Here’s What We Know About BLACKPINK’s Meet-and-Greet Drama So Far

South Korean girl group BLACKPINK held a meet and greet last June 6, Thursday, in Manila, marking the group’s return to the country after a very successful concert held in February earlier this year. The meet and greet event was organized by an e-commerce site which the group endorses.

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However, even before the meet and greet started, a hashtag was started by Blinks (Blackpink fans) who felt like the shopping site has “scammed” them.

Here’s how it went down: the site posted mechanics that state that the top 40 spenders during a specified date would be qualified for a ticket as well as signed goods from the members of the girl group. However, they changed these mechanics the day before the actual event, automatically disqualifying a lot of fans.

A lot of fans spent tens of thousands of pesos just to see Blackpink at this event, some of their expenditures allegedly reaching up to Php 200k! However, not all of these big spenders were given tickets to the event, much to their confusion. Moreover, those who did receive tickets later found messages indicating that there had been a “system error” and that their tickets were non-existent.

When Blinks arrived at the venue, they found a separate list of tickets for celebrities and internet influencers, which only put more fuel on the fire. The fans have concluded that the tickets they were denied were given to these big names for free, angering the fandom even more.

This rage was taken to Twitter, where the international community of Blinks rallied behind their Filipino co-fans to trend the hashtag #SHOPEESCAM. Soon, screenshots were being posted and personal accounts about the ordeal were being shared. The hashtag topped the local trends list and continues to be filled with more “receipts” about the disorganization of the event.

(ALSO READ: WATCH: Crowds go crazy over BLACKPINK’s Coachella performance)

At around 1 AM that very night, the shopping site posted a statement on their official social media accounts apologizing for the way the meet and greet went. They state that they are reaching out to those affected by the issue and are working hard to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

On Friday the following day, CNN Philippines reported that the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is stepping in and has begun investigating the issue involving mechanics changes. Trade Secretary Mon Lopez told the news outlet that they’re doing their best to protect the customers who participated in the promo.  He explained that promos are supposed to be registered with DTI for the safeguard of customers.

Lopez said that DTI is currently corresponding with the shopping site. Results of the investigation can be released as early as a week. We’ll keep an eye out as the story develops.

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