ARMY A: “the OP seemed to be taking issue with fans wanting to distance BTS from the stereotypes of the “Kpop”… but that this inadvertently implies that the stereotypes DO apply to other artists under that category… so they feel like it’s perpetuating the stereotype?”
I observe the purpose of removing the label of K-pop is to protect BTS from the label of being Korean, which is a marginalized group in the U.S. or European market. I think the idea of removing the K-pop label is the fans’ desire to “detour” to make BTS settle in those markets. However, the label is there not just because, but the members of BTS have Asian faces and they speak an Asian language (Korean). Removing the label in the light of media play would not remove their original identity. The racist stereotype comes from the uneducated Westerners by looking at their faces and hearing their spoken language, not exactly from the label that the media applies. So no matter how hard fans try to remove it for good, it will eventually come back in some other name, but with the same essential nature.
I also agree with ARMY A saying (although we admit the label contains a valid identity of BTS) “the label is more restrictive than liberating (in case of Nicki Minaj).” This is very true and it is true of any racial-stereotyped labels. But this restriction also makes their fans more loyal to BTS as it puts them into another underdog scenario. It is clearly a struggle, but it also bonds the fans to the artist and BigHit is probably well aware of the point as well. ARMY is willing to support BTS wanting to keep their way of making music in Korean. They clearly can decide to make songs in English if they want to, just like they have been doing to Japanese market, but they choose not to do so.
ARMY G: “I think it’s totally possible to recognize BTS’s association & roots in k-pop while also recognizing that they disrupted & transcended K-pop”
I think this is the point BTS and BigHit is aiming for. Some K-pop front runners already have tried the tactic of singing in English, etc., like Wonder Girls. But their promotion in the U.S. was not much of a success, and also a time of hardship for the very performers who were forced to learn the language in a short period of time and sing like they were native speakers. You know when people look down on you because you are not familiar enough with the language skill, something they achieved with no effort as someone grown in the culture but you did not. Of course the members have grown so much from the experience, and they became great musicians, like Sunmi or Ha:felt’s discography is beyond amazing, but all of them confessed that their U.S. promotion was very painful for young individuals to handle. BTS would want to keep their sharpest weapon, the music they produce in their most comfortable language, as long as possible. The greatest opportunity that ever happened to BTS up to today is the fact that fans around the world responded to their Korean-speaking music in the first place. I think BTS and BigHit have great hope in it.
“Are there opinions expressed that are potentially the result of misinformation? If yes, what?”
Most of them looked alright to me. I usually trust fans to be genuine in what they love and to inform themselves very well, sometimes much better than music critics. I mean it!