S. Korean state music chart service takes action to stop manipulation

Park Sae-jin Reporter Posted : 2018-07-09 17:20 Updated : 2018-07-09 17:20
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SEOUL -- To prevent over-enthusiastic fans and management agencies from manipulating music charts using unusual methods, Gaon Chart, the state music ranking service group in South Korea, will "freeze" its real-time chart service after midnight from August 11.

Gaon Chart's policy board committee said in a statement on Monday that it would freeze its real-time chart for seven hours from 1:00 a.m. (1600GMT) to prevent manipulation. "By blocking all chart manipulation attempts, we will be able to increase the credibility of music chart services," a Gaon official was quoted as saying.

Sajaegi, which means hoarding in Korean, has been rampant among South Korean artists and fans. Some unpopular artists buy and stream songs after midnight when active users sleep to manipulate a real-time chart and pull up the rankings of their songs.

In April, "Pass By", a song released in October last year by an obscure singer-songwriter called "Nilo", soared to the No.1 place in the real-time chart of Melon, the country's largest online music service, from No. 600. Fans accused the singer and his agency of manipulating the chart.