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Oh. No. They. Di’n’t.

Because it wasn’t enough to trot out fifteen-year-olds who can’t sing as sexually suggestive coquettes, now a nine-member “kiddie group” called Sweety is making its debut, with members ranging in age from 13 down to its 6-year-old “mascot.” (Btw, that’s eight girls, one boy. He be da pimp.)

They’re being touted as a group with singing skills “on par with adult groups.” If those adult groups mean the Wonder Girls, that’s not saying much. (Before you get offended: listen to this. Or this. Or this. Or this. My opinion is, if they put out such “professional” performances, they’re fair game to be called on it.)

I have nothing against the idea of a pop group aimed at a younger generation — heck, I grew up watching Kids Incorporated and Sesame Street, and my first music record (and nearly last, toy record players being pretty inferior products) was a Care Bears compilation. But it’s not the concept itself that has me feeling uneasy; it’s the tone and content of its marketing.

Singing aside, I’m disturbed at this trend for younger and younger teenage pre-teen poptarts, using the innocent “cute” defense to gloss over any suggestive implications that lie therein. Look, I’m not going call it pedophilic or accuse this group of being blatantly sexual, because I don’t think that’s true. But the point is that the slippery slope is getting slipperier with these mixed messages and crossed signals — tell me Sweety has nothing to do with the sex-peddling marketing strategies behind equally squicky Lolita-laden Wonder Girls or Girls Generation.

You can’t quite defend the choice of costuming as being innuendo-free when those short-short miniskirts are put on by adult stylists onto prepubescent girls — look at those two girls in the middle with their hands on their hips and their hips stuck out in their “Who, me?” faux-innocence poses. Is the coquetry a conscious gesture or has the image become so pervasive that these young girls have adopted it as the norm? Or are they being coached to act that way by their handlers? (ALL of those options seem creepy and unfortunate to me.) And do I see bare MIDRIFF with that cropped top? Even Wonder Girl Sohee admitted just this week that she used to shorten her skirts on her school uniforms. What, did she not have enough leg-baring and hip-swiveling in her day job?

Sweety’s first mini-album reportedly boasts “hip-hop rhythms” with “cute choreography,” and they’ve just filmed their first music video. That video had better be full of stuffed animals, dancing rabbits and animated birds, is all I’m sayin’. Leave the sexy stuff to the adults and let kids be kids, already.

Cable channel Mnet will start airing the group on July 22; a mini-album is set to go on sale soon.

Via No Cut News

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All I have to say: Amen to that!

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all i can say is thank you ahha

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Yeah I heard about this group last week and I was thinking I would write a post but then decided that I was too incensed to put into words how I felt. So thank you for this post. I'm usually going on a tirade about the sneaky sexuality of Girl's Generation. Miniskirts and high kicks shouldn't really go together unless ur a cheerleader. Wonder Girls' sexuality only bothers me because they have 2 fifteen year olds, one of which has become Korea's Lolita. I don't mind Wonder Girls' so much because they aren't sneaky about it.
But sweety is.... It is very rare to find even one child under 14 that can sing well or that can "sing like an adult" but then again, like you said they have the wonder girls and lee hyori to follow, not to much to live up to.

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everyone shortens their skirt in high school.

edit: omg, i just defended sohee. sigh... well in this case, might as well go all out.

i've noticed from pictures that when she's at school she has a simple ponytail with no makeup or fancy accessories, same with when she goes to a radio broadcasting with the other wonder girl members. i often find her in glasses, sneakers, sweats, and t-shirts.

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Yeah, six years at a Catholic school and let me tell you you do NOT want to be that girl with the hem below the knees and the super creased pleats! Fact of life.

But as for the middle schoolers, well that's a different story.

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Oh. My. God.
I think it's worldwide problem that there are no decent children musics, i mean except those that featured on kids/animation movies.
In my country, we recently have a kid's talent shows, and most of the contestants pick 'adult' songs to be performed, just change the word 'lover' to 'friend'. Sick. And sad.

