‘bad’ in front on SM on purpose, to piss him off. This might give DBSK, even SM a bad image.

    This news is plastered all over blogs, korean news sites, and my ONE Korean channel!

  25. Thats probably lower than McDonalds worker wage… O_O

    • DBSK gets more money then a middle class American. Seriously. This isn’t a money issue.

  26. never like SM since i knew the past…..

    personally i think tvxq will disband in korea but not japan.
    in japan, they belongs to AVEX , not SM….
    I know SM will treat them as a tool to earn money, LSM is doing business and of course idol groups under SM is his ‘products’

    If tvxq is disband, i wonder what will happen next for Suju
    LSM also using hankyung to enter china markets to earn money….

    What LSM did when he debut idol groups, he already plan for the future, the long-term…as well as a contingency plan…all this is business….

  27. now i see where the boys are coming from with their lawsuit.
    imagine yourself working countless hours, sleeping for a few hours and still have no say in your schedule of activities. the company tells you what to do, what to say, what to act in front of people. imagine yourself doing this for the next 10 years or so. i’m not much of a dbsk fan but issue is really something to be talked about.

    how about SM’s other groups like SJ and SNSD. more members, less salaries for each one of them. if dbsk members are complaining how about the others.

    SJ started the year with their 3rd album promotions, july they had their concert. and this august is SM town. no rest period for the guys. that’s just SJ’s sched, how about dbsk who have been constantly juggling korea and japan activities. even shinee whose some members aren’t adults. they look really tired nowadays.

    how come SM did not learn anything from the issue with regards to HOT.

  28. I wonder is it only the three members’ contracts, which said to be owned exclusively for 13 years? Coz i believe the other 2 will join if they’re under the same contract.
    I also worry about SNSD n SJ. Come to think of it….SJ have never stopped promoting. When the album promotion is done, they had to go doing sub-groups n other activities. That’s probably bcos of splitting the profit into 13??? Maybe this is also the reason why Kibum is missing?
    N lately, SNSD are treated like the new money machine…. So messed up!
    No wonder some SMers joined that MILK club….T.T

    I hope DBSK can settle this n make some necessary change in the contracts.

  29. Seeing this is out now, SM will definitely have to change their contract. I’m glad the DongBang boys spoke up. At least the rest of their hoobaes won’t have to suffer that much.

  30. intense and still left us hanging but finally things are coming into perspective

  31. a contract is a contract….if you’re old enough to sign with a company then you should be responsible enough to get your contract read by your family lawyer BEFORE you sign it……thats the deal…as much as it “sucks” to be signed to this contract…..they signed with consent and that’s whats going to be their downfall throughout this whole case….

    when you sign something it becomes the law, its a sealed promise that you are going to follow the rules else pay the consequences – DBSK will have to pay should they decide to opt out of the deal and its going to cost A LOT…which is why SM doesn’t give them much in the first place, even if they wanted to buy out the rest of the contract they probably don’t have the funds to do so. Not to mention, the legal repercussions of this all is going to be enormous.

    the best thing would be for them to settle on some changes to the contract and that’s going to happen because SM is going to succumb to fan pressure…

    • Yes, a contract is a contract. But 14-16 year olds may understand the words but not the implications of a contract. If I’m not wrong, the whole “slave-contract” thing was banned recently in Korea right? To prevent entertainment companies from signing trainees to contracts for more than 7 years or something because seriously, it doesn’t seem ethical to make them sign their careers away right from the beginning.

      • 1) at the age or 14 or 16 you can’t legally sign a contract anyway…i’m sure none of the members signed until they were 18, which brings me to the point again ….. their family members or lawyers should have checked the contract

        2) the term “slave contract” was given by fans, there isn’t actually a real contract called “slave contract” – lol

        3) the hunger for fame does a lot of things to you…if you’re young, an aspiring singer and SM gives you this contract that tells you he’s going to give you fame, name and recognition, you can sing all over the world and make your dreams come true then of course you’re going to want to sign it…..and you’re going to sign out of consent …

        all in all, each member was at a legal age where they could sign on their own and they did so….as far as I’m concerned they were fully aware of the 13 year long contract right from the beginning, no where is DBSK coming out and saying SM tricked them or anything……

      • 1) I think they knew and they committed to it. In fact, I’m really really curious as to why they didn’t try harder to get their personal contracts changed when the group contract was up for renewal in 2007/2008. But really, when DBSK debuted, Xiah was 16, Micky & Hero were 17. From what I know of JaeChun’s family situations, I don’t think they were in any situation, financially-speaking, to hire a lawyer. Those two were pretty much alone in Seoul and away from their families. And Xiah was desperate to debut from what I gather. He probably would have convinced the parents to sign anything :/

        2) Yeps there’s no actual legal “term” for it but my point was that Korean legislation has been changed recently making it illegal for contracts to run for more than 7 years, yes? I’m fuzzy on the details, but even if the change in legislation doesn’t legally affect contracts signed BEFORE the change was implemented, it does affect the case.

