"BTS is now leading the 'Korean Pride' in the global stage. It's not something that can be done with no true talent," Kim Kyo-seok, a pop-culture critic, told Aju News. He predicted BTS' global popularity would bring nothing but positive effects to all related industries in South Korea.
BTS was given "Top Duo/Group" award at Billboard's annual music awards event in Las Vegas. BTS also won the "Top Social Artist" award for three consecutive years. Leader RM attributed group's success to the power of its international fan club, ARMY, and reminded fans that the band has remained unchanged from its debut six years ago.
Like Son Heung-min, a South Korean winger for Tottenham Hotspur, BTS is representing South Korea by becoming a top player in the global music scene, Kim said. "BTS' success in the global music scene has greatly contributed to the K-pop industry, and the group's global status will provide great opportunities for other K-pop artists, especially young and talented rookies."
As RM said, BTS has come a long way to become a globally popular band since it debuted in 2013. The band started off as an ordinary boy group in the K-pop scene and did not gain much attention for several years. However, BTS members have actively communicated with fans through social media by creating video clips which showed their daily life off the stage.
Overseas fans started to recognize BTS when it released "WINGS", the group's second full album, in 2016, singing about the pain of growing up in its title song, "Blood Sweat & Tears". Fans voluntarily translated the lyrics into dozens of languages and shared them over social media and fan communities. Ever since then, translating BTS songs has now become a trend that contributed to boosting the group's global popularity.
BTS continued to sing words of consolation targeting the young generation which shared the same sentiment regardless of their race, age and culture. The boys launched a "Love Yourself" campaign in the concept of unconditional self-acceptance and self-respect in 2017 with "LOVE YOURSELF: Her".
The album's title song "DNA" has put BTS among the ranks of global artists by garnering more than 20 million views on YouTube in less than 21 hours. DNA broke the 20 million mark on YouTube faster than "Bad Blood", American singer Taylor Swift's song released in 2014, and "Wrecking Ball", a 2013 song by American singer Miley Cyrus.
More global music fans recognized BTS after the success of other albums "LOVE YOURSELF: Tear" and "LOVE YOURSELF: Answer". According to Google, the growth rate of BTS' popularity accelerated in 2017 and reached its peak in May 2018 when "LOVE YOURSELF: Tear" was released. The rate is projected to reach its peak again in May this year, thanks to "MAP OF THE SOUL : PERSONA", the group's new album released in April.
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