[10] On KPOP and Breaking Stereotypes (Part 2/2)

I return, presenting you with an issue of talent. Consider it this way, where does the bashing of groups/idols begin?

I do believe that it already begins once a group debuts, and their talent proves a threat to existing Top dogs. As far as we know, Korean artists absolutely hold respect for each other, whether they are seniors, or have seniors in the industry. There is no sense of hostility in the sense that all artists are on good terms with each other outside of Music Charts, shows, Net Searches. My point here is that only their songs compete for the top, not really the artists. There is no clash among artists who debut at the same time, who promote at the same time, who contend at the same time.

So where does the hate emanate from? In theory, and utter reality, it comes from the fans. Myself included, fans have upsurges of jealousy, insecurity and defense regarding their fandoms and/or biases. If you were open-minded enough to understand that it begins with insecurity, you would see how utterly pointless it is. The KPOP idols themselves don’t feel any hostility towards each other. I’m not saying jealousy is out of the question – yes, all humans are capable of feeling jealousy, and I wouldn’t neglect that fact. They would feel jealous, but think about it: Idol stars use the jealousy to work even harder, thus a fine indicator of perseverance and dedication to their craft and career.

I find it peculiar that despite firsthand statements from KPOP idols themselves to fans that they shouldn’t exhibit anger or hate towards their (the idols’) colleagues, -seniors and juniors alike- they do not heed and continue to nurture their dislike towards a group or an individual.

Now, this is where the stereotyping happens: The community of KPOP fans attribute fans of a certain fandom with [a] certain personality/personalities. Hence, stereotyping fans of _____ as defensive, overreactive and delusional. We’ve all heard about this, Even newbie fans get dragged into this due to their lack of knowledge about respective fandoms, “rules”, principles and tradition we’ve been abiding by ever since.

Who’s to blame? We all want an organized community, compartmentalized according to bias group (or whatever category it is) in order for us to be able to distinguish one from the other. But this organization of the populace however, holds no strong ground, no solid foundation; We’ve no standard for what this group should be, or what this fanbase should do. A factor is that the diversity of the fans affect perception and perspective. Culturally, Socially, everything, our upbringing affects how we react to our fandoms and fans who are unruly. We’ve yet to understand each other, but know for sure that in a fandom, there is -more or less- a group of people who agree upon something. There are internal conflicts between fans of the same fandom, and that percentage is also a factor for stereotyping. For a fandom to be clean-slate, cooperative members must be present. This is quite a rare cse, but there are fandoms who exhibit such qualities.

It may never be avoided – the stereotyping and the “fan wars”, because there will always be those unruly fans, unreasonable and uncontrollable. That may be how they portray their affection, with seemingly primal instincts, but you can’t (as a member of the KPOP community) force them to change. It all boils down to respect, and hopefully, at least this will be something that will remain all throughout the development of fans.

I want to expound on my intro, and that I will do in the next post.

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