Gearing up for Cloud 9th.

This post is for readers who depend on this blog for Rain/The Cloud news.

As the date of Rain’s official comeback in Korea is getting near, The Cloud has released a few announcements regarding the opening of Cloud 9th. The notice (in Korean) is posted at Rain’s Official Website. Translations in various languages are posted at the Cloud Community Board (you must be registered at rain-cloud to view the thread).

For those who are not members of rain-cloud, I am posting the English translation by huhuhuhu here. My own commentary as regards the new provisions are posted in blue font.

[Eng] Notice on operating system changes regarding the 9th Cloud Fan Club

We wish to inform all clouds about the following:

As we are about to start recruitment of 9th Cloud, we want to inform you about the changes in the system of the fan club. The key points are listed below with additional explanation as necessary. Please read this carefully and we hope to have your understanding on the changes.

Existing 8th Cloud benefits (contents as listed in the notice of 8th Cloud recruitment)

1.  Provision of official fan club membership card.
2.  Priority application for fan meeting and admission
3.  Upgrade to full regular member at the Cloud official fan site with provision of differentiated information.
4.  Priority entrance at public broadcast program (as agreed with the organizer)
5.  Benefit of fan club seats at concerts etc.

The differences in fan club benefits on the forthcoming 9th Cloud as compared to 8th Cloud:

1. Change of structure from Executive to Supporters
2. Cheaper membership fee
3. Provision of official fan club membership card only. (we plan to create shopping channels for the purchase of a great variety of fan club goods)
4. Paid entrance fee for fan meeting
5. No guarantee on fan club seats for paid concerts.

The same benefits as with 8th Cloud:

1. Priority application for fan meeting and priority admission.
2. Upgrade to full regular member at the Cloud official fan site with provision of differentiated information.
3. Priority entrance at public broadcast program (as agreed with the organizer)
4. Provision of official fan club membership card.
5. Operation support from the company to the official web site.

Explanation regarding the difference in the benefits for 9th Cloud..

1. Change of structure from Executive to Supporters

- As we all know there had been situations when nobody volunteered to be an Executive. Our judgement is that even with 1 or 2 Executives, they cannot conduct their duties smoothly without the help of supporters. That’s why we change the structure to supporters based.

I don’t know why nobody would volunteer on the Korean side, but I think I speak for the rest of the Overseas Clouds (particularly the non-Korean and Japanese) when I say that there are many who are willing to volunteer as Supporters.  The problem is that Supporters are REQUIRED to know Korean.   :neutral:  For an artist who takes pride in being a World Star with an international fanbase, it baffles me that Rain and his people still insist that it’s his international fanbase who must adjust to them instead of them adjusting to us.  All other Korean stars who are aspiring for international careers have already made their adjustments by hiring people who can communicate with their non-Korean fans.  Rain, the supposed ‘pioneer’ World Star, still hasn’t adjusted to the times.

Yes, I know huhuhuhu is already there.  But she’s just one person and she would need all the help she could get.

2. Cheaper membership fee.

3. Provision of official fan club membership card only

- The major expenses of the existing fan club membership fee can be divided into the following: fan meeting, fan club souvenirs, shipping of fan club souvenirs, support and gifts for Rain. Unexpectedly the shipping of fan club souvenirs occupied a big portion of the expenses. In the case of overseas fans, the cost of shipping is even greater than the cost of the souvenirs themselves. As such, the membership fee becomes high (especially to overseas fans). Fans will either think twice in joining or simply give up. We also consider whether we should conduct a fan club without membership fee, but that will mean we don’t even have a very basic means of differentiating members. Not only is it hard for clouds to build their trust with each other, it is also impossible to plan any activity. Therefore we decide on the following change. The membership fee will be cheaper than the existing fee. (The exact amount will be discussed). When fans join the fan club as paid members, they can upgrade as full members at the official website, and membership cards will be sent to them as identity. We will not provide cloud souvenirs but we plan to offer a variety of fan club goods for sale via the official website. This means we will reduce the burden of joining fees and the operational funds of the Cloud will also be reduced. The relevant internal expenses on the purchase of cloud souvenirs, the attendance of fan meeting, and external expense on donations in the name of the Cloud will be allocated back to individuals. This is the change we plan to make.

Actually, the reason why more and more fans have declined to register for paid membership is not because of the high shipping fees.  Fans are willing to spend.  The decline is mainly because (1) the registration process is too tedious, complicated and more expensive, especially for non-Korean and Japanese fans; and (2)  Overseas Clouds are simply not getting the full benefits of being an officially registered Cloud, as compared with the K- and especially the J-Clouds.  These issues have been brought up from as early as Cloud 6th.  I’m surprised – or more accurately, bothered – that the Executive Board are still not recognizing these issues as the real cause for the decline in membership numbers.

4. Paid entrance fee for fan meeting

In the same context as 2 and 3 above, we will change free admission of fan meeting to paid admission for future fan meetings.

