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Politician Park Geun Hye Meets Socialtainer Kim Je Dong

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2012.01.03 15:10 Mwave Lee, JinHo

Is it okay for an entertainer to reveal his/her political views on TV programs? The answer is bound to be different depending on the individual. However, the guidelines of major TV networks KBS and MBC state, “Supporting or opposing a certain candidate or a party through the content of broadcasting is prohibited.”

But what if an entertainer reveals his political view as a joke on an entertainment program? And what if the person in question is socialtainer (a term referring to entertainers who express their political ideas and give their opinions on social issues) Kim Je Dong?

Politician Park Geun Hye Meets Socialtainer Kim Je Dong

Park Geun Hye, chairperson of the emergency steering committee of the Grand National Party appeared on the January 2 broadcast of SBS’ Healing Camp to share her political opinions and life story. Park’s appearance itself attracted a lot of attention, and the fact that she appeared on a program hosted by well-known socialtainer Kim Je Dong drew even more attention.

Many people took a keen interest in the encounter with the head of the conservative party and the liberal socialtainer. During the talk show, the two, who have starkly different views and ideas from each other, engaged in a fierce battle. When Park said“I like Kim Je Dong quotes”and recited some of the things the socialtainer has said, Kim responded, “Did you write some down in your notebook?” referring to Park’s nickname ‘Notebook Princess.’

Kim also asked, “You entered politics in 1997 but didn′t become a real politician until 2004 when you took the job as the leader of your party. Becoming the leader of a party in six years is like a rapid promotion for a company. Don’t you think so?” To this, Park replied, “It was not a rapid promotion. It was such a heavy responsibility and burden. Moreover, at that time, many people tried to stop me from taking the job because there were many problems [in the party].”

The conversation thus far would be considered normal for a politician who decides to appear on an entertainment program. However, Kim took it one step further and asked, “If you have to choose an aide between Lee Kyung Gyu and me, who would you choose?” before Lee interjected and said, “Consider personality first before [political] disposition.” Kim then added, “If disposition matters, she might not choose me.”

With this remark, Kim made it clear that his political views are different from Park′s. To be clear, a celebrity has the freedom and right to reveal his/her political ideas and opinions. However, it becomes a different issue if that person does so on a TV program. If things were the other way around, and Park made similar remarks towards Kim, the issue would be clearer.

Remarks from an influential socialtainer like Kim, who has more than 600,000 Twitter followers, can impact viewers as well as his followers. What is more worrisome is that such remarks were made not in a personal space, like social networks, but on a TV program.

Such issues might arise again as other politicians appear on such programs. In fact, Moon Jae In, the former chief secretary to late President Roh Mu Hyun is set to appear on the next episode of Healing Camp. In other words, political biases can be relayed to viewers depending on what kind of disposition MCs have, and there is growing concern that entertainment programs could turn into political programs.

Photo credit: SBS

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