The project girl group IOI gained extreme popularity after debut. Due to their incredible popularity and chart-topping songs, IOI was accused of sajaegi, or chart manipulation. The group definitely beat veteran groups such as AOA and even went head to head with top groups such as TWICE and Black Pink. Their huge increase in sales, especially since they were an experimental group, had fans speculating that their company was playing a big part in drawing the public’s attention.
However, these rumors seemed to become overshadowed by the fact that even though their sales and votes were higher than BlackPink, IOI did not receive the Rookie Award of the year from MelOn during 2016.
South Korean boy group TEEN TOP has been accused of sajaegi on more than one occasion. In 2014, TEEN TOP became a huge topic of conversation among the public when the group and their agency, TOP Media, filed a lawsuit against 4 netizens deemed responsible for starting and spreading the accusations of chart manipulation in October 2014.
Their agency TOP Media confirmed to Star News that they have filed a lawsuit against 4 individuals who spread false rumors about album sajaegi when TEEN TOP 20’S LOVE ONE EXITO was released for defamation of character.
Teen Top’s accusation of the chart manipulation factor, making their album promotion was not easy. Moreover, the tweet from 2PM’s Jun K which was ambiguous and mentioned the sajaegi didn’t help. This led to the bad relation between Teen Top and 2PM’s fans. So 2PM’s Taecyeon came to intervene to calm down the situation.
Astro was also suspected of having done sajaegi. ASTRO was accused of sajaegi after their album Dream Part 01 quickly increased its ranking on K-Pop album charts.
There are two reasons why Astro was suspected of having done sajaegi. First, the boy group sold over 14,000 copies of its album in two days. By the way, it is usually considered that only very popular boy groups can sell over 10,000 copies of their albums during the weekend. Well, Astro was not a very popular boy group before, but it was true it was a little bit strange. Second, Astro’s album sales in the first week had increased drastically.
That was all the information about what is sajaegi in K-Pop and artists accused of sajaegi. Please, don’t forget to kindly share your thoughts in the comment section below!