Korea is the capital of plastic surgery, K-pop and the infamous song, “Gangnam Style”. Many people may not know about Korea’s crazy obsession with wealth and privilege, one of the many visuals seen in Crazy Rich Asians. Korean influencer, Song Ji-a, is one of the many pulled into this obsession. Crazily, she obtained this ridiculously rich status on a counterfeit budget.
Korean influencer Song Ji-a was one of her country’s biggest stars due to her appearance on Netflix’s dating show, Single’s Inferno. Ji-a’s popularity exploded after Single’s Inferno; she raked in a larger following due to her charisma and designer wardrobe. Song Ji-a’s stardom caused her YouTube platform to rake in almost two million subscribers and three million followers on Instagram!
However, Ji-a’s stardom fell through quickly as fans discovered the designer items she was showcasing on her platforms were fake! It is not uncommon for influencers to exaggerate their lives on social media for some clout, but her fans are angrier than most. Ji-a’s platform centered around wealth and privilege. When fans discovered this was all a hoax, they were furious. It did not take long for her fans to flood all of her accounts with hateful comments for being “fake” and a “poser.”
A few days later, Ji-a released an apology video on her YouTube channel. In her apology, she explained that she loved showcasing her love of fashion on social media. Since her rise to stardom, she felt pressure to keep up the image she portrayed in the show: a Serena van der Woodsen ‘it’ girl. Ji-a loved the attention she was getting and gave in to this greed of wanting more fan praise.
None of her fans seemed to forgive her even though she tried to blame social media’s pressure on her. Instead of forgiving, fans began another uproar because of a different scandal involving pro-Chinese sentiment. A video on one of her Chinese social media outlets saw her refer to Kimchi (South Korea’s National dish) as ‘Pao Cai’ (a Chinese term for pickled vegetables). Not only was she called a “poser,” but her disappointed fans also started to call her “unpatriotic” and urged her to “leave Korea and live in China instead.” With two ongoing scandals, Ji-a is trapped in a whirlpool of ‘cancel’ culture.
Since the Kimchi scandal, Ji-a deleted all posts from her social media accounts besides her apology video on YouTube and her handwritten apology letters on all her other social media accounts. Song Ji-a has not been heard from ever since her public apology.
It is predicted that the Korean audience will not support Ji-a as much as they did previously. Outlooks like BuzzFeed News and Daily Mail say that many viewers do not want to see her on TV right now, which resulted in her being edited out of another TV show. Ji-a was supposed to appear in a Jan. 23 episode of Knowing Bros, another Korean TV show, but the producers could not edit her out. It was too late to remove her from the show since it would also edit out the other guests.
Not only did Ji-a release her apology statement on Monday, but her agency has also issued an apology. Now her Korean audience awaits her next moves in bouncing back.