5. No guarantee on fan club seats for paid concerts

There will be no guarantee on designated fan club seats for paid concerts. It is not too much to say that priority application for fan club seats at paid concerts would have the greatest impact in deciding whether to join a fan club and would be considered as the greatest benefit.

The fan club, through the company, has always obtained good designated seats for the Cloud members to enable them to see Rain closely. One of the reasons for such good fan clubs seats to come by is that externally it is seen as a benefit for fan club member, but internally to the seller (and the organizer) it means even though they are the most expensive seats, many seats can be sold easily without hassle within a short period of time. This is one of the main reasons for fan club seats to come by. It’s a pity that recently we see that the sale of fan club seats has reduced significantly and the process proved to be very cumbersome (telephone protests about the position of fan club seats during the nationwide concert tour before enlistment etc.) The reality is that it becomes meaningless to continue offering fan club seats. Also, there are circumstances where people who are not members protesting that they are not able to purchase VIP seats. To the investors and organizers, other than providing a good performance they also want to make profit. While it seems a matter of course to enjoy this benefit, we have to inform you with difficulty that due to the above reasons, the reality is it will be hard to have fan club seats like what used to be.

I know I did not watch as many concerts as some fans did, but other than my first Rain concert (Rainy Day Hong Kong, when I wasn’t an official Cloud yet), I don’t remember getting any “guaranteed fan club seats for paid concerts” as benefit for being a registered Cloud.  I had to work my own way to get those seats.  So yeah, it’s not like we’re going to miss anything by removing this benefit…  :rolleyes:

• We also wish to inform you that as what is being done currently, we will continue to receive help from supporters. Funds to support Rain will be raised according to the nature of the events and accounts will continue to be provided.

• The cost of running the official Cloud website will be sponsored by the company.

As it should’ve always been.

These are the changes in the structure we wish to inform you. It’s a long one.

We believe it is possible that many of you will see shortcomings, feel bad or bitter. However our judgement is that it is difficult to keep on maintaining and operating the fan club like it’s current state. The fan club has many years of history. Just as conditions and environment have changed, the fan club also has to adapt and be flexible to changes. We hope to have your great understanding and support.


Confusing news is confusing.

Breaking news from Yonhap: Seven celebrity soldiers sent to military prison for scandalous outing

SEOUL, July 25 (Yonhap) — Seven celebrity soldiers who were caught on camera drinking and entering a massage parlor were sentenced to several days in a military prison for violating the military code of conduct, the defense ministry said Thursday.

The soldiers faced unprecedented tough disciplinary actions after a local TV network last month secretly taped them. They included K-pop star Rain and Seven, drinking together in a private restaurant following a performance for a military event. Two of them were caught by a camera crew in front of a massage parlor late at night after failing to get service.

I’m confused with the way this news item is written. Is Rain included in the seven who were sentenced to military prison? Or he is just included in the ones who were caught on camera? Although logically, if he is included among the ones caught drinking (to be fair, I saw that clip and I don’t remember any part where he was caught drinking), then he is included in the ones sentenced to prison.

But… he’s already been discharged, isn’t he? :shrug:

Did he serve this sentence before his release? :shrug:

Hopefully, more articles that present the facts more thoroughly will clear out the confusion.

Update: Article from enewsworld via Mnet only named three of the total eight soldiers. I believe “Private Choi” is Se7en? No mention of Sargeant Jung.


Update 2:

The Cloud has just announced that the scheduled fan meeting on 3 August 2013 has been cancelled. (link to the announcement on rain-cloud) I think the decision to cancel comes in light of recent events surrounding the issues against entertainment soldiers, for which Rain is still very much part of (I meant the issues, not the entertainment unit).

Many overseas Clouds are now seething mad at The Cloud for cancelling the event so close to the date as they have already booked their air tickets and hotels. Some of them are so mad to the point that an apology is unacceptable, and are demanding that the fan meet should not have been canceled.

And here I am going… what in the world is that??

Look. Weren’t you the same people who said that you will support and understand Rain no matter what? So why can’t you understand this? Rain simply cannot hold a fan meeting at this point because he is still embroiled in this military controversy that he simply cannot possibly show a happy face to his fans without earning further ire of the media and his fellowmen. Is it that difficult to understand? Or you simply don’t care how difficult it’s going to be for him as long as you see him?

Or maybe that’s the point. Some Clouds have permanent blinders that they still think everything is rainbows and unicorns in Rain’s World now that he’s been discharged from the military, so they find it hard to understand why it’s taking too long for Rain to show his face to the world, even to his fans.

Some have surmised that the only reason why Rain and his agency canceled the event is because they’re afraid of the press. Well, it could be true, but goddammit, exactly what do you want the guy to do? Put himself in compromising situations just to please the demanding few?

