A debate has been sparked on what is a socially acceptable way to display one’s fandom after posts on social media of students wearing BTS backpacks went viral on the same day.
Recently, a Tiktok went viral showing a student walking with a BTS backpack with the text, “these bts fans different.” The creator (@808fodagrind) also used the audio, “Oh my God, bruh. Oh, hell nah, man. What the f*ck, man?”
The video has gone viral with 581.2K views, and 73.6K likes at the time of writing. By the text and audio, the creator clearly intended to ridicule the person featured in the video for wearing BTS merchandise. Many self-professing K-Pop fans refuted the notion that “all of us are like this.”
So, fellow K-Pop fans were going against the backpack-wearer and siding with the creator, making fun of them in the comment section.
More are coming to the student’s defense in the video now, even calling the backpack “cute.” The creator is also claiming that they are friends and had posted it with their knowledge.
Still, a serious debate has been sparked. The TikTok video made its way to Twitter, also going viral, where most ARMYs are perplexed over the issue.
Many feel that the netizens on TikTok are “overreacting” over something as simple as a backpack.
Others have pointed out how, for years, it has been socially acceptable for students, especially guys, to have backpacks of fandoms, such as video games. Yet, when a girl wears a backpack of her favorite K-Pop group, it’s something to be ridiculed.
Considering it’s common for people to wear band T-shirts, it does not seem like it should be so much of a problem.
meanwhile if you wear an ACDC shirt or Rolling Stones shirt you’re literally deemed cool… 20 years from now everyone’s gonna print ‘BTS’ all over shirts in H&M and make it retro https://t.co/tyun0bMMD2
— ☁︎⁷ seksi nookim (@the7print) September 1, 2022
Although another TikToker pointed out that even fans of rock bands and video games have been made of in the 2000s. Yet, once it becomes mainstream, everyone wants to act like it’s cool.
— monie⁷༺☆༻ (@thvspam) September 1, 2022
The debate didn’t end there, either. Similarly, a photo of another student with a BTS backpack was uploaded to Twitter with the caption, “saw this at school today…disgusting.”
The comment section only worsened as netizens encouraged physically bullying the student in the photo all over a backpack.
Again, ARMYs are dumbfounded over the hostility towards someone wearing a backpack featuring the logo of their favorite K-Pop group.
Many netizens are saying that those who are cyberbullying are “all bark and no bite” and living out “mean girls fantasies” through the social media app.
The original poster has since defended their actions. They do not attend the same school; it was a friend’s photo.
While these two backpack-related posts went viral recently, the topic of BTS merchandise is reoccurring. It is something even the members themselves are mindful of. So, whenever they are involved in the design of their own products, they are concerned about making it too obvious.
For example, in Episode 1 of BTS Become Game Developers, the members brainstorm names for their self-designed mobile game, now known as BTS Island: In the SEOM. At the time, they proposed not including the group’s name so that a player wouldn’t have to reveal to anyone that they are ARMY.
Likewise, BTS’s Artist-Made Collection’s items are only recognizable as merch by fellow ARMYs. Everything is subtle enough that everyone else wouldn’t be able to tell.
Still, the majority of ARMYs feel that one shouldn’t have to hide their interests. So, with the recent cyberbullying against the two wearing backpacks, many are sharing images of their own backpacks in solidarity.
— JAYKAY ⭐ 🍬 (@chim0ra) September 2, 2022
— 사이다 @ working on comms (@EIPlPHOROS) September 1, 2022
— dea (@koocorepng) September 1, 2022
Would you rock a BTS backpack to school?