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5 Times K-Pop Stans United to Make Change for Social Justice


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    K-pop fans have emerged as valuable allies in the advancement of current social issues in the U.S.

    For years, followers of multiple fandoms have used their numbers to influence changes within the industry, but pressing matters in the last several weeks have united them to take action beyond their love of music.

    Here are five recent times K-pop fans exercised social activism on the internet:

    1. They deliberately suppressed trending K-pop hashtags to make way for #BlackLivesMatter.

    K-pop-related hashtags almost always dominate trends on Twitter. After George Floyd’s death on May 25, K-pop fans rallied behind the Black Lives Matter movement by posting supportive messages using the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter.

    Blackpink fans, affectionately known as Blinks, especially contributed to the cause. Instead of tweeting about Lady Gaga and the quartet’s “Sour Candy” — which came out three days after Floyd’s death — they came in solidarity with Black Lives.

    2. They flooded the Dallas Police Department with fancams to stop cops from tracking protesters.

    Amid demonstrations against police brutality after Floyd’s death, the Dallas Police Department asked people to report “illegal activity protests” through its iWatch Dallas app.

    Apparently, K-pop fans got wind of the call, so they spammed the app with fancams, or fan-recorded videos of K-pop performances, to protect protesters.

    The following day, Dallas police announced that the app suffered “technical difficulties,” though they did not cite what caused them.

    3. They spammed hashtags used to antagonize #BlackLivesMatter.

    While many have expressed support for the BLM movement, several slogans emerged to criticize it. These include #AllLivesMatter, #WhiteLivesMatter and #BlueLivesMatter.

    K-pop fans came to the rescue by using the hashtags to spam, yet again, fancams. As a result, the original messages endorsing those hashtags were drowned out.

    4. They matched their idols’ contribution to the BLM movement. Literally.

    BTS made a $1 million donation to the BLM movement. Soon after Variety reported the good deed, ARMY, the septet’s legion of fans, managed to raise $1 million for Black organizations.

    One in an ARMY, a charity-focused collective, tracked the incoming donations.

    “We’ve run big projects before, but the amount of support for this project is overwhelming,” a representative said in a statement. “We truly didn’t know whether the goal would be reached. We’re so proud that ARMY have once again channeled their power for good and are making a real impact in the fight against anti-Black racism.”

    5. They teamed up with TikTokers to embarrass President Donald Trump.

    On Saturday, Trump held a campaign rally at the BOK Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The venue had seats for over 19,000 people, but only a little more than 6,000 attendees showed up.

    What happened? It turns out that K-pop fans and TikTokers teamed up to reserve as many seats as possible, without the intention of showing up.

    Feature Image (representation only) via Drew Angerer / Getty Images

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