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The downfall of K-Pop BNS in the ‘new normal’

The downfall of K-Pop BNS in the ‘new normal’

Collecting merchandise of their favorite artists has always been a part of K-Pop culture. Albums, lightsticks, photocards, postcards, posters, dolls, slogans, shirts, and even slippers! Literally anything you can think of, K-Pop agencies are surely to milk the fans’ wallets through their irresistible launches.

Of course, no judgment here, K-Pop fans love completing these collectibles, regardless of the amount they spend on each item. While it is the artist and company’s source of income, it is the fandom’s source of happiness. Buy and Sell, or BNS virtual marketplace inside the K-Pop community, mostly on stan Twitter, is where you find them. The demand for it definitely increased during the peak lockdown era, when fans decided to enter the fun hobby.

The end of an era

Now that everything is slowly getting back to normal, or what we call the ‘new norm’, K-Pop collectors are shifting. We could not deny the number of fans who collectively just left the market and decided to focus elsewhere. Is it a hobby? Is it a phase? Who knows? One thing is for sure: this result caused the downfall of K-Pop BNS.

Have you ever wondered why? Here are some reasons why I believe so!

Lack  of interest

People come and go — may it be on the artist or the merchandise, some fans are bound to lose interest. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with it! So many thoughts must have been running through their heads before eventually unstanning or doing a quitting sale. But it is what it is.

Fan Meetings and Concerts

Because of the abolishment of heavy pandemic restrictions, physical events slowly came back to life. Including fan meetings and concerts of Korean superstars, giving excitement to K-Pop fans. Between seeing my idols on stage or on a piece of paper, I would obviously swerve to the concert lifestyle! It is no surprise why ex-collectors chose to save up for events instead of stacking up plastic and paper collectibles.

Priorities in expenses change

Not everything are rainbows and skittles; eventually, we face the reality of choosing between survival needs and merchandise wants. The K-Pop world of collecting temporarily gave our dull world a brighter perspective. But sooner or later, fans would have to prioritize their costly commitments outside of K-Pop. Well… it was fun while it lasted!

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The hype simply dies

If you belong to a fandom, you would understand how it heavily influences fans’ perspectives, especially in a repeated cycle. In K-Pop BNS, I am very convinced that some of them were only convinced by co-fans in the first place. It is simply because that is the common behavior they see inside the fandom. And of course, when one kills the hype, the other follows; no more thrills, no more competitors, and so on. It is the domino effect.

A journey for keeps

When a K-Pop collector raises the white flag for their collection, it does not necessarily mean their admiration fades. Sometimes it does, but that is another story to tell. After all, the number of merchandise or amount we spend does not measure our love and support for the idols. Not to mention, collecting is an extremely expensive hobby that one should not enter rashly; been there, done that.

K-Pop BNS may not seem like it used to be, but the memory remains. Those chaotic days of impulsively buying a merch, only to put it up for sale the following days. The intense discussion of which photocards are considered to have the best sparks. Friendly advice or heated exposing threads that had everyone tuning in for BNS chikas every week. And when the time comes, I’ll look back at the darkest corner of my shelf, where my sparkly binder rests. As proof of my BNS efforts, I’d then proudly say, “I’m glad I was once a part of this journey.” 

Do you also think the K-Pop BNS is slowly dying? Share with us in the comments!

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