        3) I’m not saying they didn’t sign out of consent. And of course, I question what the heck their parents were thinking, but I’m saying that it seems awfully unethical to get trainees to sign a contract that runs for 13 … or more accurately, 15 years and not allow any changes to be made as they get older (though this was probably the norm in Kpop D:). From what I understand so far, they don’t seem to be able to get out of the contract without having to pay SMent. an enormous amount of money.

  32. A 13 year contract is already very ridiculous. What’s more, if dbsk sell less than 500K copies of album, they will get nothing as in no money?

    Super ridiculous!

    What is SM thinking?

    DBSK is not their slaves.

    Support DBSK forever~

  33. BOO YOU LSM! what a money-hungry ape. DBSK should leave SME! they’re better off without them anyway!

  34. WOAH~…that’s harsh!…
    Sm is really something..
    500K is impossible these days with the online world…I mean, look at us international fans…Thanks to SK unnie for the news, otherwise, we wouldn’t be here…

    Although I’m not such a big fan of DBSK, but I still adore them. I hope all of the members come together and fight what’s right for them.

  35. “if their album sells more than 500K copies, each member will get about 10 million KRW during the next album release. If they sell less than 500K copies of album, they will get nothing”

    WHAT THE SHITT??! Thats crazy dude. 10 million KRW is like, NOTHING…isn’t it only around like 8000 USD? And they only get 3-4 hrs of sleep each day? THATS FUCKING CRAZY. LSM should go rot in hell. Even tho Im not a dbsk fan, this is heart breaking man. dbsk deserves much better than that :/

    • Even they don’t get money from album sales… they still a lot from endorcements, appearances, concerts, etc… that’s still a lot.

      • its not a matter of whether there’s alot or little money..its a matter of justice..its just extremely unfair that the boys put in so much effort and hard work yet all that they put in arent appreciated and rewarded. Even thought they still get money from elsewhere they should also get rewarded for their effort that they put into making the album..other than monetary rewards they should also be given a well-deserved break..i would have to say that SM is just treating them as his money tree and i hope he gets his retribution!

  36. You guys should mention “Without getting any contract fees” that mean they already had a salary , so the condition “the initial contract was that if their album sells more than 500K copies, each member will get about 10 million KRW during the next album release” just like encourage them
    They’d had a fame now they want to money

  37. SME never learned. I’m a proud JYPE camper now. (Please, don’t start on JYPE being a harsh/slave-driven company etc because at least I can see the boys/girls seem like they’re enjoying themselves and having fun, and they do have lives outside of the industry. -_-)

    I thought the fans were exaggerating it a bit when I read about similar things during H.O.T days, but I guess this confirmed the BS do exist.

    I love the talented boys, however, so I do hope they will be able to pull this through this mess, all five of them, together.

    Thanks for being very reliable, K Bites! Like some mentioned, I don’t care what other sites said, I only read from you. ❤

    • JYP just negletes his artists for more popular artists. *JOO, Lim Jeong Hee, GSoul, 2AM*

      • Really, don’t embarass yourself if you don’t know what you are talking about. Do some research before believing everything gossip blogs feed you. Clearly you know nothing about JYPE artists and how their time is being spent.

      • Fine… just tell me what JOO been doing since her debut?

      • Well if you insist. Since she ended her activities last year, Joo has featured in Taw’s song “Our Happy days”

        A guest in JYP tour (which lasted a month)

        Sang two OSTs ( “three dads, one mom” ) the most recent being from the drama ” Painter of the wind”

        Hosting her own music show on Mnet until very recently.

        Appeared in 2AM’s last music video.

        Multiple variety shows appearances.

        Granted, we haven’t seen her in 2 months, does not mean she isn’t doing anything..maybe she is preparing her next album? ….

        A little research goes a long way and JYP making a twitter for her along with all his other artists, makes me think she is still on his mind and far from being “neglected”

      • and how is that a problem?

        That’s just the way the industry works. the popular artists gets heavily promoted over the lesser ones. At the end of the day, it’s who rakes in more money.

        Anyway, you can say SM is doing the same then, what’s been happening with the past year or so CSJH and zhang li yin? That’s right – not much.

  38. :O wait seriously? Okay now I have respect for them for how long they’ve held out. 500k to get 10 million KRW and NOTHING if they don’t? That’s inhuman.

    “In the end the 3 members felt that as compared to be fulfilling their dreams to be singers, they are used more as a tool by the compared to earn profits, and they wish to use each of the members to also go into other entertainers’ activities.”

    After reading this, I sort of understand why it’s only JaeChunSu fighting for the case. It reminds me of an old interview where Jae said he doesn’t like to go on variety shows etc. etc. because all he wants to do is be a singer, not an entertainer. Makes me wonder if he really wanted to take on the acting job in Heaven’s Postman or if he was pressured into it D:. And Junsu’s stated before that he wants them to be more than idols, to be looked at as singers instead of as idols … so it just makes sense.

    And there’s also the fact that JaeChunSu are the ones who compose the most in the group … and judging from the album payment details, they probably don’t get paid for the songs they create 😡 it must be horrible to know that even if they leave SMent, the company will always have the rights to their compositions because it was published under the “DBSK” banner.

