What Occurred: Chinese language Canadian pop star Kris Wu has been embroiled in a scandal over the weekend that rocked Chinese language social media. His alleged girlfriend Du Meizhu has accused him of infidelity and seducing underage ladies. Du claimed a number of younger feminine victims had been sexually exploited by Wu, together with herself.
On July 19, Wu and his studio launched separate statements refuting the claims, stating that they’re taking authorized motion for defamation. This incident sparked off a cyberwar in opposition to considered one of China’s most dear faces, however netizen sentiments are polarized. Just a few followers expressed their alignment with Wu, satisfied that the accusation was slander. However the majority of residents advised Wu ought to give up leisure and face authorized sanctions.
Thus far, Wu’s collaboration with Chinese language manufacturers, akin to Tencent Video, C-beauty model KANS, and the cellular sport Honor of Kings, have all been terminated. Lancôme disclosed that its contract with the idol had been due in June in response to the backlash. Nonetheless, this declare prompted outrage on-line, triggering a netizen boycott of the model for not taking a transparent stance by way of an official announcement that clarified its terminated collaboration with the celeb.
The Jing Take: Whereas Chinese language manufacturers are being proactive, worldwide manufacturers are taking a wait-and-see method in direction of this incident. Right now, Louis Vuitton hid all Wu-related posts on its Weibo web page and posted an announcement, saying, “Louis Vuitton takes the current accusations regarding Mr. Kris Wu very critically and as such suspends its collaboration with the artist till the investigation is concluded.” Nonetheless, Bvlgari and L’Oréal Males Skilled, which additionally appointed Wu as its model ambassador, have but to launch any official bulletins.
China’s distinctive idol tradition, with its many pitfalls, is nothing new to luxurious gamers. The enterprise worth of celeb endorsements is indeniable, particularly on the subject of China’s hardcore fan bases, who’re prepared to nurture their idols’ careers. However extra importantly, fan teams normally see themselves as accountable contributors by pledging loyalty and actively shopping for or selling the merchandise and types endorsed by their idols.
On the flip facet, this loyalty and attachment create dangers for manufacturers that leverage idol economies. In Kris Wu’s case, netizen sentiment tended to be detrimental and aggressive, given the a number of allegations from totally different younger girls. Nonetheless, there is no such thing as a conclusive proof but. Though the luxurious homes concerned along with his model sponsorships appear to be betting on a positive flip, netizens won’t wait lengthy for a clarified assertion.
The Jing Take reviews on a chunk of the main information and presents our editorial crew’s evaluation of the important thing implications for the luxurious business. Within the recurring column, we analyze the whole lot from product drops and mergers to heated debate sprouting on Chinese language social media.