And those Sweety's pictures....i don't find them 'cute'. Scare me.

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Thank you for writing a post about this! I strongly agree with everything you wrote. I dislike the oversexualized way most singers market themselves these days, and I simply can't stand it when an entertainer not yet out of high school is given a "sexy" image. It just doesn't sit right with me. These idol group children already have their childhood taken away, at least in part, by the music industry, and this just worsens the problem.

And discussing Sohee: yes, most girls with uniforms shorten their skirts in America, but it's not nearly as rampant in Korea (I teach at a Korean high school). Someone needs to take the girl aside and tell her to remember that she's 16 (American years) years old. She's not a baby anymore, but she's far from an adult.

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Ewww....

I can understand Girl's Generation and Wonder Girls because at least they're teens and the entertainment industry has being peddling that for years.

But this... is... um... a bit too gross...

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Here's a performance of "Tell Me" that won't make your ears bleed as much:
http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=5lvHg5hYesc

Funny thing is - it's not performed by Wonder Girls.
Dare I say the best "Tell Me" performance you ever heard? =x Although I guess it's not saying much since it isn't that hard to sing better live than them.

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Ohmygod. That is disgusting.

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holy. moly.

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Well, if they do it in a Kidz Bop kind of way, where the music is pop music sung by kids for kids, it could be okay. Here are your stuff animals haha... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-z3OL94isk My kids love kidz bop, and for sure, you can tell these are kids singing. I don't think this group will sound any different. They are too young. Trust me while we have many kidz bop cds, none of it is on my ipod playlist. My kids also like the Naked Brothers Band, but again, the market is aimed at pre-teens. Regardless, given the history of the Wonder Girls, I agree with you about the first photo.

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OH. MY. LORD!
THAT IS SO WRONG!
Why are those parents letting their kids be used like this?
I mean, are these parents blind to what their kids are really going to become to all of those child sex offenders out there.
What is going to the happen to the group when they grow up and their voices change?
And seriously, why is there only ONE boy with EIGHT girls?
I guess, the entertainment company with use the one boy to eight girls when they grow up.
I can see it now,
Eight girls dressing like hookers surrounding one guy who smirks like he's on top of the world.

I'm sorry if I went overboard to anyone but I have two little sisters who are six and ten right now and I can't imagine them dressing like those girls in Sweety.

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The funny thing is that when it comes to the WGs, if u even hint at the fact that they are being sexualized, people (mainly their fans) jump all over you. Their main fan base is grown men. They just recently did a performance with a new "sexy" dance with sohee and sunmi grinding and switching along with the legal ones. one skirt was so short the panties were in full view. After that they performed So Hot which clearly demonstrated that they are all image and concept since they still struggle to "speak" through their own song. I know I sound a little harsh but I can't help it when I see girls around my age being exploited till there is nothing left. they should really train them more in singing and stop worrying about trying to turn everybody on. - Junior Feminist and proud

here's the performance....... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPnmXp01274
i wouldn't be surprised if SWEETY was turned into this in say about two years.

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So wrong...

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well dramabeans, here it is! sweety's very first mv. if it's of any help, their music sounds more like old school k-pop than anything else. relatively more wholesome than wonder girl fare. but they look like a mix of WG and SNSD.. coquettishly sweet :/ you're not going to be happy about the length of their skirts ahem.

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Jc4eoosO0Kc

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julier, i really hope that's the direction the group takes, because I have no problems with a "by kids for kids" vibe... but I don't have a very optimistic feeling, since they're being marketed as "sounds like adult pop singers." They've also got a kpop producer whose credits are groups like Cool and Girlfriends and dance-pop singer Baek Ji-young. So, not too optimistic, no.

Oh, and a few of them are already eyeing this as a "stepping stone" career, professing to acting ambitions. Yeesh!

Wow, that WG perf is awful. How can they sound so bad when there's so little to sing?

EDIT: bird, thanks for the link. The song? Not bad. The dancing and styling? (Really, miniskirts with heels on an 11-year-old?) Not good.

