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15 June 2010

Stars marketing love scandals, how much is too much?

To keep it hidden was once virtue but the stars today are appearing all over TV variety programs as the hot topic with their love scandals, quickly becoming a type of star marketing. Despite the interest, many are watching on with glances warning the stars that such noise marketing is actually being taken a bit too far.

MBC's variety program 'Come to Play' featured real life couple Hwang Jungeum and Kim Yongjun along with WGM's virtual couple Jo Kwon and GaIn on an episode aired on the 7th. The Hwang-Kim couple revealed their feelings on their break up rumors while the Jo-Ga couple confessed their inner feelings.

SBS's variety program 'Family Outing 2' members 2PM Taecyeon and SNSD Yoona are another couple swept in love scandals. Despite the fact that they are members of sensitive idol groups, they give emphasis to their love line on the program.

Why are the stars suddenly using their love scandals as a way to market themselves when in the past, they were afraid to even talk about it in fear of losing their careers? First of all, the production of variety programs have changed. Every word that a star states on TV shows becomes a news article immediately and even has the power to top search ranks the next day. The celebrity in question is then able to lead the industry as the hot topic.

Because of such reasons, an 'explosive' love scandal becomes the focus and stars that are making their come back are now even pulling out stories from their past in order to market themselves through love scandals.

The way the public views the love scandals of the stars have also changed. When their personal lives were regarded as top secret, stars were able to draw in enough attention but it has recently changed in that stars that reveal their relationships or marriage plans outright earn more attention and popularity. Mere love scandals fail to attract the same interest like before.

Companies themselves are also not using any measures to block the scandals either. An anonymous agency president stated on the 14th, "Because of the recent developments with the internet and smart phones, it's hard to keep dating lives a secret. It's worse to deny it and have it revealed later. Stars these days actually pretend to be dating when they have broken up in order to keep their image from falling."

But such excessive love scandal marketing only brings about more criticisms. People are worried that the personal lives of people are being used as a form of marketing.

Lee Dongyeon, professor and culture critic at the Korea National University of Arts, stated, "Calculated love scandal explosions are just another style of noise marketing in order to gain more exposure with the media. The problem is that there is no authenticity to anything and that the private lives of celebrities are publicized along with other stimulating content to the point where it's just running rampant now."

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