Hey all! So I just returned from KCon LA, a Hallyu (Korean Entertainment) convention, and thought I'd tell you guys about the fanfiction panel I attended. There was a great general overview and then a conversation of popular tropes; ABO, cat!boy, coffee shop, and the like. This was interesting because aside from Kdrama character fics, they discussed at length the distinctions in RPF idol characters.

Their overview made me think about some intersections of Korean culture, homophobia, and gender stereotypes in fanfic. Topics I've wanted to examine at length but have no background in or people to converse with. For instance, is there a degree of Asian fetishism involved in RPF idol fic? Is that okay? How should we fans feel about reading or writing fic that often pairs young Korean men (no surprise most KPop fic is slash) together in a culture that is in general rejecting their LGBTQ+ community?

The panel ultimately made me think about the several times The OTP touched on writer and reader understanding of cultural sensitivity in the RPF and Anime podcasts. Yes, we are participating in fan culture where we should welcome all positive art forms and have a responsibility to be inclusive because our art is a reflection of our culture and ideals. So what is our responsibility when we are reading or writing about another culture with sometimes polar opposite general opinions?

Just throwing these ideas out here as writer who's trying to break into KPop fic as inoffensively as possible. I hope this makes sense. The biggest hurdle for me has been my growing awareness of how actively homophobic mainstream Korean society currently is and I'm trying to work through questions of social responsibility.
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