The SBS current affairs show ‘I Want to Know’ (‘Gal’) has come under fire for its coverage of the Fifty Fifty exclusive contract dispute involving the agency Attract. However, the program’s handling of the situation has sparked criticism, with concerns of bias and misrepresentation overshadowing the core issue.
A recent episode titled ‘Billboard and Girl Groups – Who Broke Their Wings’ delved into the Fifty Fifty contract dispute. The group had previously filed for a provisional injunction against Attract, leading to a legal battle that has drawn attention. Allegations involving Seong-il Ahn, CEO of The Givers, as an external catalyst for the dispute were raised, but Ahn denies his involvement.
‘Gal’ attempted to present a comprehensive view of the situation by interviewing key figures, including Dougiverse’s director Baek, Attract’s content team leader Jeon, and members’ families. Baek highlighted the complexity of the issue, cautioning against sensationalizing it with provocative language. The dispute’s focal point, payment settlement, revealed contrasting claims from Attract and Fifty Fifty’s lawyer, causing further confusion.
Critics and viewers, however, have voiced concerns about biased reporting in ‘Gal’. Allegations include selective omission of facts, emotional manipulation, and the use of gambling metaphors to characterize K-pop production, potentially leading to misinterpretations.
The controversy escalated with the unexpected mention of BTS and claims of the program prioritizing sensationalism over accurate coverage. Industry insiders like Kim Min-hee from Dush, KBS PD Ko Guk-jin, and former entertainment reporter turned YouTuber Lee Jin-ho joined the chorus of criticism.
The situation raises questions about whether the ‘Gal’ team will address the allegations of biased reporting and how it might impact the program’s credibility moving forward.