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Music and toxic fans


Rue
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Yes!  We (all genres) want our music to be popular and appreciated!  Yes!  Fans have been around forever!  Paganini had fans.  I was too young to be into the Beatles in their heyday, but old enough to remember teens going gaga.  So yes...music good...enthusiastic fans...good.

But - and someone can clear up any misunderstandings I might have - this has recently 'popped' up.

1. TwoSet Violin (classical music educators, comedians, active performers) made a parody of a song.  They were basically commenting on the use of classical music in new music, I think in part, to highlight how classical music is both ignored, but still always utilized, without broader awareness, in said new music.

2. K-Pop Band, Blackpink, released a song/video (Shout Down) that repeats two bars of  "La campanella" by Paganini. I am not up on K-Pop, but I appreciate how popular it is among their fans.

3. TwoSet Violin makes a video - that includes all of La Campanella...and it was very well done.  Eddy was dressed up like Paganini and walking 4 cute dogs.  Brett was dressed up as Mozart...and it was all very funny. I'll let you look it up on your own if interested.

4. Apparently, fans of Blackpink are called 'Blinks'.  The 'rabid' fans took offence at the parody. Didn't realise it was a parody.  Some thought Paganini was still alive and directed a great deal of vitriol towards Paganini/Eddy...accusing him of plagiarising himself, misogyny (I think because of the dogs), etc. and also plagiarising Blackpink (but I was having a hard time following this bit).

5. TwoSet recently performed in a live concert (Mendelssohn) with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra...and the fans tried to get the concert shut-down.; 'canceled'.  I don't think Blackpink themselves were involved.  Just fans.

6.  The concert was not canceled.  The SSO did not react.

So...if you've followed all that...I suppose what messes with my (particular) head is that 'fans' think (?) it's acceptable to blindly, and viciously, react to perceived insults.  That it's even  acceptable to not do ANY homework before being horribly vicious.  I can see not knowing who Paganini is...but these fans obviously have access to a computer and Google.  Wouldn't you look him up?  Especially when watching a YouTube musical comedy - put out by YouTubers - BEFORE commenting? 

I gather that, ultimately, to these rabid fans, that the music isn't important...or education...and that only being part of a group is?  People have always blindly followed - but this is an example of such an unnecessary extreme to take things to.  In this day and age, where we're becoming more globalized and (on the surface at least) trying to make a world a better place - why is this sort of extreme reaction happening? That's the part I just can't get my head around.

Regardless.  TwoSet have addressed the vitriol. Good on them, for following through and not backing down. Hope everyone learned something from this.

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On 11/25/2022 at 5:06 PM, Bill Merkel said:

legalized hallucinogens + instant communication explains a lot 

I think the medical data on legalized hallucinogens suggests the opposite effect (feelings of empathy/sympathy/connection).  You could make a case for legalized amphetamines or the fact that alcohol is legal. Both of those cause anger and aggression and disinhibition.

(But Korean law is very strict on drug use... Korean citizens aren't even allowed to experiment with drugs outside of Korea.  Singapore is also quite strict.  Needless to say, K-Pop is a worldwide phenomenon, but I don't think toxic fandom has anything to do with hallucinogen use in the Netherlands or Oregon or whatever.)

I agree about the instant communication though.

I think it's just natural human desire for attention.  In order to get more attention people on the internet take stronger and stronger [stupid] positions.

Also, there are 8 billion of us on the planet now.  Surely, we must expect a fair number of dummies.

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In the 60's and 70's, drugs were the great equalizer.

In the 80's and arguably to the current day, guns were the great equalizer.

But most importantly, in this current climate, the internet and the keyboard are the great equalizers.  People hide behind anonymity and it empowers them to say what ever is on their mind with little tangible recourse.  Of course, my opinion here fits that bill.  And before anyone starts, this is not a debate on drugs, guns, politics, or religion.

Having said all of that, my opinion is that although I laugh, cringe, and even pass judgment on many of the comments made to attack TwoSet's parody:

1. TwoSet are arguably adults and knew what they were getting into.  They know K-pop and the fan base.  They know that they draw a good amount of criticism.  

