Article

Manufacturing Creativity: Production, Performance, and Dissemination of K-pop

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Abstract

The rise of K-pop (Korean pop) as a new global music genre has wrought theoretical turmoil within the field of cultural studies. This article argues that the global ascendance of K-pop can primarily be attributed to the passionate support of inter-Asian audiences. However, the actual production, performance, and dissemination of K-pop contents have little to do with the Asian pop-culture system. Although the manufacture of K-pop music and its performers depends on Korean talent and management, K-pop producers tend to rely heavily on the global music industries of North America and Europe for their creative content. The global dissemination of K-pop would not have been possible without global social network service (SNS) sites such as YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter-none of which are owned or operated by Asians. This article argues that the manufacturing of creativity in non-Western music, as illustrated by the case of Hallyu, involves three stages: globalization of creativity, localization of musical contents and performers, and global dissemination of the musical contents through social media.

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... They argued that the condition for the prevalence of music piracy in Korea that was facilitated by the government's implementation of the copyright regulations had a positive effect on the enhanced competitiveness of K-pop. Other scholars have focused on information communication technology (ICT) infrastructure and digital transformations in the music industry [13][14][15]. For example, Parc and Kim (2020) [15] highlighted the impact that the all-encompassing digitisation process had on the Korean music industry and how the music businesses across the industry proactively adapted to these changes. ...
... There are three main schools of thoughts found in this stream of research. Firstly, K-pop, which is based on the Korean cultural values, was able to penetrate other Asian markets more easily, as Korea and other Asian countries share similar cultural values [14,21,22]. Second, K-pop's success beyond the Asian markets into the Western and the global markets may be explained in terms of cultural hybridity [21,[23][24][25][26]. ...
... He focused on the process of localising global musical contents by the Korean music businesses and linkages they formed with transnational social media platforms. Using a similar approach adopted by Oh (2013) [34], Park (2013) [14] also emphasised the process of outsourcing music creation to foreign producers, localising musical contents and utilising social media channels for music distribution. ...
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The global music market has witnessed the rapid rise of Korean pop music, K-pop, in recent years. While there has been an increased interest of scholars from various disciplines to account for the global success of K-pop, limited attention has been paid to the key players in the industry, music businesses. Based on a historical analysis of Korea’s music industry, we contend that the innovative production system of Korea’s music businesses has played a significant role in facilitating K-pop’s global success. In order to provide theoretical support to the argument, this paper critically reviews the existing literature to present debates on (i) the process of how value is created in distinctive stages in the music industry; (ii) cooperative and competitive interactions between firms within the music industry; and (iii) changes in the music industry’s competitive environment.
... Its rapid developments made KPop very influential toward South Korea's development (G. Kim, 2017;Park, 2013). In 2012, its entertainment industry grossed US$3.4 bil- lion, influencing a US$412 increase in consumer goods exports for every US$100 increase in cultural exports. ...
... Kim, 2017;S.-Y. Kim, 2016;Marinescu & Balica, 2013;Oh & Lee, 2013;Oh & Park, 2012;Park, 2013), with a few exceptions (M. Kim et al., 2014;Meza & Park, 2014), to provide complementary insights. ...
... KPop idols are trained to be very skilled in sing- ing and dancing via a creative, innovative, and meticulously managed production process of overall conceptualization, song composition, and choreography development (Y.-J. Choi, 2011;Oh & Park, 2012;Park, 2013), significantly influencing audio and visual components. Afterwards, one song and music video are used to promote an entire album, similarly broken down into discernable audio and visual components influencing consumer purchase intentions. ...
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This research employs a mix of theoretical and data-driven approaches to understand how Korean pop music (KPop) consumption, despite physical and social barriers, is currently at unprecedented levels. The stimulus-organism-response (S-O-R) model was used as a basis to examine factors regarding influencing KPop’s popularity on non-Koreans, focusing on production and consumer-based factors inducing their attitudes and preferences. Data gathered from 951 Taiwanese and 949 Philippine survey respondents were analyzed through structural equation modeling (SEM), in which 13 of the hypothesized 16 direct, mediating, and moderating relationships were supported. This research demonstrates how, through appropriate theoretical lenses supported by empirically tested data, production-based factors of visual and audio components can sway favorable attitudes and preferences under customer-based contextual factors, including peer pressure, self-efficacy, and media. This guides producers to appreciate cultural nuances affecting KPop’s global popularity, and the importance of deciding the product mix strategies best suited for different markets.
