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KPOP and its influence on the youth

South Korea is a small country in the East Asia with a population no more than 51 million, more than half of it residing in its capital Seoul Capital Area. The country is prone to floods, tsunamis and cyclones due to it being located in the south of the Korean peninsula. This however does not deter the country from being one of the most developed countries in the world and having a strong influence in various sectors. It has become a popular hub for business and sports.

South Korea has been in news these past few years and for an entirely different reason. A community that has been on top of everyone’s tongue these days is the KPOP community. It has been a sensational topic amongst the music lovers and you can find people humming to a Korean song anywhere you go. So what is KPOP? And what is all the hype about? Well, you are just about to find out.

KPOP is the term representing South Korea’s music culture. Even though the name emphasises pop music, it is in fact an umbrella term for all of South Korea’s diverse musical roots. Pop, ballad, R&B, rock, country, hip hop, reggae and so much more! South Korea has something in store for everyone. It is truly a pity that we didn’t manage to discover this wonder earlier. It is no exaggeration to say that KPOP has become almost something like a mascot for the country.

KPOP is richly diverse and has a prosperous history, much like its western counterparts. Despite the most remarkable impressions of KPOP having been made in this decade, the genre has been making its way into people’s hearts long before that. The origins of Korean music culture can be traced back to even before 57 BCE, which is known as the proto Three Kingdom Era. Korean music (which was called Gayo back then), much similar to other East Asian countries, heavily relied on string instruments. The musical society at that time believed in sharing and exchanging their cultural accomplishments with their neighbour countries. This is also why; most of the Asian countries have essence of various cultures mixed with them.

The Western world however remained ignorant of the Korean music until the very late 19th century. This was the time when Europeans and other western nations had Industrial Revolution going on and began making their move on Asian countries to establish their markets. Most took the suppression approach and washed these Asian countries with their own colors. The folk culture was having a hard time surviving and at the end, somewhat begrudgingly, they accepted parts of the foreign culture in their own. This acceptance also included the ‘band’ culture the European nations had going on in their community. Basically, a band was when a group of music enthusiasts with similar interests came together and created music pieces, sometimes for themselves but mostly for their target audience. This was very intriguing to Koreans who had a similar concept of nomadic groups going place to place and showcasing their music.

In 1990s, the country finally refined their music and produced musical pieces that we now know of as KPOP. If I had to point out, the Seo Taiji and Boys from year 1992 can be pronounced as the one of the first boy groups to have been popularised. And then it began, the era of reshaping the Korean music culture and experimenting with foreign musical elements. The boyband H.O.T. in 1996 brought about the “idol” culture and was very famous amongst the masses creating a separate fandom for themselves.

The late 2000s saw the boom in popularity of KPOP worldwide. With groups like TVXQ and BoA coming from S.M. Entertainment, the Asian population was hooked. KPOP was especially famous in Japan, China, Thailand and Indonesia while also spreading its influence over the western countries. By the next decade, not only KPOP but various other music cultures like Latin and Brazilian became raving sensation. Gangnam Style by PSY that was released in 2012 became so popular; it had many songs failing to meet its popularity in their native countries. It also brought about a wave of intrigued listeners to KPOP community. Later around 2015, KPOP groups such as EXO, Blackpink, and BTS widened their fan base internationally by including English, Japanese, Chinese and other versions of their songs in their albums. Some even took another step forward and promoted their albums on international chat shows and other platforms.

Meanwhile, their associated agencies strengthened their presence of various social media platforms. Twitter, for instance has become one of the favourite ways for fans to follow their idols and connect with other people from their respective fandoms. The fans of such groups now refer to themselves as ‘stans’. The diversity found in a fan base is really astonishing. People from all age groups, regardless of their gender, nationality or race love KPOP and try to support their idols as much as they could.


