Specifically, netizens questioned whether or not the idol was smoking in a designated smoking area. According to some, smoking on the streets in Japan is generally illegal and punishable by a fine, unless the area is designated for smokers.
Some argued, "If it's illegal, he should pay the consequences", "I wish the government would ban smoking on the streets in our country too", "I heard that Japanese people who smoke have to carry portable ashtrays around because the laws became so strict", "I don't know about any other country, but if it's Japan, Koreans who frequently visit Japan should be informed about the country's laws and practices", "Why is he the one who always causes trouble in NCT?", "If that really is a non-smoking area, let him have it because cigarette smoke is the worst", etc.
While others said, "I went to Japan recently and people were smoking everywhere in the streets. Why are people pretending like it's such a smoke-free country all of a sudden?", "When I went to Japan in 2018, people could smoke inside bars", "Hurry up and sue these sasaengs who keep following NCT around, SM", "It's too blurry for me to even tell if he's actually smoking", "But if it actually is a designated area, there's no problem here", and more.
Meanwhile, Taeyong recently wrapped up the Seoul installment of NCT 127's 3rd world tour, 'The Unity', last month.