... The Philippines is a growing KPop market, but little academic research presenting a deeper discourse on this context exists (Igno and Cenidoza, 2016), specifically advocating a more critical approach in KPop consumption decisions. Furthermore, empirical discourse on KPop is also substantially lacking in the current pool of research, where there are mostly qualitative in nature (Kim, 2017;Oh and Lee, 2013;Oh and Park, 2012;Parc and Moon, 2013;Park, 2013). Analysing phenomenon in different contexts is always a valuable addition to studies on international products (van der Lans et al., 2016). ...
... KPop production and distribution is very intense (Chen, 2016), honing idols to be very skilled and talented in various aspects of entertainment, requiring extreme creativity and innovation to support the talent through overall conceptualisation, song composition, fashion styles, and choreography development, all meticulously managed and executed (Choi, 2011;Kim, 2017;Oh and Park, 2012;Park, 2013). This is a testament on how much producers keep in mind the importance of developing excellent audio and visual components to create and deliver the product (Kim, 2017). ...
... And this becomes more critical with sung music, in which the inclusion of the quality of lyrics and voice complement the aforementioned elements (Feld and Fox, 1994). For KPop, the music production follows a very meticulous creative process of conceptualising and composing songs (Choi, 2011;Park, 2013), taking critical considerations of these combinations and interactions of the aforementioned music elements in the hopes of achieving instantaneous positive feedback. ...
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Hallyu’s success has caught the attention of academic research of various fields of expertise. This research endeavours to understand what makes Korean Pop music popular to Filipinos, addressing two research gaps: the lack of empirical management discourse, and the lack of focus on the Philippine KPop market. This research employs a theoretical model derived from an academic and practical product development and consumer behaviour discourse. Data collected from 932 Filipino respondents was subjected to several statistical tests, including exploratory factor analysis ( EFA ), hierarchical regression, and analysis of variance ( ANOVA ). The results suggest that Filipino KPop fans are more concerned about the external environment that influences what is popular, rather than what looks and sounds good. Furthermore, KPop fan behaviour homogeneously cuts across age, gender, and backgrounds. This presents several useful theoretical and managerial implications enhancing the overall picture of KPop’s international impact.
... The influence of Korean popular culture (K-pop) now extends beyond South Korea's national borders and has made K-pop a global phenomenon. 1,2,3 Korean music videos on YouTube have comments in multiple languages; 4 on Facebook, fans from various continents have constructed country-specific fan pages; and tickets for K-pop concerts in non-Asian countries are selling out in minutes. 5 While the global influence of K-pop in terms of its music and other entertainment genres is undeniable, the full commercial impact of this Hallye, or Korean Wave, sweeping across the world is still unclear. ...
... JCMS0081_ZHANG.indd3 16/07/20 5:48 PM ...
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This study investigates how the consumption of South Korean popular culture (K-pop) media content influences the behavioural intention of international audiences with respect to the purchase of South Korean products. Based on a survey of international K-pop audiences, the authors examine the mediating effects of imitation intention, attitude towards Korean culture and attitude towards Korean products. The results reveal that both frequency and the number of hours of K-pop consumption significantly predicted participants’ intention to imitate their favourite K-pop celebrity, while attitude towards Korean culture and products was significantly predicted by frequency of K-pop consumption but not the number of hours of consumption. At the same time, attitude towards Korean products was found to be a strong predictor of international audiences’ purchase intention, while attitude towards Korean culture was found to be a weak predictor and imitation intention was found to be an ineffective predictor of intention to purchase Korean products. This study clarifies, at the international level, the influence of K-pop media content consumption on the intention to purchase Korean products. In this way, it confirms and explains how K-pop acts as a key cultural marketing strategy for South Korea in international markets.
... This so-called in-house production system needs a guarantee that their final product can be sold and befitting with market demand [6]. As a product, the trainee gets training not only for their talent in singing, dancing, and acting but they also learning languages, presenting on camera, public speaking, culture education and many more [7]. The training period varies from several months to several years. ...
