About POP!

POP! is INQUIRER.net’s premier pop culture channel, delivering the latest news in the realm of pop culture, internet culture, social issues, and everything fun, weird, and wired. It is also home to POP! Sessions and POP! Hangout,
OG online entertainment programs in the
Philippines (streaming since 2015).

As the go-to destination for all things ‘in the now’, POP! features and curates the best relevant content for its young audience. It is also a strong advocate of fairness and truth in storytelling.

POP! is operated by INQUIRER.net’s award-winning native advertising team, BrandRoom.

Contact Us

Email us at [email protected]


MRP Building, Mola Corner Pasong Tirad Streets, Brgy La Paz, Makati City

Girl in a jacket

Internet reacts to producer Ahn Joon-young’s rehiring following prison term

TL:DR: Obviously, nobody was happy with this news. Following his indictment for manipulating the votes of the idol-trainee survival series titled, “Produce 101,” Producing Director (PD) Ahn Joon-young was reported by YTN Star to have returned to his position in Mnet and CJ ENM.

An official from Mnet confirmed the news saying, “It is true that PD Ahn Joon-young has rejoined [the company] again after resigning from the company last year. As for the specific timing, it is difficult to confirm.”

In 2019, Ahn Joon-young was charged with scamming, obstruction of business, accepting bribes, and more during his time as the head producer for the “Produce 101” series. During the legal proceedings, it was found out that Ahn had manipulated the votes of all of the “Produce 101” seasons.

In May 2020, the court sentenced Ahn Joon-young with a 2-year prison sentence and a fine of ₩37 million. He later on appealed the sentence but was found guilty on both trials. Ahn had admitted to the charges at the time, but said that it was due to pressure about the program’s success and ratings, not by personal greed. Ahn Joon-young was released from prison in November 2021.

As soon as news of his rehiring and return to the music business division of Mnet went viral, online users weren’t pleased to hear all about it.


On April 5, 2023, CJ ENM (the parent company of Mnet Korea), released an official apology for rehiring PD Ahn Joon-young.

The statement is as reads:

“We sincerely apologize to all those who were disappointed with Mnet’s hiring for an experienced employee position.
The decision to hire PD Ahn Joon Young was an inexcusable wrong decision. The decision to give him a second chance to make up for his past wrongs did not meet society’s expectations regarding fairness.

We would like to express our apologies to the many people who love Mnet and to the executives and staff members who have been silently working hard with the pride of being [part of] the best company in the creative content industry.

Over the past four years, our company established a voting management system that is separate from production in order to improve the fairness of audition programs. In addition, we have increased the transparency of the production process by strengthening the monitoring system and operating the Viewer Committee.
Nevertheless, we humbly accept what we were lacking in relation to the recruitment standards and will promptly supplement the problems revealed this time to prevent similar incidents from recurring.

We ask for your continued encouragement and reprimand for our efforts to achieve fairness and restore trust. We deeply reflect on the fact that we have disappointed many people through this incident and once again bow our heads in apology.”

Once again, online users had their opinions on the matter which can be summed up in just a few words: “Just kick him out.”


Other POP! stories that you might like:

‘Bubuka Ang Bulaklak’ and other fun memes born out of Jisoo’s first solo single

IVE receives an ‘All-Kill certification’ for their B-side track ‘Kitsch’

AGUST D to finally release his solo album ‘D-DAY’ in April

The cause of death of Fleetwood Mac’s Christine McVie has been revealed

Filipinos online deal with nostalgia as iconic web forum PinoyExchange bids goodbye

Here’s some bad news: People on the internet just love bad news

About Author

Senior Writer

Related Stories

Popping on POP!