Netizens crack down on plagiarism scandals plaguing K-pop world

Netizens crack down on plagiarism scandals plaguing K-pop world
A scene captured from MBC entertainment program “Infinite Challenge” shows hip-hop artist Primary (left) and comedian Park Myung-soo.

The recent charges of plagiarism involving local hip-hop artist Primary has brought the Korean music industry's notorious past and ongoing allegations of plagiarism to the fore.

Many are now questioning how these accusations will impact the future of the industry.

Thanks to the infinite capabilities of the Internet, netizens have been exposing supposed plagiarism.

"As bad as an accusation of plagiarism can be, the resolution of plagiarism in Korea might actually be far worse," said one industry insider. "A false claim can seriously damage a person's career while a true claim can be very difficult to collect any sort of financial damages for."

The single "I Got C" was produced by Primary along with comedian Park Myung-soo for the newly released album "Jayuro Music Festival" by the members of popular MBC variety programme "Infinite Challenge." The single became a big hit, topping the local real time music charts.

However, soon after the song's release, netizens revealed that Primary's track, along with several other tracks previously produced by the artist, bore striking resemblances to songs produced by David Schreurs. Schreurs produced Dutch singer Caro Emerald's "Liquid Lunch," from which the Korean hip-hop artist is accused of lifting the melody.

"These days, there are more and more overseas producers, composers and songwriters expressing interest working with Korean music artists," said the industry insider. "Although such international collaborations are becoming more commonplace in the industry, any time a high profile plagiarism case emerges, it never looks good."

The K-pop industry is no stranger to copyright infringement allegations, with some of the most notorious cases involving some of the nation's biggest acts, including Big Bang leader G-Dragon and solo diva Lee Hyori. This year alone Primary is merely joining a list of other stars such as IU and Roy Kim, whom netizens have accused of having tracks that sound far too similar to other artists' work.

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