Last week, a clip was released showing Justin Huang Minghao (黄明昊) confronting some of the sasaeng fans that were following him while filming for variety show, “Not A Loner” (看我的生活). The encounter wasn’t very pleasant as some of the sasaeng fans questioned why they couldn’t film him when other celebrities allowed them to do so. Later on, one of the “daipai” (substitute photographers), even approached the cameraman and got a little testy.
After the clip aired, one of the sasaeng fans posted a statement claiming she wasn’t a sasaeng fan and was actually one of his “zhanjie” (female fans taking pictures with professional cameras or admins of fan sites). In her post, she explained what sasaeng fans were and said there were a few other “zhanjies” present that day. She also explained taking pictures at public events including filming on location for variety shows were always part of the vicinity allowing fansites to take pictures.
She also alleged the show had wanted to portray them as sasaeng fans to drum up publicity for the show, which is why the camera was on them from the start. When they found out they weren’t sasaeng fans, they came over to discuss with them and told them to leave to protect them. She and a few others immediately left after hearing this. She didn’t think the show would use malicious editing and portray fans in a bad light to hype up the show. In the end, this zhanjie decided to stop stanning Justin Huang and close down her site of two years. Even so, many of his fans left comments yelling at her to leave quietly and for putting the blame on Justin Huang and the show.
Due to the heated debate, Justin Huang clarified the situation that day in a post on June 6:
“Regarding the show releasing last week’s trailer about the sasaengs, I still want to say, some of them filmed were sasaengs. Some were fansites. A lot of them were with me since debuting. They have never followed me in my private life. The show can’t tell which are fansites or sasaengs either. So I will choose to communicate with them. In fact, most of them left after listening. There were also a small portion of sasaengs still following. I’ve promised I would protect those fans who listen to me, but I can’t control how it’s edited either. I can only let the show blur out the faces including the sounds. I hope everyone can mutually understand each other. When I am filming the show, my job is to film the show well. I don’t want to affect the filming either, but fansites are not sasaengs. They have never followed my private life.”