Monday, August 24, 2015

Understanding KPop Fans

Curiosity has always been one of the things that keep me awake at night. The quest of finding out reasons why people get drawn to certain hobby, person, people, place, groups, genres or anything that consume someone’s affection and attention has always worked my brain double time. I guess this could be associated to why I even continued my degree in Sociology in the first place when I had a chance to study Architecture (I am not great at drawing, just know a thing or two about art haha).

You may be wondering why I started with that little back story, well I got hooked on a few Korean TV Series way back and I spent countless hours waiting for the videos to load to watch them completely. I know some of my friends were hooked on Korean Pop Music (KPop) as well and they spent hours on their fandoms. I got curious as to why a lot of people get addicted on that type of music and I know they get judged on that completely. TV series I would understand a little because there are sub titles and the story is there but KPop? People spend hours understanding the lyrics, memorizing them, going crazy with new songs or pictures and I needed to understand it a little bit, before I conclude.

I don’t like to judge that quickly, I have my fair share of being a fan myself and in my quest for understanding their own reasons I tapped a few friends who are in certain fandoms for this survey. I know this has been long overdue (almost a year overdue, I am sorry guys I got caught up with work and stopped writing altogether).

For those who are still confused why these people are so hooked on Korean Pop (KPop), please don’t judge them, rather understand why they love it. Let me help you a little on that with these statistics. Here’s what I have found out.

Age Group Respondents

Most of those who answered aged ranging from younger than 17 to around 39 years old. Top age range respondents were between 18 – 20 and second was the 21 – 29 age group. This in itself shows that different age groups enjoy the same kind of music, KPop is not just for the teens.

What is surprising though from the number of respondents, almost 95% were females and only 4 male responded to this. I wonder why it is. Care to share boys?

Educational Attainment of Respondents

As predicted, with different age group comes varying educational attainment, the highest was Bachelor’s degree which shows that the fans are already exposed to different theories, concepts and matters of life, striking was there are 4 respondents who are graduate degree holders. For those who say that they do not know a lot about things, this would probably put clarity.

The respondents started liking KPop as early as 8 years ago and to have enjoyed that kind of music this long would mean that it is something special and paramount to their happiness even self-gratification.

Reasons Why They Started Liking KPop

I wanted to dwell more on their reasons, the main thing why I actually created this survey. The top answer was, “The songs are catchy/are beautiful”. People (the non-believers) might wonder why these fans even love this type of music despite the fact that it is in a different language.

Let me tell you why it is for me, music is universal. In different forms, languages or beats it is universal. It conveys different raw emotions through rhythm, flow, words (we may not understand) and its interpretation. Perhaps this is one thing that we need to have on top of our minds when we ask why people love this music even though they do not truly understand the words in it.

How they Support their Idols/Fandoms

There are different ways these fans support their fandoms/idols, they spend tons of money, even averaging to Php 20,000 for this. Some go to other countries to watch their concerts, buy merchandise such as CDs, posters, magazines and even staying up all night to watch videos, read interviews, and interact with fellow fans.

Based on the comments I asked them to give about certain impressions, even judgments from other people, it is safe to say this: Some of you have hobbies that go beyond those things just to get that thrill or happiness, for these KPop fans it is the same.

I love traveling and I spend tons of time researching on where to go next. I save money for it and spend it on where I wanted to go that year/month. I love watching movies and whenever there is a new one I make sure I catch it on cinemas which also involves money, time and effort. You do that too, you may even have more hobbies far expensive than mine and theirs but at the end of it all, it make us happy.

For those who disapprove of some of the things these KPop fans do, I hope I have enlightened you a little. I know I have been. They join fandoms to belong perhaps you could associate it to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs - the third one - Love and Belonging as well as to express with people on the same wavelength whatever they wanted to express that some of us may not fully understand. They love the music because actually who doesn’t? We just vary in taste. Music is universal and our understanding should widen as big as the universe.

Enjoy your fandoms guys. This much I owe to you all. I tried to write more but it's becoming a full blown research not a blog post. haha. Thank you for responding to my survey.

