A social welfare center in Busan has come under fire for exploiting and “invading the privacy” of BTS‘s Jungkook and his family. As many know, Jungkook hails from Busan although he moved up to Seoul later on to pursue his dreams. While it is unknown where his family resides currently, his grandmother used to stay in a village in Yeonje-gu, Busan.
The issue cropped up when a village map was distributed by the Yeonje-gu Yeonsan Combined Social Welfare Center. The map depicted various public facilities and tourist attractions.
A label on the map caught the eye of many as it seemed to be different from the others. The label was one of the largest in size and placed right near the middle for people to see easily. The label showed the neighborhood where Jungkook’s maternal grandma used to reside.
The house that BTS Jungkook’s grandmother used to live in. (Currently empty)
Although the house is now empty, it was classified on the map as a tourist attraction and facility. The social welfare center claimed that they added the house to “enrich” the tourism in the village and felt it would be okay since no one currently lives there. However, they hadn’t received the agreement from the other citizens in the neighborhood nor sought permission from Jungkook or his family.
When we were creating the map, we did not simply seek to make it informative but also to include fun elements in it. Hence, we ended up including the information concerning the singer. We thought that it would enrich the things to see in the village.
— Social Welfare Center
Naturally, tourists began to flock to the quiet neighborhood, which subsequently disturbed the people who currently live in the area. An elderly resident complained that strangers had been coming to ask about the address of the house. They claimed that including a famous singer’s family home on the map had created trouble for the neighborhood.
After hearing their complaints, ARMYs and netizens criticized the social welfare center for their lack of foresight and consideration for the current residents.
- “Boosting tourism? Such nonsense”
- “??? They’re not sane”
- “Gasp. Privacy!!! Don’t they know what it is?”
- “Ugh leave BTS alone”
- “Huh, did they even get permission? What the”
- “Aren’t they crazy? What are they doing? Aren’t the family members of BTS considered normal people? Why are they publicly distributing private information? Where’re the formalities?”
- “They didn’t even get permission, what are they doing…?”
- “Are they nuts”
- “Aren’t they crazy.. they crossed the line”
Neither HYBE nor Jungkook have yet to speak on the issue. No news about the withdrawal or change of the maps has been reported either. Stay tuned for updates on the matter.