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=( What's happening to this world?

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I just saw the video and yes the song is cute, but some of the girls are wearing high heels o.O *i started wearing mine at 18-19 yrs old*
And they're too young to be under so much pressure "to do well" in this industry...

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Yeah, this is really disturbing..:'( poor kids!!! And I really don't like the trend of old guys being romantically paired up with much younger girls barely out of high school. :'(

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LOL. Japan has pre-teen girl groups (no boy-pimp though, so far) too, and I think Korea is starting to copy the Japanese obsession with cute girls. Which is a shame, because I don't think they need it in the Kpop industry. They have their own brand of music. Why the need to produce little Wondergirls? Ahh, the world of showbiz marketing. :|

And about the "stepping stone" thing, in Japan most of the girls who came from pre-teen girl groups became either car models, B-rated singers or actresses. A few get to be really successful.

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Why would adults want to willingly listen to music sung by little kids? I find it disturbing that this group seems to be marketed with an eye towards the above-child age bracket. WHY? It makes me want to vomit. They're "debuting"? Oh, please.

I find it even more disturbing that parents are so fine with all this, that they're even maybe encouraging it. Case in point: talent shows (like Star King, I think?) with little tiny baby girls in belly-baring, shorter than short outfits, gyrating and dancing like an adult woman, imitating what they see in the music videos. One, their parents allow them to watch and mimic that? And two, their parents put them on national television, showcasing their daughter in a sexual light...because aww, she's cute.
That's not cute, that's downright disgusting and irresponsible, both on the parents' and show's parts. My parents watch those talent shows and I'm always outraged and disgusted when I see those girls come on.

Where's the cute in any of that? Cause all I'm seeing is sick and twisted.

I'm so glad that you're bringing this sort of issue to light.

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Lets just hope the pedophile rate doesn't jump in Korea and their management gets them a better stylist. I hate how now-a-days children's fashion is starting to more and more mimic adult fashion.

Teens in the America's already are looking a lot more skank-ish of late. Like the other day I am in the mall and this kid, not even old enough for employment, is wearing some tight ass jeans like she can't walk in the pants, high heels, a tight fitting tank, and Baby Phat earrings, and the girl was chubby, so the muffin top was all too apparent. And yet, she thought she looked good.

11 year olds in show business I'll never get used to, also. Like the Mini Pop Kids singing Riana's Umbrella song. It hurts my ears and even if you clean the lyrics up so it doesn't sound suggestive it still kinda bugs you 'cus the knowledge that the song ain't for kids is still there in the back of your head.

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What has the music industry come to if they are peddling kids to adults with underlying "suggestions?" Isn't it enough with the old men feasting their eyes upon teenagers? These kids haven't even hit or have just hit puberty.

I agree with disturbed's comment above. The kids can only be their if their parents allow them to be, right? What type of parents are these that peddle their kids out? How can they stand to watch their kids selling their bodies in the music videos? These kids should be in school, not dealing with "debuts" or how to act "sexy."

Do they truly know that to be out there flashing their bodies around (whatever they are doing right now) is what they want to do for the rest of their lives? Sure, many have watched dramas, listened to hit songs and wondered what it would be like to be famous with money pouring in. But, to proclaim that this is their "stepping stone" seems like overkill. They should be performing on kids show for kids.

I really hope that they are not following the steps of the Japanese pre-teen groups such as ella suggest above. Is the music industry really that desperate?

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I think it's disturbing that they're using these kids. I just watched the video and all I can think about is how hectic their lives are going to be in the future and the high heels on the girls, what the heck.
On WG: I just watched all 4 vids, I knew before that they didn't sing well live, but watching those vids was horrible and just plain terrible, don't they have a voice coach to help them at least hit the notes or something.

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I grew up on Sesame Street too. It's the best thing out there. Kids should just live a kid's life instead of venturing into the entertainment industry. It's evil! But the situation's worst in Japan where they really sexualize preteens. I mean, a ten-year-old's photobook with bikini shots??? And the old men lap it all up... And the school uniform has become a lolita symbol if you ask me...