The youthful section of the society is particularly taken by KPOP. They actively support their favourite groups by buying merch, organising fan festivals and even participating in promotional events organised by the entertainment agencies. This embeds a sense of team spirit in them. Mingling with like-minded people from different social groups makes them more open minded and accepting even in their lives outside of KPOP. They exchange their views, talk about their own culture and learn about others’. They are more confident in expressing themselves and their culture as well as accepting others’. This knowledge also comes in handy when they start working for multinational organisations. The agencies and artists also make sure to integrate other cultures in their art pieces to cater to their diverse fan base. KPOP has also become an incentive for people to learn Korean, so as to not be lost in the lyrics and feel closer to their favourite idols. Learning a new language has always been considered a positive feat and it adds another feather to their career hat.

Most of the KPOP stans condemn racism and even educate the people around them. The recent Black Lives Movement has proved the active participation and support the KPOP community shows towards the events outside their area of interest. Some even went extra mile to ask their idols and agencies to use their presence and support the cause. They used their influence on social media, putting aside the fan wars to voice the plight of black people. This clearly shows that they are aware of differences in culture and understand the sensitivity it brings. Even the artists from time to time promote positive ideas and come forward when required. They use their music to spread love and positive vibes. KPOP also helps people’s inner artists come out and show their appreciation for their favourite idols. They make various fan arts, write fan fictions, and even make remixes of their favourite songs. It induces them to learn art that may or may not be completely outside their career prospects.

KPOP has contributed tremendously to the South Korean economy. People have been extremely curious about the country and their tourism industry is at an all time high. People are coming to the country as tourists, exchange students and even job seekers. The exchange of culture leads to The Korean government even went as far as to appoint the KPOP group EXO as honorary ambassadors of the country. Korean culture, traditions and lifestyle has been positively famed and people show love to every glimpse they can get of this wonderful country. KPOP is also being used as a device for diplomacy. The soft power (pursuing one’s goals by persuading stakeholders using cultural and ideological power) that KPOP holds has been made use of in various economic and legal sanctions.

The foundations of KPOP have not been established on vague promises. It has been a healing salve for its fans for years and a gateway from their busy lives. The Korean songs have been praised for having uplifting messages. Due to the strict censorship and cultural values in South Korea, the songs and lyrics refrain from the use of profanity, indecent language and crude content from being displayed. KPOP is not only famous for its exhilarating music but also for its hyper creative choreographies. Dance enthusiasts all over the world love to learn and recreate their own version of steps for their favourite songs. The songs are also used for dance classes and even professional dancers acclaim the choreographies to be very challenging and fun. Music has always been one of the most sought out forms of escapism and KPOP has been praised to be highly effective in this.


There’s always a dark side to everything. KPOP for all it is fun and games, sometimes proves to be highly problematic. Considering how it came to be, it’s no shock that KPOP experiments with foreign music a lot. And it is quite fine really. But the problem arises when they cross the line between appreciation and appropriation. Through the years, various KPOP groups and idols have been accused of appropriating the ‘Black’ culture. Artists have been found wearing specific clothes or hairstyles that hold sentimental value to different cultures to add ‘flavor’ in their videos. Some underdog artists have even accused KPOP artists of stealing their art without due credit. It’s high time the agencies understand that their audience come from various communities and hurting their sentiments by appropriating their culture would only prove to be detrimental in the long run.

Korean entertainment agencies have also been accused to treating their artists cruelly and degradingly. The young trainees are put under a lot of pressure physically and mentally. Girls are especially forced to maintain their public image and hide their real selves. They should act all cheery and bubbly in front of the crowd. Girls and boys alike are made to project an almost unrealistic and godly image to their fans. This corrupts the minds of young teens that are unconfident about their own bodies. It sometimes leads to severe depression, anxiety, inferiority complex and eating disorders. The artists themselves get little to no sleep for weeks and are prohibited from eating and doing things they like. Various artists even succumbed to the pressure and either left the industry for good, developed mental disorders or some sadly, committed self-harm.

