FACT CHECK: Is Jamaica The First Country To Make K-Pop Illegal?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Reporter

An image shared on Facebook claims Jamaica is the first country to make Korean pop music (K-pop) illegal.

Facebook/Screenshot

Verdict: False

There is no evidence Jamaica banned K-pop music. A government official confirmed there is no law prohibiting the music.

Fact Check:

K-pop, which started in South Korea, has grown into a global phenomenon in recent years, according to BBC. The industry’s biggest stars, bands like BTS and Blackpink, are routinely at the top of Billboard’s global chart, according to Forbes.

Now, an image on Facebook includes a 2015 picture of four members of the K-pop band BTS, with text reading, “Jamaica becomes the first country to make K-pop illegal.” Below that is a picture showing a scene from the movie “Spider-Man 2” with an image of the Jamaican flag superimposed over Spider-Man’s face.

There is, however, no evidence Jamaica has banned K-pop music. Jamaica’s Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport’s website makes no mention of any law prohibiting the music. Had Jamaica banned an entire genre of music, international media outlets likely would have reported on it, yet none have.

“This is not true,” Robert Nesta Morgan, Jamaica’s minister of state for education, youth and information, told Check Your Fact in a Twitter direct message. “Our Constitution would not allow such a thing.”

While K-pop has not been banned in Jamaica, North Korea forbids citizens from consuming media, including K-pop, from other countries, according to CNN(RELATED: Viral Image Claims Jamaica Doesn’t Have Any Coronavirus Cases)

The claim appears to stem from an August 2018 article posted by the website 8Satire, a self-described “satire and humor website.” Despite 8Satire’s clear disclaimers that there is no truth to the claim, social media users have been sharing it without such warnings, seemingly believing it to be true.

Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Reporter
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