How BTS and K-Pop disrupted mainstream politics

How BTS and K-Pop disrupted mainstream politics

– [Narrator] In a political
climate as crazy as this one, the most powerful speech
at the United Nations wasn’t actually from a world leader but from a KPop band, huh ? We have the FAQs. “I wanna hear your voice, and
I wanna hear your conviction.” – [Narrator] That was Kim
Nam Jun, a member of BTS, one of the world’s most
popular KPop boy bands. You might have seen them here, here, here, here or even here. – Hey Jimmy ! – Yeah ! – I’m Jimmy ! (laughs) – [Narrator] But their most
important appearance yet was being the first KPop
group to address the UN. “No matter who you are, where you’re from, your skin color, your gender identity, just speak yourself.” – [Narrator] Their
simple, powerful message has come a long way and we don’t just mean from South Korea. To better understand the
sub-genre in Korean music, let’s take you back to the 90’s. (upbeat KPop music) The rising popularity of
Korean dramas and KPop was known as “Hallyu” or Korean wave. But what made that wave swell
into a global phenomenon was the Internet. (“Gangnam Style” by Psy) In fact, the first video to
reach 1 billion views on YouTube was Psy’s “Gangnam Style” in 2012. “Gangnam Style” may have seem
like an overnight success, but it takes much longer for KPop artists to make it big. Aspiring artists are usually scouted by or auditioned for management companies. If selected, they are groomed, mentored and intensely trained from
a young age by managers or agents for years before
recording their first song. It’s a formula used by
many successful groups and labels in the Western world. Think The Temptations, Spice
Girls, Backstreet Boys, The Monkees, Pussycat Dolls
and more but much more intense. The music is fun but it’s no game. KPop is a cultural force
to be reckoned with. Unlike rock music whose history
is embedded in rebellion, KPop’s roots are more business-like. The KPop industry emerged
from the financial crisis in the late 1990’s when the
South Korean economy tanked. To rebuild, the government
didn’t just focus on obvious sectors like
manufacturing and tech, they invested in entertainment. As audiences grew, KPop became
a major South Korean export. Global sales for
KPop-related music and video grew to earn 5 billion a year. And that’s when it got political. (yells in a foreign language) In 2015, South Korea
started blaring KPop music across the border, toward North Korea. Songs such as Apink’s “Just Let Us Love” and Big Bang’s “Bang Bang Bang” were played to entice the North and also show cultural dominance. In 2017, a North Korean soldier
who dashed across the DMZ and were shot five times by its troops even asked to listen to KPop girl bands while recovering in the hospital. Candidates embraced KPop
during South Korea’s presidential election in 2017. Campaigns altered lyrics
to popular KPop songs and choreographed signature dance moves. South Korea’s current President
Moon Jae-in for example used “Cheer Up” by the girl
band Twice as his anthem. In North Korea, people were literally being imprisoned for
watching or listening to KPop but recently there’s been a breakthrough. Kim Jon Un has admitted
that he likes KPop music saying he was deeply moved after watching a 2 hour concert in Pyongyang. The concert was the latest in
a series of diplomatic moves designed to ease tensions
to the Trump and Kim summit. Now we have Korean sensation
BTS stepping up to the plate to address the UN and the world. Telling people to believe their
own convictions and voices. The seven -ember boy band joined UNICEF in creating the LOVE MYSELF campaign, building the belief that, “True love first begins
with loving myself, I have many faults and
I have many more fears but I’m gonna embrace
myself as hard as I can and I’m starting to love myself gradually just little by little.” – [Narrator] The reactions
speak for themselves. Maybe KPop can change the world after all.

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100 thoughts on “How BTS and K-Pop disrupted mainstream politics”

  • This is absolutely beautiful but idk why people say “the first kpop group to address the UN” as if kpop groups are gonna start regularly speaking at the United Nations. This is an achievement for BTS only

  • I don't mean to be an asshole but look at the difference between kim namjoon and Donald trump and tell which one is a president.

    Rm: "I have many flaws and many more fears, but I'm going to embrace myself as hard as I can and love myself"

    Trump: "In two years we have accomplished more than any other administration in the history of this country (bitch, where??)"

