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  上个月,韩国流行乐团 Bigbang 前成员胜利被曝出丑闻,这一事件也引发了韩国娱乐圈的地震。一些粉丝至今难以相信自己喜欢多年的明星的真实面目竟然是这样的。《经济学人》对这一事件也进行了关注。

  Sex, drugs and spy-cams


  Exposing K-pop’s dirty secrets


  South Korea’s music industry is racked by misogyny and abuse


  All that’s left of the “Burning Sun” nightclub in Seoul are the faint outlines of the letters that used to spell its name, which have been hastily removed from above the former entrance. The club was run by Lee Seung-hyun, better known as Seungri, a member of Bigbang, a K-pop group.

  位于首尔的"烈日”夜总会原先入口上方的招牌已经被匆匆拆除了,只剩下依稀可辨的模糊轮廓了。该夜总会是由韩国流行乐团 Bigbang 的成员李昇炫(其艺名“胜利”更为人所知)经营的。

  It was closed last month after police began investigating Seungri and his business associates for offences involving drugs, tax evasion and the provision of sexual services to potential investors (prostitution is illegal in South Korea). Though Seungri denies the allegations, he nevertheless made a grovelling public apology.


  Some called Mr Lee “Seungsby” (after the Great Gatsby, a high-living fictional anti-hero); the analogy has become even more apt since things all started to unravel spectacularly for Mr Lee. His music label has terminated his contract.


  K-pop offers fans a polished and sanitised version of sex and glamour. Recording contracts often ban stars from having girlfriends or boyfriends to ensure that fans can project their desires onto them unimpeded. This makes the revelations that have emerged about the industry since Mr Lee’s downfall all the more damaging.


  The part of the scandal that has sparked the most outrage is the revelation that male K-pop stars and their associates apparently used group chats to exchange pornographic videos of women who had been filmed without their consent, along with lewd banter. Jung Joon-young, a singer, songwriter and former television host, has been arrested on charges of filming and distributing illegal spy-cam footage.


  In a video a friend shared with him, a woman appears unconscious. In extracts of web chats published by a Korean broadcaster, the men joke about drugging and raping women. They also seem to implicate the police in their schemes, alluding to a senior officer who “has our back”.


  Spy-cams are common in South Korea, where pornography is banned and internet porn is harder to access than elsewhere.


  Protests against them form the basis of an energetic women’s movement that began last year and has garnered fresh attention after two men were arrested for installing illegal spy-cams in motel rooms across the country, filming some 1,600 guests without their knowledge.


  For feminists, the latest K-pop scandal is yet another sign of pervasive misogyny. Jin Sun-mee, the minister for gender equality and family, called on men last week to “please stop” objectifying women, adding that: “Women are humans with souls.”


  Fans are disappointed and angered by the revelation that their favourite stars may be truly awful people. “I hate myself for liking him so much,” one woman says of Seungri.


  YG Entertainment, his former label, has seen its valuation plunge since the scandal broke. Whatever else the investigation reveals, it has already shown that, in the K-pop business at least, not all publicity is good publicity.

  自丑闻曝出以来,胜利的前东家YG娱乐公司的市场估值大幅下跌。无论调查还将挖出什么,它至少已经表明,在韩国流行音乐圈,并非所有的宣传都是好宣传。(小编注:all publicity is good publicity.是一句英文俗语,其英文解释是:said to emphasize that it is better that something receives badpublicity than no publicity at all.即:某事就算受到负面宣传也比没有宣传要好。很显然,胜利丑闻事件告诉我们,如果宣传负面到一定程度,可能很难再挽救了。)


  hastily  adv. 匆忙地;急速地;慌忙地

  prostitution  n. 卖淫;滥用;出卖灵魂

  sanitise  vt. 采取卫生措施使其安全;给…消毒

  unimpeded  adj. 畅通无阻的;未受阻的

  pornographic  adj. 色情的;色情作品的;春宫画的





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