Fansite managers aren't official press photographers, yet we appreciate and share their photos. Sometimes we even support them by buying merchandise such as dolls, calendars and stickers. However, as much as we love the photos they take, have they now gone too far in wanting to get that perfect shot?
Recently, there have been numerous incidents of fansite-nims behaving badly at Asian pop events. (We'll just name a few).
2016 Asia Artist Awards (AAA)
Some fansite managers stuck their large camera lenses into where the idols were sitting and caused a bit of a ruckus at the AAA. They were a little too close-for-comfort to MAMAMOO, with one member moving to a different seat.
SEVENTEEN members have been used as camera rests. Being treated as temporary tripods...
Fansites also rushed forward during EXO's winning speech, taking over the empty seats designated for celebrities in order to get better shots by being closer to the stage.
오늘자 AAA 시상식에서 무개념짓한 엑소홈마들을 좀보세요 엑소 상타니까 갑자기 연예인석 침범하면서 우르르르 내려와가지고 대포꺼내들고 ㅋㅋ 경호원들이 뛰어와서 하지말라고 바락바락해도 경호원 밀치면서까지 찍은 엑소 무개념팬분들 반성좀하세요 먹칠제대로하네 pic.twitter.com/NS5rnfAgeC
— 개팔이 (@xrpbRsXbsjAxu9l) 16 November 2016
Got7's concert in Hong Kong
A physical brawl broke out at Got7's "Fly in Hong Kong" concert earlier this year between the manager of a Korean Got7 fansite and a Chinese fan. Supposedly the fight broke out when the fansite-nim put her DSLR on the Chinese fan's shoulder to take photos. When the Chinese fan brushed her camera off, accidentally knocking off her glasses, the former reacted violently in retaliation.
The fact that bounce is playing in the background makes it even funnier pic.twitter.com/6p5yqeZnHB
— bridget (@giriboytrash) 31 July 2016
Outside Music Bank - artist arrivals
Another altercation - this time between two Cosmic Girls fansites - was witnessed by the idols themselves. The two were seen physically shoving and elbowing each other out of the way as they competed for the best angle.
The girl group was obviously shocked at seeing the fight and one member even said, "Please don't fight!" in Korean.
— 147 COMPANY (@147_Company) 1 April 2016
With all these recent incidents, have fansites now become the self-glorified and self-proclaimed paparazzi of K-pop?
Is our support of their sites and goods encouraging this sort of aggressive and intrusive behaviour? Should there be more policing and regulation where fansites are penalised for their actions like being banned from future events or having their sites shut down? Would you boycott them?
It's difficult to rely solely on security at events because security guards are only human too. They can't control every situation (nor should they be forced to, in reality, if fans behaved properly). One person versus thousands of fans is no easy task.
This is not just an issue with fansites, but with fan behaviour in general. There’s recently been a lot of negativity around fan behaviour at award shows like the Melon Music Awards last weekend; lightsticks were turned off during artist's performances to show the fans' lack of support. Other fans complained vocally about groups winning certain awards.
This begs the question - What can we do to encourage better fan etiquette?
I sometimes wonder if I am part of a fan club or a fight club.
K-pop is supposed to be fun. Idol groups get along with each other so why can’t their fans too?