The social media, which is one of the most impactful tools our generation has in their hands, holds the risk of being misused and spreading hate. The national and international fans interact with each other quite often but many a times ill meaning rumours are spread about artists through those interactions. Recently, the rivalry between fandoms has become quite toxic and people have no idea what their venomous words behind the screen can do to one’s mental health. People have become so invested in KPOP that sometimes they take the wins and losses of their artists personally. They bash the rival artists and resort to very extreme measures. Some people are so twisted that they resort to stalking and sending death threats to KPOP artists. Yes the companies are quick to take action against them but by then the damage has already been done.

The KPOP stans have also been found to have an unhealthy obsession towards their idol’s personal lives. Artists spend almost 2/3rd of their days in front of the cameras and most of their time interacting with people. Therefore, it is quite reasonable when they attempt to keep their personal lives private. But alas! Obsessed fans, also known as saesangs, go to extreme ends to invade their small moments of privacy. They stalk them and find out their personal details like addresses, family information and their pasts. Saesangs do not even hesitate to spread these details like wildfire for momentary attention. The artists then are left to deal with whatever backlash it might bring. The dating scene of idols is another thing that keeps fans speculating. Some people go as far as shaming them for being in a relationship. They are quick to leave them and on top of that they slander both parties of the relationship maliciously. This has made artists skeptical about being open with their relationships.


KPOP in recent years has shown its awe-inspiring potential and stunning allure to the world. The genre has shown how a community can modernise and globalise, all the while staying true to their roots. However, it does not overshadow the fact that change is definitely required in the KPOP community. The entertainment agencies need to treat their artists better and make sure to protect them from hate. The people and listeners in general, should also broaden their minds and encourage healthy competition amongst the fandoms and artists. Youth should know how to identify ill- intent from good. They should make sure not to belittle any culture and should not hesitate to call out their idols for doing so. The artists should acknowledge their impact over young and impressionable minds and take actions with caution. They should also know when to fight back and not put their health at risk. The government should keep a watchful eye over the evils present in the community and aim to lend their hand in eradicating them.

Any and all form of art is beautiful. It soothes the soul and revitalises one’s day. KPOP is a magnificent form of art. Like all other art forms, it was cultivated as a means of self-expression and bringing out the beauty of Korean culture. The art itself is untainted. How people decide to play will it is in their hands is entirely up to them. So you better get a grip soon, because KPOP is here, and it is here to stay.

What do you think?

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Disha Dhage

good content

Disha Dhage


Disha Dhage

well written

Disha Dhage

keep up the good work

Disha Dhage


Disha Dhage

will share

Disha Dhage

keep writing

Disha Dhage


Riya Rajkotiya

Nice topic
Well explained


This one also is very relevant, it covers a lot about what is popular nowadays. Since we can’t deny that I also into KPOP but as long as this motivates us and used in good manner and utilize accordingly, then it’s all good.

This is good content! Well-researched and provides a balanced argument, so thank you!

Khushi Sati

I really liked how you added a whole paragraph dedicated to kpop groups ! appreciated

Mohini Agrawal

Hey it is a really unique topic and you wrote about it effortlessly thank you for sharing great content

Yashaswini Bhat

 Tanmeet Kapoor this article is brilliantly written. every point you mention seemed so real about how KPOP as effected the youth in both good and bad ways. one of the great article which I read and love to share to my girl gang who love KPOP.

Jigyasa vashistha

This is so true & amazing KPOP has shown a sudden rise.. & songs are just so wonderful.. It’s just good for entertainment bt its sad how all money is so much so with these entertainment & political people… Like rest profession are too minor…

Jigyasa vashistha

Superbly written.. Wishing you all the very best. Have a nice day

Jigyasa vashistha

Just lovely..

Simone Morarka

This is a very balanced article. Well done!

Simone Morarka

As a fellow kpop fan, i really appreciate you covering this topic :))
Kudos to you!

