K-Pop songs deemed unsuitable for Broadcast


For someone who is from Europe, but came to love K-Pop music, there are moments when I pause.. “What?!” One of the things that I still am having a hard time understanding is when broadcast companies announce a ban on songs, as they deem them unsuitable for broadcast.

On the 4th, 4MINUTE`s comeback track “Just Do The First Verse” and INFINITE H‘s “As Long as You’re Not Crazy” songs were deemed inappropriate for broadcast by KBS, which is receiving a strong reaction from Korean netizens.

In 4MINUTE`s song the line in the lyrics that KBS finds problematic was revealed to be, “Tell me I’m rude over and over again, we’ll see if you’re giving advice or just an old man babbling.” Nerveless, a representative of 4MINUTE stated that they have no plans to edit the song.

Generally songs get banned for its use of slang and vulgar language, their sensual lyrics or provocative and suggestive sexual content, for containing a specific brand (such as “Facebook”), or even if they mention smoking, drinking or partying. That’s because South Korean press is only considered “Partly Free” according to Freedom of the Press 2014 report, and news and culture are often subject to government oversight.


This leads to K-pop songs being regularly banned from public broadcast because they are considered promoting partying, drugs, or other “damaging” topics. For example Psy’s “Gentleman” was banned because in the song’s music video Psy kicks a “no parking” cone, and this is deemed a damage to public property; or Crayon Pop song “Uh-ee” was banned for having Japanese language.

If in Europe or U.S.A songs were banned for things/topics like that, around 80% of the music wouldn’t see the light in music channels. What are your thoughts on the matter?


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