Tzuyang, a South Korean YouTuber, and comedian Kim Ji Young faced criticism for displaying racial insensitivity and ridiculing Filipinos in a recent vlog.
In a video named “Vietnamese Restaurant Where You Eat In Line,” Tzuyang collaborated with Kim Ji Young, who portrayed the character Ni Tong, a subscriber from the Philippines. Ni Tong is a persona crafted around Filipino stereotypes prevalent in Korea.
Ji Young is then shown speaking in broken Korean and mocking Filipino accents.
“Hello. I am Ni Tong, and I have a beautiful smile. I was formerly the wife of a farmer, but now I am a comedian,” she said.
Korean and global viewers expressed their dissatisfaction with Tzuyang’s vlog, emphasizing that making fun of Filipino accents and relying on stereotypical narratives is inappropriate and should not be entertained.
“As a Filipino, I feel so proud at first when I saw that she is a Filipino. But the moment that it is revealed that she is not and she is copying or mocking Filipino’s accent, it made me bothered. Our accent is not a joke and should never be laughed at. Hope you all understand my point, thank you,” a comment said.
Another viewer said, “So you got a ‘comedian’ who’s not even Filipino to pretend to be Filipino and acts out the harmful Filipino stereotypes such as the accent when speaking Korean, coming to Korea to ‘seduce men and get married’ because of Kdramas. I don’t understand why you guys think this is funny.”
At the time of this composition, Tzuyang has made the video private and issued an apology in three languages, which includes Tagalog.
The vlogger expressed her “sincere apologies to our Filipino viewers and subscribers for any concerns caused by the video uploaded on January 28th with a Korean comedian.”
She expressed deep respect for the Philippines and acknowledged that she was unaware that the vlog could potentially cause harm.
“I hold great respect for the Philippines and feel genuinely grateful to the many viewers in the Philippines who enjoy my videos. However, it was a huge oversight on my part not to realize that the content we produced might unintentionally cause emotional pain, which was not our intention,” Tzuyang said.
“I sincerely apologize once again to the Filipino viewers and to anyone who felt uncomfortable watching the video,” she added. “I will carefully heed the criticisms and comments from our viewers and will make every effort to be thoughtful and attentive when creating content in the future.”
Tzuyang is a well-known YouTuber, primarily recognized for mukbang, which involves eating videos. Presently, she boasts a subscriber count of 9.29 million.