T is for “True” Fans
What makes a “true” fan?
Is it loving every song an artist releases? Is it going beyond the music and loving the artist for his or her personality? Does it involve unconditional forgiveness for mistakes?
I’ve been contemplating this a lot lately. It seems whenever criticism arises about an artist, accusations of people not being “true” fans are inevitably thrown around. And I find that the situation is almost always nuanced.
Take the Jessica situation. When Jessica left Girls’ Generation, every type of fan was accused of not being sincere. Those who agonized over their group losing a member were criticized for not taking Jessica’s well-being seriously. Those who supported Jessica were considered betraying OT9 . Those who were only focused on the music and nonchalant about the drama with the members were thought of as superficial.
How about when an artist makes a mistake? Take Kim Hyun Joong and his abuse case. Those who defend him are considered to be blindly in love and not critical enough of their role model. Those who have abandoned KHJ are considered unloyal haters for not sticking up for their star. Those who want to avoid the controversy and simply focus on the music are thought of as ignorant of a very serious issue.
What about when it comes to the music? VIXX’s new song, Dynamite, is currently causing quite a stir in the Starlight community. Some fans are disappointed in the lighter concept, and are being shunned for only bandwagoning on VIXX’s dark concepts. Starlights who criticize the disappointed fans are considered too defensive and sensitive.
Here is what I have realized after seeing all of this: A true fan is one who wishes the best to come out of their artists, whether that be in the artist’s behavior or music. True fans became fans in the first place because they liked the music, but since we are all human beings, it is totally fine to dislike particular songs or concepts. When it comes to controversy, a fan should acknowledge that the mistake happened, and hope for it not to happen again.
When it comes to members leaving the group, that one is still murky for me, because in every case, fans can never truly know what exactly happened to lead to that decision. The one thing I do look down upon is gross assumptions. We weren’t there. We can’t assume conditions occurred that were not explicitly shared.
Question of the Day:
What do you make of all of this? Is there one definition of a “true” fan?
#NowPlaying: Six Feet Under by VIXX. Yes, I am one of the Starlights who sadly was very disappointed by Dynamite. But this gem showed up as one of the non-title tracks on the album and I’m in love.
Wanna talk K-pop? Follow me on Twitter @mystification86!