Former entertainment reporter Lee Jin-ho has now weighed in the issue over Free Zia (Song Ji-ah) wearing fake luxurious items. The Youtuber stresses the controversy surrounding the "Single's Inferno" star is far deeper than she thought after intentionally deceiving her fans.
Free Zia already issued a letter of apology, admitting her signature clothes were faked. She reasoned she was not aware of the copyright infringement. With that being said, Lee Jin-ho looked into the possibility that the social media star did not know that the products she wore were imitations.
An entertainment stylist, who has been working in the industry for a decade, he interviewed revealed it was unnecessary to show luxury brands on TV unless they were sponsored, AllKpop noted. But with the increasing popularity of reality shows, even the non-celebrity contenders were trying to show off their signature clothing brand.
The stylist stressed imitation items are illegal, so it is a serious issue if they appear on TV. He also said it is easy to differentiate the fake items, so the individual wearing these counterfeit products may be aware of it--unless the management agency gives it.
Fake items on the market are categorized as S-class and A-class. But Lee Jin-ho believed Free Zia's imitation products were "poorly re-created" and not part of these categories.
So, many netizens are angry that Free Zia has underestimated them for wearing and reviewing fake items on her YouTube channel. Meanwhile, in another interview with the leading industry insiders by Sports Chosun, via Koreaboo, they believed the reality star's reason to do the extreme measure she did was to keep a "certain image of her brand."
The lack of willingness from the designer brands to collaborate with the social media influencers might also be at play. With Free Zia's growing popularity, she might have felt the pressure to keep featuring new social media content.
For someone like her, it was hard to be sponsored by ultra-luxury products like Chanel. With its sky-high price, it was also difficult for her to buy every item it had herself.
So, the only reason they saw that she donned fake items was she might have been "carried away." Free Zia had made an image for herself as part of the high fashion.
As some doubt the legitimacy of her attires, some netizens compared her signature clothes to that of BLACKPINK's Jennie, who is known as a human Chanel. She would usually post images of herself wearing designer brands to promote a lavish lifestyle.
However, after the fake Chanel controversy broke, this particular topic had gained mixed reactions from everyone. Sure, many were angered at the issue, but some said it was something that many had done before, not just Free Zia.