  • BTS as one but also considering every member individually have built such a multifaceted legacy and loyal fandom these past years with their own song writing, loveable personalities, era themes, highlight reels and mv's and their parallell universe stories, etc. that it seems almost impossible for the mainstream media to gather what's it about these boys and represent them properly. So my fellow armys: I know it's annoying but don't blame all the newspaper, talk shows and youtube channels. They're completely lost and overstrained with this huge wave of BTS influence.

  • The entire time hearing all the wonderful things BTS has done I am just sitting here like So did they not earn their Exception yet ?

  • Thanks USA TODAY for the analyzing. I’m still trying to understand my obsession with the Korean culture and especially Kpop. I can’t be a day without it. Just good clean positive vibes. My country has a lot to learn from them.

  • i think it's pretty relevant that BTS weren't formed in the same way as a lot of kpop groups. namjoon and yoongi were underground rappers; namjoon was supposed to debut as a hip hop duo in 2010 and yoongi had zero desire to dance or be an idol. bts were not trained in the same way other groups are, at least in the clinical but common practice of molding an idol's personality, and their message has never been all about business. no other kpop group has ever made such an effort to reach out to people all over the world to convey their message like this. kpop is pretty plastic, as much as i hate to admit it – but bts aren't. they definitely aren't your average kpop group, so don't make them out to be something they aren't.

  • How about your search facts, kids. Why do you look down upon them when their way up top. And maybe you should listen of what they done, you ignorant poop pa doops!

  • BTS is a group of young men composed of talented singers, underground rappers, dancers, songwriters, lyricists, composers, producers and instrumentalists. They write songs about social and political issues. Their albums have diff. concepts w/ story lines, symbolism, metaphors and theories. Also, BTS music is versatile w/ different genres like HIP-HOP, EDM, LATIN POP, POP, POP ROCK, BALLAD, JAZZ, R&B, HYPE song and a lot more.

    They are also PHILANTHROPISTS who have donated millions and millions to UNICEF to help end violence against children around the world. Plus, their merch proceeds will go to UNICEF as well as 3% of their album sales. Don't judge them just because they are Koreans. Also, they are literally geniuses and well-educated if u don't know.

    Also, BTS members may not be fluent in ENGLISH but at least they know more than 1 language. They are well-educated too. The leader, spokesman Kim Namjoon speaks 3 languages w/ an IQ of 148. He's a rapper, poet, songwriter, lyricists, composer and producer and a consistent honor student and one of those people who topped the NATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT TEST in South Korea.

  • BTS is the only group who made their way to the top. I don't get why the whole KPOP community should be associated here. Just because BTS is KPOP boyband, doesnt mean the whole KPOP is doing a movement. it's solely BTS.

  • this is good and all but people should start treating kpop acts as individuals and not a package deal box i mean an independent group with their company busting their ass off without the help of others to media credit their work and achievements to the whole kpop industry that's just insulting Why is that western Artists are allowed individuality but kpop acts not???

  • LOL is Gangnam Style still the only KPOP video at 1+billion? PSY paving the way like a godfather for younger generation kpop stars 😀

  • BTS HAS BEEN NOMINATED for the favorite social artist for 2018 American Music Awards (AMAS)!! They also have been nominated for popular award! PLEASE VOTE for these amazing boys who deserve this more than anyone! GO ONLINE AND SEARCH VOTE FOR AMAS! PRESS TOP SOCIAL ARTIST AND CLICK BTS!! You can vote up to 25 times a day! CMON ARMY WE CAN DO THIS!!! 🙂

  • Very well done. You did your research. I don't know why people are offended by that. Thank you for the video!

  • Let me get my tea in case they be saying soemthing bad bout the boys👀

  • "Maybe kpop can change the world after all."
    Yeah um im pretty sure that the ppl are reacting to bts, not the whole of kpop, the distinction shouldve been made a bit clearer.
    This video did really good in researching kpop history and crediting those in the past, but right now at this very moment, its BTS that is changing the world and its through their own individual message and effort that has America and the rest of the world in awe at the scale in number, diversity and loyality that their fans come with. And if we really are giving credit where it is due, then Army should also be applauded for their efforts and unyeilding support and love that they are spreading throughout the world for their common love of quality music and BTS' humility.