I do think that it was a mistake to schedule a fan meeting this early, so in a way, The Cloud and whoever from Rain’s side who agreed to this event (what, did you really buy that crap from Cube that Rain was just ‘invited’ to his own fan meeting?) are at fault and should be answerable to the complaints coming from disgruntled fans. But to say that they did this because they don’t care about the Overseas fans… well, I also believe that they really don’t care about the Overseas fans unless they needed some, uh, reinforcements… but on this instance? I don’t think so. If you’ve heard about today’s news – the one that I posted above – you would totally understand why this has to happen.

So Clouds… please do yourself a favor and remove those blinders. Face your fears and read EVERY SINGLE NEWS AND ARTICLE about Rain, whether favorable to him or not. You’ll get a wider perspective and you’ll understand his situation better if you keep an open mind.


Change of plans.

Latest notice from The Cloud:

Information on the day of Rain’s discharge

-A message from the Cloud executive board to overseas fans-

As you know, Rain will be discharged from military service on July 10th as scheduled.
He’ll go out at the west door of the Defense Ministry building at 8:30am on the day.
If there are only a few fans in the place where there are zillions of reporters who are frantic, trying to get their hands on the story on the day, this will be harder on him.
Hope that there are many of you who will participate in the scene of his discharge.

So it turns out, they wanted the fans to welcome him back, after all.

Why am I not surprised at the sudden change of heart? This is SO Cloud. (And SO JYPe/Jtune. Cube’s CEO was once with JYPe, after all.) I really pity those, if any, who decided to forego their plans because they were told that all welcoming activities have been canceled. Us ‘veterans’ know better not to believe anything connected to Rain until it actually happens.


In other news…

[BREAKING] Dispatch caught Won Bin and Lee Na Young (via Nate. The English sites haven’t caught up yet.)

Pardon me while I do the Dance of Joy. :dance: Thank you.

The WBinKyo shippers must be in agony right now. They were waiting for something like this to happen for the longest time, especially when Hye Kyo signed up with Won Bin’s Eden9. Unfortunately, Won Bin chose another Eden9 artist. :cheer: (Do I sound like I’m too happy? Sorry. I can’t help it. :glee: )

Isn’t it an amusing coincidence that nearly all men who were being shipped with Song Hye Kyo ended up dating her close friends? First was Jo In sung with Kim Min Hee, and now, Won Bin with Lee Na Young. Of course, a certain lad was the exception…

I wonder who will end up with Kang Dong Won? :hihihi: I kid! I kid!

[Update] Eden9 denied the relationship, saying the two just have a brother-sister relationship. :neutral: Shades of JJH2.

[Update 2] English version of the news courtesy of AllKpop

[Update 3] Wait… what? :whoa: No major meltdown of K-netizens? They APPROVE of Won Bin dating??? What has the world gone into??? Netizenbuzz article.



From memo-rain:

The Cloud events planned on 10th July are cancelled. The Cloud Executive will issue notice promptly. We want to let overseas fans know asap. If you have planned to be in Seoul on that day you may want to cancel your air flight and hotel booking. Please watch out for the Cloud Executive notice for details.

source : huhuhuhu @ rain-cloud

So… is my psychic right again? That Mr. Jung will not be discharged on July 10? :think: I think this latest issue with Se7en and Sangchu may have an effect on it, since he was included in the group that was caught drinking alcohol while on duty. :neutral: (By the way, it seems a lot of people are not getting it. The point of the issue is not whether these soldiers are human and have the right to drink, be merry and have sex. The point of the issue is that these soldiers have no right to be humans who have the right to drink, be merry and have sex while on official duty.)

Well, I had planned to be in Seoul on that day. Fortunately for me, he is not the only reason why I’m going there.


Real Clouds.

I wasn’t aware that there has been some sort of “issue” among Clouds these days. That’s what happens when I try my very best to stay away from the war zone, so to speak, because frankly speaking, I cannot stand the current situation in this fandom. (There, I said it.)

I learned about this by chance – I mean, I still do have friends who are still very much in the fandom, and I mean REAL friends, not just Facebook friends – and the one thing that irked me are two words:


These two words have been casually thrown out by practically every person calling herself a Cloud.

The thing is, what exactly is a ‘Real Cloud’, and how do we differentiate her from say, a ‘Fake Cloud’?

And if everyone brands herself a ‘Real Cloud’, how can we tell which one is real?


There are two things I learned the hard way from fangirling (in particular, being a fan of Rain because I never experienced this with my other fandoms):

1. Not everyone who calls you a ‘friend’, with the constant ‘sister’ or ‘dear’ in every message, is really your friend. Most of the time, the one who was uber-sweet to you will end up to be the first one to stab you deeply at the back.

2. You will never know who among your fangirl friends is a true friend until your idol is right there in front of you. At which case, it’s every person for him/herself and that’s when you’ll know who will give everything up – including common decency and actual friendship – just to get first dibs on the artist.


However, let me throw this question to everyone (not just Clouds, but anyone who is a fan of someone):

Why would a person even think of throwing away friendship, or personal integrity, in exchange for trying to get the attention of someone who doesn’t know you and would otherwise not care about you if not for the fact that you’re one of the many sources of his livelihood?