Renowned K-drama actress Kim Tae Ri recently found herself at the center of a heated controversy when she made a request to her fans that sparked a wave of backlash. In a vlog posted on her YouTube channel, the actress explained that her international subscribers have been asking for subtitles on her vlogs. Because of this, Tae Ri asked for volunteers from her fans who are willing to contribute as translators for her content.
This unexpected plea for what netizens perceived as "free labor" immediately ignited a debate among her Korean fans, prompting mixed reactions and discussions about the value of creative labor.
Kim Tae Ri is celebrated for her exceptional performances in Twenty-Five Twenty-One and The Handmaiden. However, her call for ~unpaid~ translation services struck a nerve with many fans who felt that it undermined the value of labor. As the controversy escalated, the actress took to social media once again, this time to issue an apology in response to the fervent backlash.
Here’s her full statement:
“Hello, this is Kim Taeri.
Above all, I’m sorry for the trouble I have caused. I'd like to express my apologies to everyone I made feel uncomfortable. As I was worried that this might cause further discomfort to many people, I was cautious and delayed in addressing this issue. I am writing this to convey my apologies to those who may be disappointed in me.
I planned my vlog as a way to repay the love I have received from my fans, and I have been involved in every step of the process, from filming to editing to, at present, the English subtitles. I thought that this might be a more complete way to repay my fans.
Since the video was released, fans from various countries, not just English-speaking ones, have requested subtitles in their own languages. Seeing the different languages under the video made me think about how great it would be if they could enjoy the video with subtitles in their own language. But because I was so focused on the idea of completing something meaningful with my fans, I failed to approach the most important issue with caution. Clearly, I fell short.
I should not have approached my fans as if I was asking for talent donations. It was a clear mistake, and I deeply reflect on the fact that I was not aware of it myself. I apologize to everyone who may have felt uncomfortable due to my short-sighted thoughts and actions.
I realize that a sincere apology is more important than anything else. I sent an apology email to everyone who so kindly offered to help with the translation work.
Once again, I sincerely apologize.”
*This story originally appeared on Cosmo.ph. Minor edits have been made by the Preview.ph editors.