While there are many reasons why K-pop is a globally acclaimed phenomenon, stirring controversy remains an enduring feature of its popularity.
Recently, Kim Jaejoong of the K-pop group JYJ, revealed to his nearly 2 million followers on Instagram that he had contracted Covid-19 and was currently hospitalised and receiving treatment.
But only an hour after his announcement, the K-pop star's since-deleted post was later clarified to be an April Fools’ Day.
"I've been infected with Covid-19. This was brought through my carelessness, for not minding the proper measures given by the government and the people closest to me," Jaejoong wrote.
"It's a wonder how significantly one person's actions can affect the greater society. I am apologetic toward those who may have also been inflicted with the virus because of me. I've become like this because of my stupid decision, to live thinking it'll never be me. I am being hospitalised. I am wrapped up feelings of gratitude and apology while reflecting on my past. There are so many things I want to say. I want to see so many people," he added.
Upon the news initially breaking, Jaejoong's representative label and agency C-Jes Entertainment RGC in Korea responded to reports saying they were checking to confirm as the star was currently in Japan.
According to the Korean star, his initial post was an effort to raise awareness.
He later posted saying, "To have someone you love or someone precious to you be infected with a virus, it is a heartbreaking thing. Despite that fact, there are so many people who are still roaming the streets, acting as if it won't ever happen to them. Many people are worried that their family and loved ones may fall ill because of such people. Mistakenly thinking that you and the people around you will remain safe can do a lot of damage."
"Many of my acquaintances and staff are also seeing their loved ones testing positive for the virus. This is not a faraway story... This prank (seems) out of hand for a simple April Fool's joke, but many people worried for me in a short period of time."
He continued, "This is definitely not something that only happens to other people! I wanted to tell everyone that protecting yourself is also the solution to protecting others. I will receive all the punishment that I am due for this post. I hope you will all stay healthy."