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Behind Kpop Fandom

“Kpop”, the abbreviation for “Korean Pop”, has been hotly debated in recent years. There exists several relationships in Kpop structure: the relationship between fans and idols, idols and their companies, and among fans of different Kpop groups. From an outsider’s perspective, these relations could be complicated and chaotic, but we could tell there are theories support these relationships.

The first relationships exist between fans from different Kpop groups. Let us suppose there are fans from three Kpop groups: Group E, Group B, and Group BB.

The fans from Group E and from Group BB do not like each other, while fans from Group B and Group BB do not like each other. Therefore, there are weak ties between (fans of Group E and Group BB), and (fans of Group B and Group BB). In this structure, fans of Group E and Group B are more likely to become alliance, so there could be a strong ties between them. In this triangle, there exist two weak ties(-) and a strong tie(+), which satisfy the Structural Balance Property and is a stable triangle. If fans from two Groups becomes alliance, there are many benefits: for example, when voting idol groups for awards, with the help of alliance, the number of votes are more likely to be doubled, which means more chance to win.

Another relationships lies between idol groups and their companies. Before idols’ debut, they need to be trainees in their company for years. Being trained with company’s resources costs money, so some companies have two strategies for the pay. If a trainee was trained for free, after his or hers debut, she would give a greater portion of the money she earned¬†(lets say 65% of total) to her company, compare to trainees who paid the trainee fee for her own(Trainees who paid their own fee might only need to give 45% of total to the company). In this case, since the money that idols earn might be different each year and the money costs on training is hard to estimate,¬†the trainees and the company need to think of the best strategies for money distribution before signing the contract.




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September 2018