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In the past two weeks, K-pop fans have been in the news more than at any point across the past two years.

But as those actually in K-pop fandoms know, this lot aren’t newcomers to the art of mobilising mass audiences.

Let’s start by talking about how little of this coverage even acknowledges that there are Black K-pop fans in the first place.

Which brings us to the second issue: ignoring the existence of Black fans and their complex experiences within K-pop communities.

This can take the form of dismissing Black fans’ concerns about idols’ misappropriation when it comes to hip-hop concepts — like former 2PM rapper Jay Park, a repeat offender when it comes to cultural appropriation — or labelling Black fans as haters or “antis” for having critical thoughts.

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