    The relationship between BTS and ARMY is like something ive never seen before; absolutely pure and one of its kind. Bts and army really are changing the world 💜💜💜

  • It makes me so proud to know that in the beginning of BTS's carrear they were going up to people and giving out free tickets to their concerts because not enough people came, and now their concert tickets sell out in a matter of seconds


  • It's wrong news. The opinion about Korean government investment is twisted like Japanese point of view. K-pop had been already successful before the Korean government noticed. So the correlation is the opposite. If you ask any people in Kpop industries, they hate to work with the government because the payment is so low. For example, when an event payment for SNSD was normally sixty thousand dollar per time, government payment for an event was four hundred dollar. You probably get the picture.

  • Excuse me Rock N Roll is NOT all about rebellion! In America our governments not the entertainment investors. Please do not compare American Rock and Roll to Korean Pop Music. Our Rock N Roll artists actually play instruments. Further more, what is so nice about playing an instrument in America is that you can choose any genre of music it is up to the ARTIST, not the government. I feel sad for the artists that work very hard and probably make less money than they should for the billions they sell.

  • BTS is NOT a ‘ I’m so rich ‘ K-Pop band. They actually make music for people to enjoy and if you actually did research then maybe you’d actually know something. So umm delete this video before I report it for racism

  • I love BTS, but I hate the people who say they are "proud" of them. Why? You had no influence on their upbringing. You didn't teach them anything that helped them achieve their success. Do something yourself that you can be proud of.

  • How you gonna use his speech in your video and then pronounce Namjoon’s name the way you did bruhh he literally says it at the beginning

  • wow I didn't know about the N. Korea stuff. this is really interesting. thanks for putting this video together. love bts and their message and support of youth. i'm so happy they are starting to be taken more seriously as artists and intellectuals stateside.

  • Nah, BTS is the only kpop group that is such a big deal now. I mean they’re everywhere. I’m not a kpop fan but a huge fan of BTS. They’re way different from other kpop group I’ve heard. Not only their catchy music but BTS is more than just singing catchy music and pretty faces. I’m so proud to be part of their massive fans.

  • Your pronunciation of "Namjoon" is wrong. Its "NAmjoon" like "Nahm" not "N am joon" v hard to explained tho…

  • "I want to hear your voice… No matter who you are, where you’re from, your skin colour, gender identity: speak yourself.”

    @BTS_twt's inspiring message to young people at #UNGA.
    Here the full speech

  • BTS political standpoints aren't brave they are just political enough to cause a bit of chatter but are to flat to actually change or mean anything substantial. I like our boys but look at artist from the 60s like Joan Baez who were imprisoned for their political believes. BTS just ain't even near that

  • I like BTS and I think they mean well but It actually makes me kinda sick when people praise them so much there are others who were/are so much braver and louder

  • Um the kpop movement was started by seo taiji whom used it as an outlet to uplift the youth who had been torn down by society… it got industrialised later on to which he responded by leaving the industry bc it felt like the corporate world had done away with its true meaning. He came back recently to do his ten year anniversary concert at which he passed on the baton to bts for actively being a listening ear for the youth of the world and standing up for their struggles. Kpop is a heavily manufactured industry but don’t denounce its origins.

  • Lol first of all, the UN is a joke. Second of all, I don't know why people think celebrities know anything about politics. Third of all, you should know by now that all of this is just a distraction from all the problems and corruption that are being camouflaged by all this entertainment.

  • I am 58 and my grand daughter introduced me to BTS. Not only is their music amazing but I like the way they connect to people. Speak Yourself! Love Yourself!

  • When you have a huge influence and not only use it for good but continuously without fail to contribute to what you're preaching. That is BTS and what many should strive for IMO.

  • As an ARMY since that fateful day on 2013, I am so proud of them I feel like watching my kids growing into beautiful men I am not even a mom to begin with :'))

  • The fact that whoever wrote the script to this video actually did their research and didn’t just spew some dumb old “bts is not your average boyband!!1! they’re the one direction of korea!1!1” Thank you for this. We appreciate the dedication.