Guno, BUGVEL member & ex-YGE trainee, says K-p system ‘borders on inhumane’ and talks needing support from home

Guno — a Taiwanese former YG Entertainment trainee, former Produce X 101 contestant, and current member of J-pop group BUGVEL (come on with that name, man) — recently spoke to media in his home country and contrasted K-pop and J-pop’s trainee systems. In the interview, he notably describes K-pop as extremely strict and inhumane at times.

Wang Jyun Hao said, “The training methods in Japan and Korea are quite different. Korea tends to be overly strict, even bordering on inhumane at times.” 
Then, he detailed one incident, “Once, I pretended as if I was throwing away some trash from our dorm, but actually sneaked out to a convenience store with other trainees. I wanted to buy some coke at the time. Unfortunately, we got caught the next day, and I received quite a scolding.” 
Continuously shedding light on the challenges of being a trainee, he added, “Unless you’re under a major agency, you often have to rely on money from home. Even after debuting, that support from home remains a must.”

The funny thing is that I think the reaction of most K-pop fans to that is “well that seems pretty standard”, and they aren’t wrong, but taking a step back from the norms of the industry and that does seem hilariously tyrannical in any other context. And of course the money/debt issues are well documented as well.

Also, while I wouldn’t be caught dead vouching for J-pop companies or that industry either, given what we know about survival shows (and YGE), it’s hard to not be understanding of his perspective. He started his life in the public eye on YG Treasure Box and then was on the Mnet rigged Produce X 101 before finding a home in Japan, so needless to say I doubt he has much positive to relay about his experiences there.


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