Actress sacked from gaming job after “Girls do not need a prince” controversy

A voice-over actress was fired from her gaming job in South Korea after she tweeted a picture of herself wearing a t-shirt with the slogan “Girls do not need a prince”.

Image from Twitter/@KNKNOKU
Image from Twitter/@KNKNOKU

BBC’s Steve Evans reported from Seoul that Kim Jayeon’s picture has caused her to lose her job. She was the voice of one of the characters in a South Korean online game called “Closers”.

The company that produced the game, Nexon, received complaints, several of which were considered offensive and anti-women according to many feminists.

The debate centered on the slogan, which is used by a feminist group in South Korea called Megalia. The group’s, usually anonymous members, campaign against misogyny in Korean life.

The t-shirt is sold by Megalia to finance lawsuits brought by women against men they alleged had ill-treated them. The slogan is meant to signify that women do not need a man to protect and support them.

As a result Nexon terminated Jayeon’s employment and told the BBC that “she would be paid in full for her work but her voice would not be used on the game.”

In a statement the company said it “recognised the voices of concern amongst the Closers community”, and “we have suddenly decided to seek a replacement in the role”.

Due to the sacking of Jayeon a demonstration was held with the protest quickly growing to a crowd of 300.

One Megalia activist involved, Alex Song, told the BBC that a counter-demonstration was held by a group of men and that she felt intimidated by the crowd who took pictures of the female protesters and called them “pigs”.

Jayeon is said to not be giving interviews and it is not known whether she understood the context of the shirt and its slogan.

Kayleigh Bateman
About the author

Kayleigh Bateman is the head of digital content and business development at WeAreTheCity. As a journalist there she covers stories about women in IT and looks after its women in technology community. She was previously the special projects editor for Computer Weekly and editor of CW Europe. Kayleigh attended the University of Hertfordshire, where she studied for her BA in English literature, journalism and media cultures. You can contact her at [email protected]

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