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O M G...wat has the world come to. wat r their mothers thinking, don't they want their kids to have a happy and memoriable childhood and not some slave like tasks everyday? this is crazy.
I don't think its cute or hot, i think the company is trying to rape money off andy possible target. soon it will be babies doing the wiggle dance.

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I would be less disturbed about this group if the MV had little bunny rabbits and animation and stuff, but seriously, little girls wearing high heels dancing around???
Plus, it makes no sense whatsoever for this entertainment company to debut a bunch of kids who havent even been through puberty yet. This group is probably going to last for two years, tops.
It's really sad that I have to know about this. I honestly would have rather been kept in the dark. But I guess this is reality...I just hope that no one else follows suit...

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Wonder Girld and GG is just gross ever.

To add an innocent young kids...arggghh

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Disturbing.. just look at the pose and the skirt.
I can't help to NOT pointing fingers at THE PARENTS.
I hope that these children will survive in life
( Suicide watch... )
R.I.P

I really think I should not say that, but blame my keyboard for that.

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Can we answer teh real question her?

HOW CAN THESE GIRL'S PARENTS ALLOW THEM TO DO THIS!?!??!?!?!

I mean...these KIDS havent gotten rid of baby fat yet, and they are showing bare tummy's

Seriously, WHY? Who does that appeal to? 6 year-old tummy..........

I think its just the fact that our society has gotten so sexual that some boundaries have been crossed without us even noticing it! U know what I mean?

Its like: Y would they even have the idea to show such young girls this way if they weren't expecting to sell......

I hope they maitain teh kids vide thing.....cuz if they start going sexual, that will be messed up........lol i wish I was korean at times like this and stage some sort of album-strike-protest..........

but maybe im getting ahead of mysel......hehehe

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I'm wondering where are the parents of these kids...

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oh.yes.they.did
and god am I revolted by that

when i was 6 and listening to music, I was learning songs like "mary had a little lamb" (or something of that sort) and when I was 13 I was listening to the older backstreet boys

i dont think sweety is either >,

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I can't agree more with your post but. quickly off-topic, doesn't it mean anything that there is already a music group called Sweety? Taiwan has a female duo - who I believe are still in action..
just curious ^^

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seriously...i was completly goin crazy with the outfit and i commented on the video. what is goin on with the length of the outfits and the heels...they didn't even reach their puberty yet...what message are we sending to kids nowadays..then we'll see those same kids sayin that they don't want to take their college exams like those SNDS girls (sorry can't spell) which i question the talent of lot of them...
I am not a conservative girl but i'm just overwhelmed lately with all that sexiness on TV that so acclaimed...it saddened me as if those artists were my kids or sisters. N what saddensme more is seeing plenty talented artists not recognized because they don't want to use the sexy part in their gigs or bc they are different: good example: BIG MAMA, TASHA, Leena Park..
soon, those kids will have plastic surgery or commit suicide since their career won't take off as wished (Unee for example)...
but i wish them the best, and good parental control, the latter is the most important.

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Hmm. I just read an article about a trend in American teen pop music, going for a more squeaky clean, rock look like the Jonas Bros, Miley Cyrus and so on and how it contrasted to the Britney Spears popish suggestiveness of the early 2000's...

Hopefully, this a trend and will be replaced by a better trend of age appopriateness, but I do not intend to support these singers and their efforts by either listening or buying their stuff, and I suggest others so the same.

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poor boy

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...and people wonder what went wrong with Britney Spears. and Lindsey Lohan. and Jamie Spears. and Mary Kate Olsen. and Ashley Olsen. and many more. STICK TO SCHOOL CHILDREN, then decide what you want to do. it's both sad and pathetic to think that it's possible these kid's parents wanted them to do this or forced them to do this.

another thing. they're not professional yet. they need to mature. watching the mv, it's obvious some of them have no idea what in the world they are doing or are supposed to be doing. if it isn't that - their hand and feet coordination are off. they look lost to me. :/ (the little girl just seems to be standing in the middle of nowhere half the time, and they can't even seem to stand still.)

