When it comes to the world of K-Pop, one of the biggest issues surrounding the industry has been the topic of age. HYBE‘s sublabel, ADOR, announced the debut of their newest girl group, NewJeans. Yet, with the members so young and many still considered minors, it’s raised concerns about the safety and well-being of idols.
At first, many praised the group, adding that the concept of the video seemed age appropriate.
Yet, recently, concerns have been raised about the group and particularly the topic of their young age. Many netizens have shared their anger after realizing that ADOR’s CEO Min Hee Jin has a past history of debuting minors with more “sexualized concepts,” including SHINee‘s Taemin.
While many assumed that, from the music video from NewJeans, the concept was fresh and age-appropriate, one netizen raised some concerns about the outfits worn by the members in the video and also in photos posted.
In the music video, one of the members at the center of the clip is wearing a red top and white pants. Although many pointed out that it seemed fine at first and something that many teenagers wear…
On closer look, the pants showcase an image of a girl in a bikini carrying a surfboard. Although it might not seem like anything major, netizens pointed out that it was far from the age-appropriate image the group is trying to showcase.
Similarly, in a photo posted by the group on their new platform, Minji was wearing a shirt that had inappropriate text on it. The shirt itself seemed like a normal fit for someone her age.
Yet, netizens noticed that the words actually said, “PIMP IS YOURS.” The word “Pimp” has always had negative connotations and the meaning is, “A man who controls prostitutes and arranges clients for them, taking a percentage of their earnings in return.”
For many, it was not suitable for someone so young and in an idol group to be wearing something like with such wording.
When the images were shared, netizens had mixed reactions. While some thought the analysis of the outfits was part of the problem that could lead to “Sexualization,” others shared it was drawing attention to the issue at hand.
Also, although the members wearing the outfits were 18 years old, the group still contained minors, and some of its audience would also be underage.
Others also pointed out that some of the outfits worn by the members on Instagram might be deemed inappropriate for their age, especially when they will be role models for those of a similar age. For many, they were considered too mature.
Although CEO Min Hee Jin has been praised for her caring attitude towards the members, and while many hoped it would tackle the issue of debuting minors, the clothes worn seem to show that it is still a topic that needs to be discussed.
You can read more about netizens’ concerns about the group below.