In the previous post was the results of the investigation. This post will explain the scandals.
Shimada Rena was seen as one of the aces of NMB48's 2nd generation girls, and the hopeful captain of Team M whenever it will be formed. It all changed when some guys on 2ch found what was her old personal blog. Apparently she had a boyfriend named Nobu before she joined NMB48. In fact, they were together until she got into the group.
One of the entries on her blog, dated September 23rd 2010, said “We’re from the same school and in the same club. We’re a teammate x manager couple (*^^*). We get along great together and I hope we can go to the festival together next year as well!”
There were loads of purikuras of Shimarena with Nobu, most of them having fun like any normal couple. Fans asked NMB48's management if those pictures were real and not so long later, they announced that Shimarena herself had admitted that it was her in those pictures. But because the blog entries were made before she entered NMB48, they have allowed it to pass. They also said that Shimarena joined NMB48 to find her dreams, and asked for fans to continue to support her.
But it wasn't over that easily. More purikuras were found and one of them, contained a picture of the 2 kissing. The boyfriend's blog was also found, and included some more incriminating entries, some of them mentions him and Shimarena smoking and drinking. The legal smoking and drinking age in Japan is 20. So they broke the law. Remember Kago Ai? Not only that. One entry said of his friends giving him a condom to celebrate his anniversary with Shimarena. And that post was made AFTER her audition.
NMB48 management made another announcement, explaining that those entries on Nobu's blog were fake and that Shimarena swore that she did not date him after she auditioned. Once again, they asked for the fan's forgiveness and asked them to continue supporting her dreams.
While her having a boyfriend and possibly breaking the law was bad, what pissed off the wotas the most is the previously in AKB48, there were Kenkyuuseis who were fired for less incriminating purikuras than her. One example is Ishiguro Atsuki. She too was a victim of a purikura scandal. However, her purikuras were taken much much earlier before auditioning for AKB. There was no mention of her smoking, drinking, or anything bad. But she got fired. Many others too, including then team B member Kikuchi Ayaka. I think it's unfair.
Then at NMB48's 2nd generation Shonichi, Shimarena publicly apologized to the audience for her misbehavior. But 1 guy stood up and shouted "Are you going to tolerate this when girls have been fired for stuff like this before?”. There was also mention of him throwing money around. He was removed and banned from the theater by the staff of course, but he made his point.
2 days after the incident at NMB48's 2nd gen shonichi, 2ch found the mixi account of AKB48 Team 4's Mori Anna's classmate which eventually led them to her own personal blog she used before joining AKB. Apparently Nanchan dated quite a number of guys in middle school and had a boyfriend for 2 years (their anniversary was June 2009 while 9th gen started on September 2009). She broke up long before joining AKB48, but there is hint that they kept in touch for a while after.
Somehow, Nanchan's blog led the wotas to the blog of Oba Mina, captain of the newly formed Team 4. There were entries of her drinking, dating a guy for at least 5 months (before joining AKB48), and even Enjo Kosai. Along with some interesting purikura photos like the one below.
All the while, more and more purikuras of other members of the 48 family were still being found. Other victims include but are not limited to: NMB48 team N's captain Yamamoto Sayaka and AKB48 Team K's Matsui Sakiko.
Eventually, AKB48's management stepped in and Theater manager Togasaki tweeted that the management is verifying all the accusations. He also said in the official blog his opinion on the matter, saying he thinks that anything before the girls joined he will dismiss, unless they have broken the law. Well Togasaki doesn't have much of a say in the decision of the management.
All these has split the foreign fans into 2 groups.
The right side, which supported the idol no-dating rule (which is in their contract by the way) that the idols should not date, they broke the rule, they tarnished the group's image, they need to be fired to set an example to the rest of the group.
And the left side, saying that it's in the past, the idol rule is stupid this is the 21st century, big deal if they have a boyfriend, "awwwww that's so sweet".
Personally, I side with the rights. It doesn't really matter for me if they have a boyfriend or not, but if they get caught then there are consequences. Again, the no-dating rule is in their contract. And really, they have to set an example. My biggest concern is that if they don't set an example, the other girls might think "oh hey she got a boyfriend and she didn't get fired why can't I" or something like that and just say "oh that was before I joined" or "oh I didn't drink" if she was found out. We might never know if she was telling the truth or not.