Sakthiswaari R M D

you have pointed out each and every advantages and disadvantages that are happening due to this addiction towards the K-POP .

Sree rekha k zenith

South Korean music culture has already influenced the youth. Good writing.


true… I am a kpop fan myself, I can totally relate and understand this…

Kirtika Tiwari

Such an informative post! Thanks for sharing.


Majority needs something new to survive on and k-pop is one of the hipsters, good written!

Kirti manaktala

Personally, as an avid listener of K-POP and a huge fan of their lyrics this article spoke to me. loved it so much.

Manasi Bhosale

Being a K-pop fan I can relate to it. Amazing article! Keep it up!

Shramana Singha Roy

wow, thank you it is very informative article.

Neha Upasani

Different culture have different ideas and it also have a huge audience… Advantage and disadvantage both are fairly described..

Vanshika Kothari

very nicely written.

Elon bhengra

good one


well written and very structured and clear. great job.

Srijita Chatterjee

I really like this article! It is so formative.

Meenakshi A Nair

A good topic, and thank u for sharing this knowledge

Aditi Dhoundiyal

It’s very informative and well written

Manvi Verma

Awesome article. This is the first time I got to know about K-POP. I’m a music fan but I did not knew about this.
Thanks for the information.

Sayeeda Zaiba

Very well written Shalini. Kpop has been quite influencing the youth at another level lately and you have presented both the sides of the industry very well.

Jiniya Chakraborty

This was so interesting. I really wanted to know more about this.

Sabira Solanki

Hey Shalini! I can’t thank you enough for writing such a beautifully laid out article that covered almost everything related to KPOP and it’s history. People view KPOP and it’s stans as “crazy teens” when infact, they have done a lot than most of those entitled people belittling them have done; from raising $1 million just by the ARMY’S to the entire projects regarding anti-bullying by Kard member BM, breast cancer awareness and donations regarding it. KPOP has helped adolescents discover new talents of themselves by watching their idols, improving relations between countries like Korea and Japan by artists like BoA and so much more..

I just want to add one thing, the part where you wrote about how some KPOP artists have taken credit for the work of some other lesser known artists, I think it would be better if’s it was “Entertainment agencies”, since most of the times, the artists are themselves unaware of the fact, and are quieted by the companies if they want to speak up. Other than that, I love the article, thank you!

Sneha Agrawal

Very knowledgeable article!!Could learn and take away so much from it.Thank u so much for compiling & writing this article in such a splendid way!!✨

Khushi Garg

First of all, any arohas here???
Now, I love this post, the post covers really all the aspects of kpop and I loved reading it. 감사합니다 ! It means thank u in korean

Jigyasa vashistha

this is such a wonderful article!! thanks for writing 🙂

Nidhi Dahiya

Very relevant with amazing content. Keep writing


It’s unique and a new content I’ve seen here so far, nice content and writing!


Tempting topic!

Parvathy M

this was a really, really, really good article! I love how relevant it is and how all encompassing it is of mostly all the positive and negative aspects of the industry and the fandom :))) Though I’d like to mention one additional issue – of the fetishization of artists, how certain fans fetishize the people they stan, fans who aren’t Korean, I mean; that has also become a pretty problematic thing.


Creative content.keep it up:))

Janhavi Shrivastava

Great article!! Really liked how you included both sides, the good and the bad and concluded it really well too! Many of my close relations are into Kpop and are “stans” so I could really relate to both the good and the bad aspect of this!

Cheers! 🙂


Great content!
I don’t follow Kpop and honestly speaking j don’t understand the craze as well. People are crazy fans. But, now I get it and it’s worth the praise. You have showcased the entire timeline which is amazing!
The best part about your article is that you have incorporated the good as well as the bad. You have presented your thoughts very well.
Enjoyed reading it! Well done!



Shramana Singha Roy

This topic is very new to me , but I learned a lot from this article. Thanks for sharing