News / Hot Issues / Scandals

Gaon Chart K-Pop Awards Voting System Manipulation Launches Battle Between EXO And Big Bang Fans

By Samantha Marie Lifson | February 15, 2016 04:51 PM EST

Gaon, Korean's premier music charting source, is investigating alleged vote rigging for their upcoming Gaon Chart K-pop Awards.

The issue came to light after EXO fans noticed a strange surge in voting between 3 and 5am KST on February 11.

Initially, EXO was in the top spot on Gaon's daily popularity ranking with 47 percent of the vote with Big Bang in second place at 45 percent. However, after 5am, Big Bang had jumped to the top of the chart with a shocking 75% of the vote.

When EXO fans inquired about the sudden change, Gaon returned with news of Big Bang's Chinese fandom participating in unfair voting practices.

"Around 1 to 5am on February 11, we confirmed that an area in China partook in unfair voting methods," Gaon said in a statement after EXO fans inquired about the large shift in numbers. "We discovered that through abusing methods such as "Mission Charge" and "Fandom Mission," among others, at charging stations, [these fans] irregularly gained voting points."

To avoid similar issues from arising in the future, Gaon announced that they shut down "Mission Charge" and "Fandom Mission" methods of voting. They also included an apology for any stress the voting system may have caused fans.

Online, many were quick to praise EXO fans for catching the suspicious chart behavior, and also to talk down about Big Bang's Chinese followers. "That fandom is always icky. Look at them using dirty means because they have no confidence in winning," one Korean user left on Gaon's apology post, according to AllKpop"I'm an outside fan but really, this crossed the line," another wrote.

Battles between EXO fans and Big Bang fans are common since both groups are highly recognized worldwide and come from the largest entertainment companies in Korea. Adding fuel to the fandom fire, EXO and Big Bang had overlapping comeback schedules this past summer, prompting additional fighting between fans of the two groups.

With the recent issue resolved, fans can look forward to Gaon's 5th Gaon Chart K-pop Awards taking place on February 17 in Seoul.

Tagged :  EXO, Big Bang, Gaon Chart

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