A viral clip, capturing ZEROBASEONE member Ricky‘s horrors at the restaurant Haidilao, has sparked an intense online backlash toward “bootsoonies,” or borderline-sasaeng fans who invade idols’ boundaries.
The clip is short, at about two seconds, but it shows Ricky on an escalator—basically trapped among the bootsoonies. One of the so-called fans can be heard speaking to Ricky, and the idol is responsive with a nod.
내가 보고있는 게 맞음?… pic.twitter.com/JBwQsL36wX
— 윤젤리 (@jellyun725) September 29, 2023
What am I even looking at?!
However, the idol looks uncomfortable in the situation; His body remains turned away from the mob, and his eyes avoid making contact.
Other tweets also shared bootsoonies following ZEROBASEONE members too close…
사람들한테 엄청 둘러 쌓였네… 간만에 쉬는날 열심히 뽈뽈뽈 돌아다녔는데 그래… 하오야 너가 좋으면 돼따.. pic.twitter.com/C7wJg17Yes
— 장하다 짱하오 (@haobin0706) September 29, 2023
Surrounded by people… Looks like you were busy out and about on your day off. Good for you, Hao. If you’re happy, then I’m happy.
…and even waiting outside of the restrooms that the members entered.
아니 ㅅㅂ 미치셨어요?? 상식이 없으세요?? 하 진짜 개념 없는거 아냐 이건;; 화장실 앞에서까지 이러는거 스토킹이에요 학교에서 안배워주셨어요??? 존나 소름돋네 애들도 사람인데 화장실 앞에서 이렇게 기다리고 있으면 얼마나 소름 돋냐고;; 이러다가 나중에 남장까지 해서 들어가겠다고 하겠네… pic.twitter.com/7k6FjzPmzg
— 장하다 짱하오 (@haobin0706) September 30, 2023
Nooo… WTF? Are these people out of their minds? Where are their common sense? SIGH. This is so stupid, isn’t it? To follow idols to the bathroom? This is stalking. Do schools not teach them manners? This gives me chills…
Such evidence of the bootsoonies’ lack of consideration for personal space and privacy has since upset a lot of K-Pop fans. Online communities have been flooded with comments criticizing the behavior.
- “I tried going to see the idols at the broadcast stations before, but I ran into fans like those. And other fans babbling nonsense for attention. I stopped going, haha. It helped me understand the reason some people hate idol fans.”
- “It’s the worst at airports… These bootsoonies are there from dawn. Harass people into giving them seats closer to the idols. Talking about how it’d be great if their luggages got switched up with the idols’ and whatnot… I felt terrible for the celebrities.”
- “Sasaengs cross-dressing and following their idols into the bathrooms aren’t new. That has been around since decades ago.”
- “Ugh… I hope someone punches them in the face. It’d be well-deserved.”
- “I don’t doubt it. Had I been an idol, I would’ve hated these so-called fans. I would curse them out and then get canceled into retirement.”
- “This is terrible.”
- “I remember when a female idol was at a press conference and one of the female fans tried to follow the idol into the bathroom stall at the conference center. Old tale, but still…”
- “I mean… I can see the reason people hate on idol fans. And I would not be surprised if some idols end up hostile toward their own fans. Had I debuted as an idol, I would’ve thrown hands and then gotten canceled for controversial behavior. LMAO. People are ridiculous.”
- “The bathroom picture, though? That’s f*cking out of line.”
- “Oh, no…”
- “Things have gotten so bad. These fans follow them onto the flights, too… But there’s no shame because they think they’re doing god’s work and creating more opportunities for the idols to gain fans. So… we need to stop consuming their work.”
- “This is insane… I can’t imagine how anxious the idols might feel, thinking their entire lives are being watched and recorded like that.”
- “But this is the behavior from 99% of the fansite masters who follow their idols overseas. I’m not even kidding. How do I know? I’ve been one. It’d be easier to find fansites that DON’T do this. The same fansites who don’t get a lot of likes and follows because their uploads are slow. You all hate this, but continue to support it. A lot of the times, bootsoonies like them are on the same flights, inside the venues, and alongside all of the scheduled events. Your favorite fansite masters are no different. And it’s true that fansites from China are more aggressive.”
- “What even is the point, though? What worth are the pictures taken like that? These so-called fans say they love their biases, but are ruining their lives. Sigh.”
- “This is why sasaengs are not fans. It makes sense why so many idols hate sasaengs.”