South Korea’s National Assembly forwards a new bill in honor of the late K-pop artist and feminist, f(x)’s Sulli. The 25-year-old artist passed away in her home this Monday. According to her close confidants, she dealt with severe depression before her untimely death. She’s also been a regular target of hateful comments and trolling online.
This pushed the National Assembly to create The Sulli Law, a new bill named after the late K-pop star, that aims to protect victims of cyberbullying.
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The proposed bill aims to enforce strict rules against malicious comments online. Their subcommittee plans to review details and clauses within the ‘Sulli Law’ within early December, on the 49th day after the late artist’s passing. One hundred organizations plan to back up the bill, including the Global Culture & Art Solidarity, Federation of Korean Trade Unions, Korean Government Employees’ Union, and celebrities who are victims of cyberbullying as well.
It’s great that South Korea is taking action against the effects of online bullying. Although, it would’ve been better if people in power took action earlier. It leaves us to think why someone famous in the K-pop industry needed to die before we took cyberbullying seriously. So what if you’re not famous in Korea? Does that mean we don’t deserve to be protected from virtual hate?
Regardless, we suppose it’s better late than never. But let’s be reminded that f(x)’s Sulli wasn’t the first K-pop artist to receive unwarranted backlash. SHINee’s late singer Jonghyun, Blackpink’s Jennie, Typhoon’s Solbi, and Red Velvet’s Yeri are just some of the K-pop stars who tend to be subjects of online hate.
“I was too young and socially immature to digest all the glamour and changes in the environment, and there’s no self-medication whatsoever,” Typhoon’s Solbi said in an interview. She received intense backlash in 2009 after being wrongfully identified in a leaked sex video. The fake scandal became viral and the incident gave her intense trauma.
“Then how do you respond to all of those vicious online comments? If you explain, they’ll dismiss it as an excuse, and if you fight, they’ll dislike you even more.”
Trolling and hate come with the price of fame. Famous artists know it, and so do comment lurkers. The internet can be a cruel place where we hate for the sake of five minutes of viral fame or for the sake of feeling self-righteous. We seem to forget that the people we stan or hate on are people too. Like we said back then, think before you post. Trust us, it’s not worth the clout-chasing.
Still from Sulli’s Goblin MV