Sat. Jul 20th, 2024

6 Things Only A K-pop Fan Can Understand

There are so many great things about being a K-pop fan! From an amazing sense of belonging when you are part of a global fandom to the feeling of pride you get when you watch your ultimate bias group win their first award, there are unique things that it seems only a K-pop fan can understand. We know that being a K-pop fan can often take a lot of our time, money, and dedication. In fact, we all know where too much of our money goes to at times, and this author is just saying not to worry about all of that! Being a K-pop fan is worth it and provides us all with such happiness and friendship that it’s a great investment, even if other people don’t understand our obsession at times. As such, let’s look at six things only a K-pop fan can understand!

1. Making Friends Worldwide

One of the best thing about being a K-pop fan is having friends worldwide, especially when you are active on social medias sites like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Having a fandom and “mutuals” you can talk to and share a lot of similarities with— where no one will judge since all of you understand each other— means you can even gain some besties in real life!

2. The K-pop Concert Experience


K-pop concerts often mean having a better concert experience than other artists worldwide. Especially when the concert is for a group, there are so many various segments and even special stages from the members as soloists and units as well. When it’s a large venue especially, there is nothing that beats the magic of a giant crowd all wearing the fandom colors and merch of your favorite group, waving lightsticks and singing along to your favorite songs! There is just something special about K-pop concerts that are on another level!

3. K-pop Albums

Media: YG Entertainment

K-pop albums are not the typical albums from most global artists who only include a CD and small lyrics booklet. Instead, K-pop albums are much like collectibles themselves. Their packaging is really extra, with every comeback meaning new ways for the group to provide a special album for their fans. Apart from the CD (which is often special itself), there are usually photobooks with pages of magazine-worthy photos, one or two photo cards, and a lyrics book. However, these days, it’s not unusual to have stickers, polaroid cards, folded posters, standees/member cut-outs, post cards. and more. Past groups have even included collectible comic book pages, holographic photo cards, giant postcards to frame, and more unique materials. Some groups even include autographed photos in some of their albums for lucky fans! Opening albums is so special that entire YouTube channels are even dedicated to filming the process, gaining thousands of views per video.

4. Learning The Korean Language

Media: SteemKr

Getting into K-pop inevitably means you will begin to learn some of the Korean language. For many people, this is the starting point of what makes them become more interested in learning Korean. After hearing the lyrics for their favorite song, most fans will end up searching for the English translations where they see the Korean and English lyrics side-by-side. Other times, fans end up watching variety shows or Korean drama where their biases appear. Little by little, fans are exposed to the Korean language and begin to pick up a few words. Many of these fans then end up getting inspired to take Korean classes, study on their own, or even move to Korea as an exchange student to study the language! K-pop may just start as an interest in music, but challenging yourself to learn another language is always a great thing!

5. K-pop Lightsticks

Media: Unknown

Let’s be honest! The K-pop industry basically wrote the book when it comes to lightsticks. They have the best concepts and functions for lightsticks. K-pop lighsticks have come a long way from simple glowsticks that fans hold up at concerts. They can now change colors through bluetooth where it is controlled by the staff during concerts. In addition, the design for each lightstick is also something special for each fandom as it represents the colors and the logo of the group you stan. In fact, many lighsticks these days are even designed with the assistance of fans or chosen by votes from the fans, making the lighstick design even more special.

6. Learning About Korean Culture

Media: Discover MNL

Much like learning the Korean language, you will find yourself learning a lot about Korean culture once you become a K-pop fan. After watching a lot of videos or hearing your bias group explain about their own culture, holidays, traditions, and more, sometimes unconsciously you will find yourself learning more about some of the cultures that Koreans have. You will even start learning things about the way they behave and live. For example, you will almost immediately learn that Korean bow to greet someone, especially those of older age. You will also learn about how they use two hands while shaking hands or pouring drinks for respected people or seniors. In addition, you will become very familiar with food you might now have known about before, such as soju and samgyeopsal. Even when watching variety shows or listening to your idols talk about certain holidays they celebrate, you will also begin learn more about Korean history and traditions. Isn’t it great how you can broaden your horizons all by first becoming interested in a music genre?

All of your interests that stem from becoming a K-pop fan don’t make you a “Koreaboo” and you shouldn’t be ashamed of you who are or what music you listen to! It just makes you someone who was open to trying new music, then learning new things about another country and its people. Maybe other people might not understand your interest in K-pop, but the best thing is that other K-pop fans do! So, go chat with those mutuals and eat those Korean snacks you bought last time at the market. Watch your favorite K-pop videos or order that new album, because your interests and tastes are exactly what makes you so special and unique. After all, money can’t buy happiness, so if these things make you happy… embrace it!

Which of the things on this list do you relate to most of all? What else would you add to the list? Let us know your thoughts by tweeting to us @whatthekpop1!

Yumi is an avid fan of Korean culture and a multi-fandom fan of K-pop groups since 2014. Watching Korean dramas has been her hobby ever since! 

Media: As Credited
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