  39. Damn…. I feel so bad for DBSK. That contract is suffocating.

    “If they sell less than 500K copies of album, they will get nothing.”
    ^ That is freaking insane.

  40. Poor SME’s artist ;(

  41. gosh, SM.
    ”If they sell less than 500K copies of album, they will get nothing.”
    That to is just WTF?!

    && @ Riin, I have a lot of respect for fans like you 😀

  42. LSM deserves pain

  43. Woah! So SM still hasn’t learned the lesson.
    I find it really amusing how all generations who have supported artists from SM have ended up bashing on the company because of its bad treatment towards its own artists.

    I really feel sad for Cassiopeia and for these guys themselves. I’m not a fan of them, but I acknowledge their talent and I feel pity for them. I wonder though why the other two members didn’t join. I just hope they can solve this soon because them leaving SM would be a huge mess.

    Good luck to them and I wish the best to everyone.

    From a YG Fam. fan.

  44. I doubt they will disband. It’s either they will stay in SM or leave SM a a group.

  45. I make more money than they do with their album sales. That’s ridiculous for the amount of work they do >_>

  46. the eff?!?

    500k or nothing?
    god man, if this is what dbsk gets, i wonder how much snsd and suju’s profits are then.

  47. awww i feel sorry for them. TVXQ Fighting!!!!!

  48. the fact that they’ll disband or not still unclear.
    They said They don’t WANT to disband.
    Is no mean They will NOT disband.


  49. As if I don’t have more than enough reason to hate that Lee Soo Man
    such an ass.

  50. i hope that they will get through this as TVXQ..
    all 5 of them..

    thanks so much for this..

  51. O___O. that is a crazy contract.
    10 million KRW?! and that’s only if they sell over 500K? that’s only about $8,160USD! THE HECK?!
    they deserve so much better than that!

  52. Seems like the won’t be disbanded…
    But It still worrying me,,,
    about the lawsuit and how the problem get solve,,,
    in the other side
    I can feel how tired they are
    hoping for the best for them

    Please don’t be disband

  53. They are getting old… disband already… 500k at the time they sign the contract is not really THAT big of a deal.. but of course, time change so they suffer.

    • And this is why groups disband after 5 years…Because people think they’re getting ‘old’. SMAP = a Japanese boy group have been singing for 13+ years and people still respect them. No one calls them old.

      • Yeah they are getting old. YC look like an ajuhma now..

        And talking about getting old, you don’t have to wait for 5 years, Suju is also getting too old for their genre…

      • SMAP are different, though. They’re not “idols” like DBSK, they’ve been able to gain respect as artists in Japan.

        I’m sorry but DBSK, as “respected” as they are, do not seem like artists to me. They still are an idol group, and we all know idol groups don’t last long unless they find a way to become artists. SM is refusing to let DBSK become artists, so it seems to me like their time is up.

    • actually the NUMBER 1 selling album in 2004 (when DBSK debuted) is Seotaiji with 482,066 which is LESS THAN 500k. So 500k is a big deal. I mean Seotaiji is a legend. #2 best selling of 2004 is Lee Soo Young’s mini album with 380,860. That there’s a 100k DIFFERENCE between 1 and 2, shows how amazing he is to sell even that much. It’s not like Korean artist were selling 1 million+ albums left and right.

  54. thanks sookyeong for the translations,you’re the only kpop blog I trust(:

    wow this sucks for DBSK big time,they didn’t even get to choose if they wanted to expand to other countries?I never liked SM and this just made me hate that company even more.

  55. this is why people dislike sm so much, you would expect him to learn after the whole HOT ,Shinhwa, SES fiascos
    but instead he makes them worse
    even though im not completely fond of the SM artists, i’m wondering why Changmin and Yunho arent there complaining too. WTF 500k sales, thats impossible for most artists now, yea they are DBSK but thats stressful knowing that each album you make has to be amazingly awesome or you wont get paid at all. imo i think they whole group should come together and talk about the situation and maybe the contract will be terminated. then they can go to another company or even create their own and produce music, like Shinhwa.

  56. Knew it was a “slave contract”…gosh, do you guys remember how Jaejoong don’t even have time to sleep at the end of last year because of the MIROTIC activities and filming his drama?

  57. wow, after reading this, im kinda scared about SNSD and SUJU as well. omg SM is fuckin bad!

    “If they sell less than 500K copies of album, they will get nothing.”

    WTFFFFF!!!!!! poor SM artists

  58. “If they sell less than 500K copies of album, they will get nothing.”
    WTF?! this is ridiculous!

  59. thanks 4 the trans! hope they will be completely back soon! I actually think SM doesn’t realize what he has ^^ not only them, but a lot of SM artists suffered a lot! hope SM realizes what he can lose and thay find a way that can be good for both

  60. hmm…interesting

  61. wow that is some hard core contract.
    sucks cuz it sounds like they won’t really get out of it, but they are prolly hoping that media like this will make sm realize that they are a$$holes

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