The EBS children’s show “Tok! Tok! Boni Hani” has addressed concerns after videos were shared online involving Busters’s Chaeyeon, in which she appears to be hit by a fellow cast member as well as verbally harassed by another.
On December 11, a video was shared online of Chaeyeon (who is 15 years old in Western reckoning) on the set of the show with fellow cast members for a live broadcast. The video shows Chaeyeon seemingly reaching out to put her hand on comedian Choi Young Soo’s arm as he was walking away. He turns around and appears to hit her. The moment in which she would have been hit is obscured by another cast member walking in front of them, however Chaeyeon is holding her left upper arm as he walks away.
EBS has denied that there had been any violence between cast members of the show, describing the scene as the cast joking together. A representative of Chaeyeon also reportedly stated that it was a joke and not violent.
In another video, Park Dong Geun is heard calling Chaeyeon things such as a “Listerine sterilized b***h,” and when she appears to not hear him properly or understand at first, he shortens it to a phrase meaning “venomous b***h.” The phrase about Listerine has been described as something that is commonly used at adult entertainment establishments, referencing sex workers who use mouthwash to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.
38살 개그맨 박동근이 방송 중에 “독한 년”이라고 언급하는 영상입니다. 보니하니에 같이 출연하는 개그맨입니다. 현재 이 영상은 유튜브 채널에서 비공개로 전환되었습니다.
두 영상 모두 널리 공유 부탁드리며, 많은 보력 부탁드립니다. pic.twitter.com/KNR6iwSr3U
— 고즌 (@alwayszziluv) December 11, 2019
In regards to the comments that many are describing as verbal sexual harassment of a minor, EBS stated, “There was always Listerine in the waiting room, and Chaeyeon would always gargle with Listerine before a show.” They added, “During the live broadcast, he was joking with Chaeyeon and said it to tease her, but both the producer and Park Dong Geun himself did not know that it was a problematic expression.” The network apologized for the use of the expression without knowledge of the meaning, saying both the producers and Park Dong Geun were surprised.
Calls for Choi Young Soo and Park Dong Geun’s departure from the show continued online, and EBS has now issued the following statement:
The following is EBS’s apology letter:
We sincerely apologize to the viewers who always love EBS.
Recently, the the YouTube broadcast of EBS’s popular program ‘Tok! Tok! Boni Hani’ included a scene of violence and a scene of verbal sexual harassment which were broadcast without editing. They have caused much discomfort and hurt to our viewers, who are mainly young students. EBS accepts how serious the situation is, and we strongly feel responsibility.
As soon as EBS became aware of the incidents, we held an emergency planning meeting and we established our next steps as a company and determined how we will carry them out. Firstly, we are immediately suspending the two cast members involved in the issue [Choi Young Soo, Park Dong Geun], and we have deleted the YouTube video.
Rather than this incident being a personal issue between cast members, it is first the great responsibility of EBS’s management. EBS is also very shocked and feels greatly responsible after this incident, which should never have happened, occurred. After this incident, we will be re-examining our entire process for choosing the cast members of our programs. We take full responsibility for our program staff, and we plan to strictly implement disciplinary steps and follow-up measures. Most importantly, we will be thoroughly looking into the cause of the incident so that it does not happen again, and we will realign our production system and whole process of production, taking on strict rexamination and development.
So that this kind of incident does not occur again, EBS will be stricter and more careful while producing programs. We once again bow our heads in apology to the viewers who trusted EBS.
Top Lower Photo Credit: Xportsnews
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