Japan Data

Fan Dilemma Over Johnny’s Sexual Abuse Scandal

Society Entertainment Economy Gender and Sex

A survey of fans of stars attached to the Johnny and Associates talent agency found that many will continue to support the company despite this year’s sexual abuse scandal.

One of the most memorable news stories in Japan in 2023 will certainly be the scandal involving sexual abuse by Johnny Kitagawa, the late founder of the powerful Johnny and Associates talent agency.

A nationwide survey of 6,000 people aged from their teens through forties found that 92% of respondents were aware of the scandal, and 45% said that their feelings had changed regarding Johnny’s, which has now been renamed Smile-Up.

Are you aware of the sexual abuse scandal involving the former Johnny and Associates (Smile-Up)?

Has your image of the former Johnny and Associates (Smile-Up) changed?

The 826 respondents who identified as being fans of the former Johnny and Associates were asked if there had been a change in their support for the company. At 46.1%, the majority said there had been “no change,” followed by 21.8% who stated they “support it more.” In contrast, 11.1% said that that they had “stopped being a fan.”

Although 33% said they “feel hopeful” about the future of what was Johnny and Associates, this was not as high as the 40% who “feel concerned.”

Has there been a change in how much you support the company? (Question to fans)

What is your view on the future of Smile-Up (formerly Johnny and Associates)?

(Translated from Japanese. Banner photo: Fan holding signs reading 3 byō mitsumete (stare [at me] for three seconds) and bān shite (burn [up my heart]). © Pixta.)

J-pop sexual abuse Johnny Kitagawa