KCON USA, is said to be one of the biggest annual Korean pop culture festivals held in Los Angeles. Focused on the Hallyu-wave, it promotes Korean pop culture and music, featuring a wide range of K-Pop artists and more holding live performances for thousands of fans.
The festival that started in 2012 has now expanded to almost 10 countries with not just K-Pop but also Korean small and medium businesses getting a way to connect with customers and advertise themselves.
However, KCON USA has come under fire for an extremely racist job posting.
What Is This Racist Job Posting?
Earlier in the week, Twitter users started to post about a job listing for KCON USA uploaded on Backstage, a casting website. The hiring post was for the position of lead “Event Staff” at the KCON Convention, with the job looking for female applicants between the ages of 18-30.
The requirements listed down what applicants would have to do as event staff, but what caught people’s attention was the ‘ethnicity’ section that very clearly mentioned just “Asian, White / European descent”.
People did instantly call out the organisers at KCON about this, even after they put up an apology post claiming they did not know about this posting.
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Soon after the job posting went viral, KCON USA posted a statement on its social media pages writing “The job posting at issue has been brought to our attention, and we are taking this matter very seriously. We want to let all of our KCONers and the public know and make it absolutely clear that we have not authorized nor endorsed such a posting, and are actively investigating the origin and responsible party behind this unauthorized and exclusionary posting.
We strongly denounce any actions of racial profiling or any form of discrimination whatsoever, and indeed this runs counter to the very core spirit of KCON where inclusivity and diversity is celebrated. Moving forward, we will take action to prevent any such instances related to our event.”
KCON USA then recently came out with another statement claiming that the job posting was created by an outside vendor hired by one of its agencies. They also said that they’ve now terminated their relationship with this particular vendor saying,
“We wanted to follow up with you about the results of our investigation into the egregious job posting which you kindly brought to our attention yesterday.
Thank you for your patience.
First of all, as the main organizer of KCON, we regard this matter very seriously and take responsibility for the hurt and disappointment this has caused. We are reinforcing and raising awareness of our commitment to diversity, inclusion, and respect within our organization and those who work with us.
We found that the posting was created by an outside vendor hired by one of KCON’s agencies without their or KCON’s direction or approval. Our agency has terminated the relationship with the outside vendor effective immediately. We are further reviewing measures to ensure greater oversight in all communication channels related to our event going forward.
From the KCON organization, we want to extend a heartfelt apology to all the KCON fans who rightfully expect to be respected and admired and not excluded. In the course of looking into this matter, many of us read your comments and we reaffirmed our commitment to making KCON a place for everyone to enjoy.”
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