Amidst the current crackdown on the entertainment industry within China (the Qinglang movement), Cai Xukun made headlines for his album sales. Lots of Weibo Influencers stepped out to point out how his new album was sold “illegally”. The move comes after the Chinese government denounced many of the actions previously commonly seen in the industry, including buying hundreds of albums to boost artists’ sales.
A Brief Introduction
Pre-sales for Unknown went live four months ago, and a selection of songs were already made available then. However, with the crackdown on the entertainment industry, netizens noted that not all the songs were released despite having bought the “full” album.
In response, Cai Xukun‘s studio released five songs at once on the same day. As a note, this rarely happens – usually, artists would release songs one-by-one.
Poll: Thoughts on Cai Xukun’s release?
What are your thoughts on the release method of Cai Xukun’s new album?
[+34,000] It’s unfair to netizens, it’s illegal
[+24,000] I’m happy to spend money to buy an album
[+18,000] Just here for the gossip
[+2168] I have thoughts, see you in the comments
Weibo Hot Search: Lawyers Say It’s Illegal
A Chinese newspaper, Jimu, was particularly vocal in denouncing the album. They pointed out that despite having 80 million sales, 4 months later, there were still 6 unreleased songs in the album. In the morning of the 30th, 5 of these songs were quickly released.
The Jimu journalist pointed out that of these 5 songs, one was an edited version of a song released while Xukun was in Nine Percent, another was an interlude of 48 seconds of pure music, and two other songs were only over 2 minutes. It seems that the newspaper’s problem is with selling the whole album, but not releasing all the songs.
[+121,000] This is what should be regulated. None of his works are popular, they just rely on the Internet.
[+62,000] The public sentiment has been controlled well, all the major Weibo Influencers are silent
[+54,000] How come a song not even lasting a minute can be sold?
[+37,000] Suggest a proper investigation. If you didn’t bring his name out, we weren’t even sure how long we’d have to wait
[+19,000] No wonder everyone wants to be a celebrity, isn’t this just raising money?
[+19,000] Got it got it, you just want to bring him down, got it
[+13,000] Does this deserve being a singer? This title is worthless
[+11,000] “Unknown” is really an unknown album, I don’t know these actions
[+9271] People who release songs like this aren’t rare, how come you have to laugh at him
Cai Xukun’s Studio Apologises
In the afternoon of the 31st, Cai Xukun’s studio made the hot search again, this time for their apology.
In the letter, they thank fans for the support, and apologise for not telling netizens the exact dates when the whole album would be made available. They also express that they will follow the correct album-selling route more closely in the future, protecting consumers’ rights. In the end, they encourage everyone to follow the Qinglang movement and create a healthy entertainment culture.
[+25,000] Understood 👌 By the way, thank you. The songs are really nice. They’re really healing. Recently, it’s rained a lot, so I was a little upset.
[+19,000] Definitely understand. Thank you for the guidance, IKUNs will follow!
[+18,000] You already said at the start that it’d be released in batches. Also, I like all the songs in Unknown. Listening to the whole album is really enjoyable!
[+15,000] The fans have never encouraged unreasonable behaviour. Let’s improve together. The album’s really nice.
[+10,000] I support this
Already Told Fans That Songs Would Be Released Later?
Fans of Cai Xukun further circulated the following:
In the image, the orange line reads: “Other than the songs that have been uploaded, other songs will be released in turn, please look forward to it.”
Fans point out that this was already released with the album, and in their official Weibo posts, the studio also wrote that the first round of songs would be released on the 13th of April.
Thoughts on Cai Xukun’s Studio’s Apology
In response to a Weibo Influencer’s post  about the apology, netizens react:
[+2567] This apology made fans’ hearts hurt, so they would go and buy more albums, and the studio would get more money
[+1588] This isn’t good, wasn’t it the staff who started off by spending over a hundred thousand?
[+1268] Yeah, but. It has nothing to do with the money, but the songs are a little too lame.
[+927] I think his songs are quite nice. One of the English songs are very warm, and I think another song is also quite good. It feels really sad.
[+586] His <Lover> is very good
[+337] I looked, and it does actually say that the songs won’t be released at once. It just might not have been clear enough 😂
What do you think on the whole matter? Should Xukun’s studio have had to put all the songs out and then apologise? What are your thoughts on how album purchasing and song release should be done? Let us know in the comments section below!