NCT 127 was originally scheduled for a fanmeeting in Japan on August 2, 2022. However, just a day before the fanmeeting, SM Entertainment shocked and angered fans by announcing that three out of the nine members would not be attending.
Mark, Jaehyun, and Johnny would not be attending the fanmeeting due to COVID-19 matters. The three had tested positive and was unable to make it on the plane. While fans were understanding about the boys’ health, what angered NCTzens was how shady their management had been about the issue.
마크·재현·쟈니 일본 팬미팅 불참 공지 pic.twitter.com/pB04KoWDT4
— 우리칠 아카이브 (@NCT127_archive_) August 1, 2022
This is an announcement in relation to the attendance for NCTzen 127 – JAPAN Meeting 2022, School 127. Thank you always for your sincere support towards NCT 127. We have an announcement regarding the performers’ attendance of the fanclub event, NCTzen 127 – JAPAN Meeting 2022, School 127 that was to be held on August 2, and 3, 2022 at Saitama Super Arena. Mark, Jaehyun and Johnny tested positive for COVID019 last week and following the set rules, they underwent the 7 days of quarantine and treatment in their homes. After the quarantine was lifted, Mark, Jaehyun, and Johnny went for a PCR test in order to participate in the event but all three of them still tested positive and it is unfortunate but they are unable to leave the country. Following this, apart from Mark, Jaehyun, and Johnny, the other members, Taeil, Taeyong, Yuta, Doyoung, Jungwoo and Haechan will participate as 6. We are sorry for worrying those that are supporting NCT 127 and the three of them and seek your understanding. Also, refunds due to the change in attendance will be difficult. Please understand.
— SM Entertainment
Fans question why the company failed to report on the health status of Jaehyun, and Johnny. Previously, SM Entertainment had announced that Mark had tested positive for COVID-19 on July 25, 2022. The announcement came as Mark had originally be slated to perform for NCT Dream‘s second solo concert. Although it is not legally required of companies to announce the health status of their artists, the custom has been so since the pandemic started due to the sensitive nature of COVID-19.
Fans also question the intentions of the company for announcing it just a day before the fanmeeting, such that refunds would be difficult.
- “LOL they fussed with an announcement a day before but tell us that you can’t refund the tickets based on a change in performers.”
- “So they would’ve just flown if the PCR was negative, how terrible of them…”
- “Who knew the positive cases last week would be them.”
- “They’re only uploading about the positive cases from last week now…?”
- “An announcement a day before??? It’s too much.”
- “So if there weren’t any official schedules, I wouldn’t even know if my bias got COVID or not, SM?”
While some argue that health matters are private and personal, the Korean sentiment is for public figures to declare their COVID-19 status due to the sensitive nature of the virus and their active jobs.