Back in July it was announced that the KCSC would be fining CJ E&M, the parent company of Mnet, who were in charge of all the ‘Produce 101’ seasons and thus the subsequent vote manipulation controversy. Then in August the KCSC revealed they would impose the harshest fines they could on the survival show. Today that punishment was decided as effectively ~$25k per season of PD101 for a total of ~$100k.
During a meeting on September 14, the KCSC decided on a fine of 30 million won (approximately $25,400) for each of the seasons of the show (“Produce 101,” “Produce 101 Season 2,” “Produce 48,” and “Produce X 101”), which is the maximum fine that they can impose according to current law. This means a total fine of 120 million won (approximately $101,500) for the series as a whole. The KCSC stated, “In addition to the severe damage done to the viewers and participants, it is a serious problem that the network did not have any verification system in place, despite almost four years of systematic manipulation of the results of viewer votes.”
So basically the KCSC did all they could, but if $100k doesn’t sound much to a conglomerate with $59 billion in revenue, at least in the sense that it would be deterrent, then you’re absolutely right.
Sure, some individuals were sentenced, but considering they miraculously proved that the shows were rigged thanks to hilariously obvious paper trails, the consequences for the companies were basically nothing considering the potential upside they gained from it.