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Sunday, August 23, 2015

Top 5 Reasons Why We Love Maine Mendoza

(c) @mainedcm

I am having a lazy Sunday, which sometimes become a rare commodity. Lazing around, I decided to look through tweets about Maine Mendoza, mentions, her twitter handle, who she follows, what other people say about her, etc. I am no stalker don’t worry, haha I spend my idle time reading, listening to music, writing or sometimes taking photos but I just got curious about her.

I’ve been hooked, like everyone else, on Aldub (thus this wee hours of the morning random blog post But like what Randy David has written on his Inquirer article, I wanted to have a Sociological take on this Phenomenon but I put it aside since the expert already wrote it. He’s an expert, I just took 4 years of Sociology as my degree but never really practiced so I have justification on why I get drawn to her, to Alden, on Aldub. Yes, may expert opinion, safe tayo. Haha.  To sway away from it and break it down, I’d write what draws people to Maine Mendoza instead.

Anyway, I came across the Maine Mendoza Official Fans Club (twitter: and FB their tweet about how people can join their group, they/we should tell them why WeLove MaineMendoza. Guys, I write (blab) a lot so I may have to utilize my blogsite for the reasons 140 characters cannot allow me to express.

You see I’ve only been active on 2 major clubs. Team PI (defunct haha but I love them to death) for Camile Velasco – the people I have met there are now considered my long time real friends. If you do not know Camile (Koy to us) she was the 9th placer on American Idol season 3. The other one is for Anne CurtisfANNEtastic fANNEatics. I am a true blue Anne Curtis fan down to the core until now so believe me when I say, it’s the person not the network that draws me to appreciate and love what they do.

So what draws me to Maine Mendoza and why we love her? Some reasons are similar to those two people I mentioned that I came to appreciate and idolize. Here are my top 5, which probably summarizes what everyone sees.

  • Raw Talent – some say dubsmashing is not much of a talent as most people can do it. Yes, I have read comments about Maine regarding, but I kept my mouth shut. Let us not waste our emotions toward negativity. Anyway, dubsmashing takes precision, concentration and talent. Without these 3, Maine will not be able to pull off that viral video on point. That’s raw talent for me and she has it. We appreciate rawness and see it blossom to what it truly is. That's what I see in her.

  • Passion to the Craft – as I have read on articles, heard interviews, Maine’s secret ultimate dream is to be an artist. If she does not have passion for this craft, she will always look awkward on those dubsmash videos. Compare other dubsmashes to hers, they do it for the fun of it or for the sake of doing it or having one to upload, she on the other hand does it with passion with a dash of craziness we all come to love.

  • Sincerity and Being True – you can see on her face the sincere appreciation of everything that she has been or being blessed with. Being true in a sense that despite her status in life (social stratification hint tayo haha), it doesn’t stop her from pulling those crazy scenes that others with same stature would feel awkward to. Not all people born with Silver spoon (oh sige baka iclaim niya na bronze lang), will have that comfort of doing what she does. I know you guys know what I mean. It's that what you see is what you get vibes that you get whenever.

  • Charisma – let’s face it, she is beautiful. Even more when made up, even more when she smiles like most people claim. But when simplicity comes into play, she oozes with charisma even more which fascinates a lot of people. I would have to assume that she has people drawn to her from all walks of life/all the masses. It’s, charisma and I know for a fact that it would not dwindle/fizzle. 

  • Regular Just Like the Rest of Us – I am sure, like most, you’ve spent countless hours on her Instagram, on her twitter handle, her blogsite perhaps and you would all agree that despite the rising fame, she’s a regular lass going through the adventure of life. Trekking towards her purpose, looking for that specific place in this world. With this, a lot can relate to, even the men that adore her. They may not be that expressive like us girls, but they are on the quest for their purpose in life as well. When people get to relate to your regular struggles, your life musings, your adventures and misadventures, it magnetizes them to you. The polarity of life so to speak. She has that claim on all of us. I've gone through some of the things she's going through and I relate to her like most of you.

