SEVENTEEN‘s latest preview for GOING SEVENTEEN seems to have rubbed fans the wrong way. When fans were watching the preview, they realized that the boys were holding up the trademark pink spoons for Baskin Robbins, with some telltale cups of dessert on the table. Baskin Robbins is one of the most famous ice cream stores in South Korea. While this normally would not have been an issue, the Baskin Robbins brand is in deep waters thanks to its parent company, SPC Group.
Idols are often known to include PPL (product placement) advertisements in their contents. In SEVENTEEN’s case, they had included Baskin Robbins for their next episode. While this is normal practice, SPC has recently been embroiled in an issue over labor rights. This issue most directly affects women workers at Paris Baguette, another franchise under the SPC Group. According to the news, not only were female employees at Paris Baguette discriminated against and treated differently from the male workers, Paris Baguette had also been sneakily hiring young bakers under contractual employment. This deprived the young, female, bakers of many employment rights including medical benefits, menstrual and pregnancy leave, holidays, and more. Many students’ and women’s groups have been boycotting the brands under SPC.
The preview was released on August 17, 2022. The hashtag #GOINGSEVENTEEN_CancelYourBaskinRobbinsPPL has been trending since then, with over 5000 individual tweets. Fans have been requesting for the episode to be edited with Baskin Robbins taken out and for Pledis Entertainment to pay the contractual fees. This group of CARATs feel strongly about the matter given that the affected workers are in their 20s to 30s, which is also a huge target group of SEVENTEEN’s fanbase.
Fans are refusing to be seen as blind supporters of groups and entertainment any more. The said episode is slated for release at 9pm KST on August 24, 2022. HYBE did not respond to the media’s request for a statement.