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Just when I thought Kpop couldn't get any YOUNGER. I mean, we already have groups with members as young was 14-16. As if that WASN'T young enough. They decided to make another group full of 6-7 year olds? Great. I think these kids should put their education first. I guess its nice that they're making their parents some extra dough, but with all the hours of training to be a singer, its difficult to focus on education. Just look at SNSD. Alot of them aren't even attending college. Well enough of me preaching about education.

I agree that sex sells, but these new girls groups need to leave the sexiness to those who can actually pull off the look. I don't mind seeing hyori, chae yeon, etc be sexy but when little 15-16 year olds are in booty shorts shaking their butts like no tomorrow then there is a problem. "So hot" makes me want to rip of ears out and poke my eyes out at the same time.

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JiHwan Says: sex sells

I agreed too, but those ajjushi/ahjuma are such a pervert to put this children in a category sexy. ( the way they wink the eyes, or the dance, the outfit)

so Wrong.. EUW!!!! it's almost like you order a KFC. and after you took the crunchy skin away, there the bare pale meat and then you think of, " mmmmm smexy" >_

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i think this is profoundly tragic, going beyond just pedophilic overtones (or under-, whatever.) they're reinstating the glass ceiling for all women, and starting it early. be sexy for men, compete amongst yourself for male attention...it's the quickest way to make something of yourself!

sorry i can't see anything sweet and wholesome here. a while back over 800 korean men (including professors, white-collar execs, teachers) were caugh having bought sex from a teen abducted by her relatives and kept as sex slave! women and children's rights are awful enough as it is...this is extra nails in the coffin.

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I couldn't agree more. I love it when there are cool groups like Kids Inc. used to be for kids by kids, but it is very troubling when you have kids acting like adults. That's a terrible message and nothing is cute about it. There should never be any hint of innuendo when it comes to these pre-teen groups IMHO. It's bad enough kids look up to trashy ADULT stars but when they can look "up" to their trashy PEERS, that's a whole new level of scary and somebody (ies)'s parents need to be held accountable.

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Is this all merely a reflection of our economic situation? I mean, when the economy is down, our morals go down the toilets also? Do anything to make money, and if it means prostituting our youngsters by using them in sexy situations, then by all means, let's do it. Hey, a man's got to do what a man's got to do to put food on the table. When I see these young people whether Sweety's ages, young teens and even those in their late teens being sold to the public, I just could stick my finger down my throat and throw up on all the people behind them making the big bucks off of these kids. Our world seems to be getting sicker and sicker with more kidnappings, molestations, sexual predators, deviant behavior,ad nauseum and I just wonder how in the heck is our world going to get a handle on this and put our society's morals back on the right track.

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Nothing to really add here (can't wait for The Popseoul News Network to pick this one up . . . ) Just wanted to share a oldie but goodie, starring kids . . .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Llj6Kx_ZKlw

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My jaw dropped when I saw this!

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that's just somewhere the entertainment industry should never go.

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It is very sad indeed to see kids being used this way. I can't believe that their parents allowed them to be"debuting" like that. Is fame all they care about? What about a carefree and innocent childhood. Come on, they are way too young, 6-year-old???
It's not that I don't approve of talent being discovered early but I doubt that being in this kind of group have much to do with their talent in singing though!!

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That's just wrong. I totally agree with all you said. They look like they are trying to be adult, and that's never a good thing. The boy and the 6 year old look so out of place...

how can their parents allow this? And what about school and stuff? You know, at that age they are just growing up- they are way to young to be put into the music industry (and probably overworked).

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you know i don't question how petifiles (or how ever you spell it) came to be...
cause this answers it... if you put little kids it situations like this lonely adults you know get ideas...
it still disturbs me but these people should make their kids go to school instead of putting them out there like this!

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This is the reason we have so many freaking child molesters..people need to stop portraying kids as anything more than kids....where the hell are the parents...busy spending their kids money.

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