... In the process of producing the music, SM Entertainment has a strategy that is quite different through the process of outsourcing creativity by working with top experts in the fields of music, performance, and choreography [7]. Girls Generation's hit song Genie was composed by Design Group from Europe, Yu Yeong-jin, SM's producer, writes the lyrics and arrangement, and the dance choreography created by Rino Nakashi Razalan. ...
... Beberapa tahun terakhir banyak publikasi literatur yang berfokus dan membahas tentang orang-orang yang terpesona dengan selebriti, dan sering sampai pada titik obsesi yang kemudian dikenal dengan Celebrity Worshippers atau pemuja selebriti/idola (Brooks, 2018 (Suparjan, 2016). Seurune, Jurnal Psikologi Unsyiah ISSN: 2614-6428 Vol. 4. No. 1, Bulan Januari 2021E ISSN: 2655 Dari beberapa studi terlihat bagaimana selebriti dapat membentuk sikap, perilaku, dan kepercayaan seseorang (Brooks, 2018 (Park, 2013). Sejak pertengahan 1990an fenomena kecintaan terhadap negeri ginseng Korea Selatan sudah mulai terlihat, baik itu dari segi musiknya, maupun perfilmannya (Oelfy, 2015). ...
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Pemujaaan selebriti adalah bentuk dari hubungan satu arah yang terjadi terhadapseseorang dan tokoh idolanya, yang membuat seseorang menjadi terobsesiterhadap selebriti idolanya tersebut. Hadirnya budaya korea di Aceh terlihat darikemunculan komunitas penggemar idola dari Korea, berbentuk akun fanbase sampaikomunitas yang melakukan aktivitas bersama secara langsung. Tujuan daripenelitian ini untuk mengetahui tingkatan pemujaan selebriti pada komunitaspenggemar K-Pop di Aceh, serta faktor sosiodemografi apa saja yang memengaruhipemujaan selebriti. Penelitian ini menggunakan pendekatan kuantitatif denganmetode deskriptif. Teknik penentuan sampel menggunakan sampling jenuh, yaitu300 anggota yang bergabung di komunitas BTS Army (193) dan EXOL (107) Aceh.Pemujaan selebriti diukur menggunakan The Celebrity Attitude Scale (CAS). Hasilpenelitian menunjukkan pemujaan selebriti pada kedua komunitas berada padaberbagai tingkatan, yaitu 34,2% berada di tingkat pemujaan selebriti tinggi(Borderline-Pathological), 33.9% berada di tingkat pemujaan selebriti sedang(Intense-Personal), dan 31.9% berada di tingkat pemujaan selebriti rendah(Entertainment-Social). Berdasarkan sosiodemografi pengisian skala, anggotakomunitas lebih banyak berjenis kelamin perempuan, berada pada rentang usiaremaja, mahasiswa, berstatus lajang, dan memiliki satu orang idola.
... vities have yet to be actively angulated within the shifting scholarly positions on the agency and value of prosumer-oriented co-creative labor. In some respects, K-pop fits into the sensationalized images of fanatical consumers fuelling an industry of exploited performers of manufactured performances (Connelly, 2017;Kwan, 2017, pp. 42-43;Oh, 2015;G. S. Park, 2013;Williams & Ho, 2016;Wozny, 2010). On one hand, the reproducibility of these manufactured performances underlines the absence of historical authenticity or "aura" (Benjamin, 1969;Reynoso, 2019). On the other hand, K-pop fandom has been critically acknowledged as relatively autonomous communities, mobilizational networks and creative cultu ...
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The worldwide popularity of South Korean popular music has generated global consumer demand for variations of its grueling training regimen offered by talent recruitment agencies and dance studios. Using the case study of the South Korean popular music boot camps offered by the Australia-based agency, The Academy, this article seeks to frame these performative engagements along more cosmopolitan notions of choreographic co-creative labor. In contrast to the highly competitive South Korean popular music machinery, participation in these boot camps can be characterized as affective prosumer “free labor” from trainees from diverse backgrounds, abilities, and motivations. Through programs that enable trainees to “re-present,” “re-organize,” and “re-interpret” K-pop dance performances, studios like The Academy leverage on K-pop’s popularity and its training pedagogies so as to open new fields of creative labor. Accompanying such openings are the strengthening transnational connectivities in the activities of The Academy in intensifying existing multicultural networks in Australia. The studio is also part of a more cosmopolitan platform in orienting traditionally Eurocentric mainstream Australia culturally toward the Asia-Pacific region. By further democratizing the dance abilities of K-pop choreographies, initiatives like The Academy serve in enlarging creative labor in transnational rhythmic communities.
