Article: 'IAC' idols paid $2 USD for attendance... is it worth the injuries?
Source: Ilgan Sports via Nate
One idol group manager said, "Having the fans in the audience makes it more competitive because the fandoms compete against each other for popularity. The match isn't even as important as winning #1 on a music program but because their fans are watching, the idols try their best to run for the #1 medal, sometimes to the point of injury."
Despite the dangerous conditions the idols are working in, they're only paid $300~500 for a day's worth of work. One girl group manager revealed, "The show pays a bit higher than a normal show program would. It depends on how many years since your debut it's been. A group 3-4 years will receive about $500 USD."
That money is then divided between however many members are in the group, averaging their pay to be $2 USD an hour, less than the legal minimum wage of $4.86 USD.
"In reality, the members don't get any of it because it'll just be used towards an expense. It's barely enough to cover the pay for an on-site stylist."
1. [+82, -2] The show's obviously good for getting your name out there with the public. You start the show wondering how in the world there are so many idols you don't know... and then by the end, you're rooting for the ones that shine and come away with a positive image of them. I think it's a faster way to reach the public than with singing a few minutes on a music program.
2. [+89, -15] A level idols rarely ever attend the show. SNSD and 2NE1 have never been on it... The show has basically turned into a promotional venue for rookies now. Jo Kwon and Bora both said they're not going to attend the show anymore because there's no need for them to waste their energy running around... aka they're popular enough now, they don't need the show. KARA totally slacked as well considering they looked like they've never even held a bow before.
3. [+38, -3] Even if their pay is small, they can make double that if they manage to get their name and face known with the CF deals they'll get, more event/performance opportunities... There's a reason to everything. Obviously they wouldn't force themselves to do something with no benefits.