Crap this is already long. I might stick to being a silent fan or from time to time surface out from hiding but know for a fact that we - I appreciate what you do Maine. Like I said on my other post, you give us an escape from the daily grind. I wish you a brighter future. Your journey has begun and your foothold to where you wanted to be and to your purpose is going to be stronger – yes I read your post about not knowing what to do or where to go. Here you are, the adventure has begun. Make the journey count.

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Aldub, What?

 (c) @mainedcm  | @aldenrichards02

I know the "Aldub, What?" title would perhaps initially elicit two raw emotions from those who have stumbled upon this blog post: 

  • Boiling point temper of those who are super into this tandem (with you people saying, “Humanda to sakin, ipapakilala ko kung ano ang Albub dito.”
  • Sparked curiosity as to what this blog post is all about (“Ano naman kayang pinagsasabi netong taong to.” - ayaw ako dalawin ng antok, so I had to write)
Hold emotions! Especially those who are on the boiling point. I am not writing about Aldub to bash the tandem or be a negatron. We have enough people breathing negativity every single day that’s why I think we owe those with creative minds who helped helm Aldub to what it is today with deepest gratitude.

Let me back track a little. That title, yes the “Aldub, What?” was my initial reaction when I heard some people at the office gushing about these two. I have not been keeping up with the trends lately, believe me I used to breath tweeting like it was a meal way back when and I was always on the loop, but not on this one apparently.

I’m probably one of the seemingly apathetic people you might come across, okay wait, key words “seemingly apathetic”, as people get surprised when I blurt out things like these to them. When I sought their vast knowledge (chos) about Aldub, they started relaying what usually happens on the “Juan for All, All for Juan” segment in Eat Bulaga!, realizing that the Yaya Dub is Maine Mendoza (yes I’ve laughed my arse loud on that viral Kris and Darla Dubsmash) and then Alden Richards, who I know just a little about (being truthful, peace tayo) – I do not watch local TV shows often, my apologies as I am more on a TV series binge watcher type (on long weekends pa or when sleep won’t come easy).

Like most – fuck it (whoops) A LOT of people, I got hooked. Every late afternoon after I appreciated the sunset from my workstation, you’ll get to hear me laughing. My co-workers would say, “Nanonood na ng Aldub yan.” Hey, I need to catch a break too right?

I’ve read/heard some people saying they don’t get why Aldub gets this much hype so I will try to round it off with my own 3 main reasons (for now):

  • Spontaneous Sparks: in my alma mater, we use this word “Sparks” to label a possible beginning of a love story. This was it for Yaya Dub (Maine) and Alden, they had sparks flying all over from the second Maine’s eyes twinkled seeing Alden on the monitor. A lot may have flunked Chemistry in high school or college but these two could make a non-chemist identify a new chemical element just looking at them.

  • Always Game: not referring to any sport but to the attitude of always being game with anything fun. Who could pull off that spontaneous pabebe wave after getting caught off guard with Alden watching you Dubsmash a crazy piece? Salute to Maine for that! I know it has become a part of their jobs but unscripted parts slip off the cracks once in a while and they get to pull it off like they are always game for anything.  

  • Dimples and Twinkling Eyes: oh, warning lang, medyo cheesy na part to (I think, antok na ako). "Bagay" would always be the word that comes out of people’s mouth whenever Aldub gets discussed (Sparks di ba?). For me, the main dead giveaways are those dimples (not Frankie’s, please lang) and those twinkling eyes when there’s real “kilig”. You would notice when things get real on the skit when Alden’s dimples get way too deep while smiling and Maine’s eyes twinkle like its brighter than sunshine. Observe it yourselves come next week, and see how you react when those dimples and twinkling eyes come out, that’s when your own “kilig” comes into play.

I have a few more to spew but I am feeling a little sleepy and I won’t dwell on how gorgeous both are, we all know it already. What are your reasons why Aldub is a phenomenon?

Just writing this because I couldn’t sleep and probably the best time to dust off the blog too. Cobwebs are everywhere on this place.

Thank you Maine and Alden for the escape from all the craziness you give us from Monday to Saturday. I am grateful with the laughter plus kilig that you bestow us earthlings and I have become a big fan. May your individual stars shine brighter than sunshine and their rays cross paths (hopefully very soon) so they could even be brighter. Best of luck with your careers! 

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