Finally some good news for Lovelyz’ Seo Ji Soo. Two internet trolls have been fined for their online abuse against the girl group singer since before the group’s debut.
Lovelyz’ agency Woollim Entertainment revealed on May 8 that two perpetrators – one adult and one underaged minor – had been served penalties in the form of a monetary fine and juvenile rehabilitation, respectively.
“Through the legal investigation we discovered that this wasn’t merely just a case of defamation or online rumors about Seo, 21, but also a premeditated action of spreading false information with the intent of slandering an individual,” said Woollim in their statement.
“With the goal of slandering the victim, the accused damaged the reputation of the victim by publicly pushing lies through information and communications network,” added the agency, who also represent idol boy band Infinite.
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Back in November 2014, Lovelyz were preparing for their grand debut when negative rumors about the then-20-year-old Seo began circulating on various Korean social media sites. Rumors of the idol starlet ranged from discrepancies of her sexuality (that she was in fact a lesbian); that she came to Woollim to seduce the boys of Infinite; to accusations that she fantasised about raping others. Some members of the public claiming to be victims of her bullying abuse and rape even uploaded their accounts with photographic evidence.
As a result of the online slander, Seo’s health deteriorated so gravely that she was hospitalized and Lovelyz had to make their stage debut in her absence. Woollim Entertainment stated that it would take legal action against any persons spreading false rumors against the singer and clearly, they weren’t kidding.