2. Even if at least one, hopefully more, Blinks look up Paganini, La Campenella, and/or anything classical music related, and learn something about the issues, I personally think that TwoSet's mission is accomplished given that they knew this would come (see number 1).

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  • 1 month later...
On 1/9/2023 at 4:02 AM, outofnames said:

I suspect most of the toxic fans are probably 12 years old with unfettered access to social media.

I would say opining that "most toxic fans are probably 12" is underestimating K-pop and Blackpink fans. 

Unfortunately, my spouse is a Blackpink fan and we can tell you that there are tons of fans ranging from teens to mid-40s on up. 

Like I said before, TwoSet knew what they were getting into.  They too are K-pop fans.  If they only reach a handful of toxic fans and those fans do some research to learn a new genre of music, TwoSet did their job.  That is one of the focal facets of TwoSet's channel: to reach new audiences.   

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Speaking as an "anonymous" poster...the anonymity is the biggest problem on social media. Yeah, so I'm part of the problem! 

The second problem is on-line stalkers/trolls who are also anonymous. 

The third problem is that the anonymous actually have a voice (undeserved in many instances) - and probably out of proportion to the actual number of dissenters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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32 minutes ago, Rue said:

Speaking as an "anonymous" poster...the anonymity is the biggest problem on social media. Yeah, so I'm part of the problem! 

The second problem is on-line stalkers/trolls who are also anonymous. 

The third problem is that the anonymous actually have a voice (undeserved in many instances) - and probably out of proportion to the actual number of dissenters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anonymity empowers pretty much everyone.  Keyboard warriors.

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On 1/10/2023 at 9:47 AM, violinnewb said:

I would say opining that "most toxic fans are probably 12" is underestimating K-pop and Blackpink fans. 

Unfortunately, my spouse is a Blackpink fan and we can tell you that there are tons of fans ranging from teens to mid-40s on up. 

Like I said before, TwoSet knew what they were getting into.  They too are K-pop fans.  If they only reach a handful of toxic fans and those fans do some research to learn a new genre of music, TwoSet did their job.  That is one of the focal facets of TwoSet's channel: to reach new audiences.   

Fair enough on the age range of fans, but are you saying that toxic fans are equally represented across the full age range?  Because getting upset over the perceived disrespect of some band one likes seems like the exclusive domain of juveniles.

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14 hours ago, outofnames said:

Fair enough on the age range of fans, but are you saying that toxic fans are equally represented across the full age range?  Because getting upset over the perceived disrespect of some band one likes seems like the exclusive domain of juveniles.

No.  

Based upon my research, I am saying that over 50% of Blackpink fans are in the 20 yr old to 50 yr old range while about 30% are in the 10 to 19 yr old range.  

For BTS it is about the same. 

For the purposes of "toxic fans" and internet outrage, I am saying that if there are 100 complaints, if all 30% of teen fans complained on the internet, this would not consist of a majority.

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20 hours ago, violinnewb said:

No.  

Based upon my research, I am saying that over 50% of Blackpink fans are in the 20 yr old to 50 yr old range while about 30% are in the 10 to 19 yr old range.  

For BTS it is about the same. 

For the purposes of "toxic fans" and internet outrage, I am saying that if there are 100 complaints, if all 30% of teen fans complained on the internet, this would not consist of a majority.

That math doesn’t work.

What you’re trying to suggest is if 31% of all Blackpink fans complained then at least some complaints must be fans over the age of 19 (following your age stats).

I’d be hard pressed to believe that 30% of a fan base makes toxic comments online, unless the fan base is exceedingly small.

I maintain that the toxic comments skew heavily to the juvenile side.  If I’m wrong, I continue to weep for society.

In any case, I’m aware there are plenty of toxic adults out there.  I guess I just hoped most people would have grown out of this sort of childish and pointless behavior over, of all things, a musical group.

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This definitely isn’t a behavior limited to young fans.  I come from the book world, and there are rabid legions of fans there that can absolutely behave badly, and skew far older than k-pop fans.

I think we’re wired to seek belonging, and the social dynamics online interact with that wiring in some really potent ways.  Sometimes the outcomes are amazing.  Sometimes they’re absolutely brutal.

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