Hi All! I believe that as a KPOP fan, we are all in charge of what we are exposed to. If we rely on only one site to “give us the news,” we could be missing out on so much on a story. So, we would like to encourage EVERYONE to start to branch out and find sources for your news. Never let the biased large “news” sites control what you see, they just want the money your KPOP-hungry clicks give them! Therefore, I’ve made this guide, helping you explore the internet as a KPOP fan, even an international one. Maybe when we get their viewer stats cut in half, those large sites (especially one in particular) will clean up their acts and actually start to care about the fans and the K-artists again!
If you speak and can read Korean, well, you have an advantage that some KPOP fans do not. If you aren’t a master of reading Korean, the first step you should take is to get Google Translate for Chrome. If you don’t already have Google Chrome, what rock have you been living under?! You better NOT be using Internet Explorer! Bad human, bad!!! Anyway, yes, Google Translate is an extension for Chrome. You go to the link (after you install Google Chrome) and then click the INSTALL button. Now, when you go to ANY website, no matter what language it is written in, it will translate it to the language of your choice. And no, this is not the crappy version of Google Translate where you plug in what you want it to translate and it spits out gibberish. It will, if not totally in eloquent writing, be in a writing style that will make enough sense for you to understand what you’re reading. It will do it automatically. Now you can visit the sites that all the big “news” sites frequent and link to. Also, Google Chrome just works better for a lot of the sites we will mention later, and some sites even have special little add-ons just for Google Chrome!
Also, to help you learn Korean as you go, add the Korean Tooltip-Dictionary add-on. This will enable you to just mouse over anything and it will let you know what it is in Korean/Hangul.
Now that you can translate pages, it will be a lot easier to complete the next step: Get a Weibo, Me2Day, etc., social site account.
From this, you can find your favorite idol or band’s fan cafes, where some exclusive content will get leaked for fans to enjoy. Usually, it’s understood that the fan cafe goodies shouldn’t be taken out of the cafe, so sometimes you will get the good stuff when the news sites can’t:
FIND THE FANSITES!
Yes, the next step is to find the fans that are so dedicated, they have created large communities just to worship your favorite idol. Sometimes these are run by the entertainment companies themselves and the artists will get involved, but a majority of sites are fan-founded. You can get access to exclusive pics, fan-taken pics and video, exclusive access to teasers, forums, stories, interviews, etc. As I am in love with only so many bands and idols, I can give you my list, but if you don’t see your favorite below, Google is your friend:
AFTER SCHOOL/ORANGE CARAMEL:
TUMBLR! Yes, this one haven for KPOP (all everything else) can be the front lines for any and all KPOP news and tidbits, if you decide to follow the right people. It’s a little give and take, you can follow but sometimes you learn the best stuff and make friends if you put effort into posting and reblogging things yourself. This is nothing like Facebook, and if you are pretty innocent and sensitive, you might want to stay away. Yes, there’s filters, but why would you want to use them?!!!! Create a tumblr, customize your page, and get to searching the tags and finding the other Tumblrs YOU want to follow! There are a few K-Idols on there, and some of the best fansites also have Tumblrs.
Also, you should add the MISSING E addon for Chrome to be able to bookmark posts from your dashboard.
Grab the news, straight from the source!!!! Yes, now that you can translate pages and maneuver around a little bit better, you can go explore some of the Korean News sites that are actually reputable. They discuss politics, economy, and yes, ENTERTAINMENT. Sometimes there’s even Korean music-related articles and social pieces that are soooo interesting, you can’t help but read them. Some of these sites are also international newspapers, so they can be in English and Korean:
YOUTUBE is your Friend! Yes, there are a lot of Fansites and Entertainment companies on Youtube, and you can follow their channels and get updates on your Youtube homepage once new videos, MVs, specials, and performances are posted!
TWITTER. Yes, it can seem like too much at times, but you can follow the idols, producers, entertainment companies, and fansites that YOU want, and sometimes the latest news is posted here first. You can get your fill of selcas, photoshoots, and MV premieres the second they come out, straight from the source (sometimes even the idols will post that it is out FIRST):
24-7KPOP on Twitter
Once you find an artist you like, usually you only have to see who THEY follow to find all your other favorites. Sometimes there are live chat-tweet sessions between idols and fans!
NOW I will share with you some of the random sites that we at 24-7KPOP love and check every day for the latest news. You don’t have to rely on the large “news” sites to get your fix. Sometimes the best articles, posts, and exclusive content come from other, more fun and dedicated sites that don’t work for a large profit:
Most of the above sites and sites cited throughout this post can be found in just about every area of the internet. You can subscribe to them, find them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter, and even get the mobile versions of the pages (even apps) from iTunes and whatever service your phone provides. We at 24-7KPOP use all of these to find our news, and we encourage you all to either tune into us or check in on these sites whenever you craze your daily dose of KPOP. Of course, there’s tons of sites out there not listed, and if you have a fav (THAT ISN’T ALLKPOP), then please post it in the comments! You can bookmark this post, spread it around, bookmark our page, and bookmark any links, but please realize that the power is now in your hands. If you start to use these links, that will put a dent in the viewership of the big “news” sites and will cause them to change their ways in order to lure the educated fans back! Ultimately, this is what we want: Fair reporting, interesting stories, and less sensationalizing. We are fans, not money purses for those sites and their ad engines to drain dry!
24-7KPOP RANDOM FAVORITES:
Also check out the KPop Kollective, a research group that follows the growth of the Hallyu Wave!
Written and compiled by Kim at 24-7KPOP