Big Hit and Naver announced in January a partnership that would be the “new era for music.” But along with the news came confusion and misinformation among fans.
In January, Big Hit Entertainment (recently renamed HYBE) and Naver confirmed their plans to integrate V Live and Weverse to create a new global fan community platform. The merge would bring together all their services, users, and content.
The investment estimated at 317 million USD would move to HYBE's subsidiary platform, beNX, now called Weverse Company Inc.
BTS performs "Idol" on "The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon" | Source: Getty Images
Naver’s CEO, Han Seong Sook, released a statement explaining they wanted to create more “synergy between domestic platforms,” intending to become a matchless player in the global entertainment market.
In other words, they want to use the platform to take K-Pop fandom culture beyond Asia and North America. V Live and Weverse users consist of 85% of international fans.
However, the merger announcement of V Live and Weverse caused mass panic, with fans confused about how the two apps will merge into a bigger and better platform with all current content.
Thus, speculation began. When none of the companies gave further details on how the new platform will look like, some fans came to Twitter and created their own conclusions:
"HYBE plans on closing VLIVE I’m first quarter of 2022 [...] As a result, the majority of artists and fans who are not affiliated with HYBE LABELS have simply been thrown into the air”
Other fans responded that there hadn’t been official news from HYBE about disintegrating V Live. However, other fans wondered what will happen with the existing content in V Live after it merges with Weverse.
To debunk false claims and beliefs regarding the merger, a user explained that if the new integrated platform is planned to launch at the beginning of 2022, and the companies will notify reputable sources:
“There hasn’t been much news about VLive integration and how it will be implemented in articles (or any reputable sources so far).”
While waiting for news on the merge, fans have had tons of gossip involving K-Pop idols recently including the ever problematic Oli London, who spent $150,000 on plastic surgery to look like BTS' Jimin.