The Power of Fans’ Gift Giving
Although the holiday season has concluded, gift giving is a process that never ends. While in the past it may have been difficult to shower your favorite idols with gifts, now it only takes a click to make their day!
Gifts To Idols
From high brand clothing and constellations named in their honor to even being granted a title of nobility in Scotland, there seems to be nothing that fans haven’t gifted their favorites. While seemingly extravagant, the most amazing thing about fans’ presents is that the fandom as a collective can contribute to the project, achieving more than an individual ever could alone. Such projects even extend outside of South Korea. For example, many fans have been hooked on purchasing billboards to celebrate idols’ birthdays and anniversaries, with the most prominent billboard location being New York’s own Times Square.
Alternatives to Presents
More recently, fans have been taken aback by BigHit Entertainment’s new policy—that BTS will no longer be accepting gifts, allowing only fan letters to make their way to the members. While it was said that the boys decided this themselves, some were a little upset by the news that they were no longer allowed to send presents. With a little thinking, however, this change makes absolute sense. Over the past few years, the presents that BTS has been receiving only became larger and more elaborate, to the point that it could overwhelm the members. This new rule introduces the idea of instead doing good deeds in the name of idols. As a substitute for lavish presents, many fans have donated money or volunteered for efforts such as planting forests or working on conservation projects. This act is much more heartfelt and speaks volumes more than any Gucci watch ever could.
The conventional way to support an idol is through purchasing their albums and their merchandise. Now that it’s 2018, it’s even possible to support the production of an artist’s projects. MakeStar, a global Hallyu crowdfunding organization, makes this happen. Supporting well known idols such as SONAMOO, B.A.P, Jang Moonbok, and many more, “Star Makers” can support anything from albums to concerts to photobooks. Celebrating their second anniversary, MakeStar has become a preferred platform for over 20,000 fans across the globe due to their ability to receive limited edition prizes straight from the artists themselves.
Making Dreams a Reality
Most recently James Lee, a former member of Royal Pirates, was showered with love from the global community. After suffering an injury which ended his bassist career, James had to let go of his dream and passion of playing the bass as he set off on a new journey toward recovery, both physically and personally. Giving up on a dream can be tremendously hard, but it is much more rewarding and ever so much harder to set off on a new dream. After launching his Kickstarter with an original goal of $27,600 to fund his first EP titled The Light along with a music video, funds were raised in only 11 hours and have surpassed his goal by over 200%. But what’s more touching is that this would never have happened without the support and dedication of his fans! As secluded and spread out as fans are across the globe, when united for a common goal, so much is achievable!
Regardless of how presents are exchanged between K-Pop fans and their favorite artists, at the end of the day, the relationship between the two transcends all distance. We hope that you may have been inspired to support other local fan projects with the intention of making the community and the world a better place.
If there are any burning questions you want to see covered in depth, or if you simply want to share your thoughts on this subject, feel free to open up a discussion in the comments below! Let us know what your favorite K-Pop-themed gifts are!