Earlier this year, K-pop group IZ*ONE announced their disbandment. Now, fans have raised over a million dollars to help them stay together.
Earlier this year, hearts were broken as K-pop group IZ*ONE announced that they would be disbanding in April after three years as an act. For those unaware of K-pop’s music survival show system, the 12 members of IZ*ONE were part of a temporary K-pop group consisting of the winners of the music reality show Produce 48.
For some time, their rising trajectory and popularity prompted fans to speculate that the group might extend its activities beyond the stipulated three years, but in March 2021, Mnet, Swing Entertainment, and Off The Record confirmed that the group would disband as planned.
Now, however, fans have banded together in a crowdfunding initiative to prevent that from happening. Called the ‘Parallel Universe Project’, the fundraiser is aimed at raising capital to ensure IZ*ONE’s continual as an act.
Reportedly, the fundraiser reached 73% of its goal within 10 minutes of launch. Despite being open only domestically to South Korean fans, the initiative raised ₩737,855,670 KRW (approximately $903,000 AUD).
After 21 minutes, it had blazed past the 100% goal, earning a whopping ₩1,200,000,000 KRW (approximately $1,384,107 AUD). As of now, the count is at 2.5 million AUD, but earning mixed reactions. While some are in favour of fans banding together to save their favorite acts, others feel that it would keep the members from exploring more lucrative avenues.
According to information on the fundraiser, the project will first contact each of the members’ individual agencies to start negotiations. While it is unclear how successful the project will be, fans who donated will be sent certificates of proof for their donation, as well as receive regular updates on the status of the negotiations.
You can read more about this topic over at the Asia Pop Observer.