... Hallyu, which has meanwhile gone through several cycles (Song 2020), has popularized at a global level the most diverse sectors of Korean creative content, from music (Park 2013) to TV fiction (Schulze 2013), fashion (Park 2011), food (Shin et al. 2014), etcetera. This phenomenon has generated a vast fandom not only in the Far East (Yang 2012), but also in the West (Hübinette 2012), Middle East (Otmazgin and Lyan 2014), South America (Pagliuso Regatieri 2017), and the Muslim world (Oh and Chae 2013;Oh 2017), turning into a powerful cultural diplomacy resource for the country (Jang and Paik 2012). ...
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Fictional narratives cannot be considered as mere escapist entertainment, and have a significant social cognition potential. Their study is also important in understanding the mechanisms of behavioral change, as many fictions focus on processes of personal transformation of the main characters. Romantic fictions are of special interest in this regard, as the formation of a new couple entails negotiation and mutual adaptation between partners, with possible transformation of personal attitudes, value orientations, and behaviors: ‘marrying’ a new idea or cause is, tellingly, the strongest possible metaphorical statement of adoption. Korean TV series (K-dramas) are a particularly interesting source of case studies in this regard due to the specific characteristics of their production system. We analyze a K-drama, My Ajussi, where the lead characters go through a complex process of personal change, through the lens of the so-called Tie-Up Theory, which has proven useful in the analysis and interpretation of fictional representations of human mating processes, and show how the context provided by the potential formation of the couple between the two main characters provides us with valuable insights about human behavioral change and for policy design strategies to tackle societal challenges.
... Gangnam Style has reached up to 1.7 billion views on YouTube, becoming the most-liked video in the site's history and topped the charts in over forty-one countries. What is more, the mere fact that small towns in South America, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East know the "horse dance" of Gangnam Styleis an unexplainable achievement-not done justice by words (Park, 2015).The global dissemination of Korean popular culture such as Gangnam Style would not have been possible without global social media or social network service (SNS) sites (Park, 2013). ...
... Kwon would go on to direct several of Jackson's subsequent MVs, and the MVs of many top Korean popular musicians such as BTS, Henry Lau, and Jay Park. Similar to the K-pop industry in general (G.-S.Park, 2013b), the behind-the-scenes creativity and production of Jackson's solo music utilizes Korean, European, and American talents, even though he emphasizes his Chinese identity to demonstrate his sense of belonging and to cater to the Chinese market. Although ...
Thesis
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Hallyu, or the Korean Wave, has become a global cultural phenomenon. Its growing popularity around the world is indicative of the rise in Asian cultural power. Before entering the markets beyond East Asia, South Korean popular culture was first transmitted in China in the 1990s. Korean popular music, or K-pop, has been a key genre in Hallyu. By employing archival research and case studies, and unveiling rarely considered materials and practices, this dissertation analyzes the constant transmission of K-pop in China in the past two decades, contemporary K-pop fan practices in China, and Chinese K-pop idols’ multiple identity presentations to answer the research question—why is K-pop popular in China. I propose a periodization of K-pop in China based on the different media environment in China after K-pop’s initial entrance into the Chinese market in 1996. Thus, I looked at K-pop in China in the analog media period (1996-2004), the pre-mobile internet period (2005-2011), and the mobile internet period (2012-present). The dissertation first examines the history of K-pop in China. Secondly, the current study uses the Chinese fandom of the male idol group GOT7 as a case study to examine contemporary Chinese K-pop fan practices from the perspectives of fan consumption and fan production. Along with the categorizations of fan consumption and fan production, I postulate that fan labor has become an indispensable part in the operation of the K-pop industry, transforming it into an alternative creative industry. Lastly, I examine the multiple identity presentations of Chinese K-pop idols by looking at the case of GOT7’s Hong Kong-born Chinese member Jackson as well as the political and fandom controversies engendered by such presentations. The dissertation potentially sheds new light on Hallyu studies, Korean studies, and the studies of transnational cultural flows. It also brings new insight to fandom studies and cultural industry studies. It is my hope that the exploration of Chinese K-pop idols will also foster a rethinking of Chua Beng Huat’s (2001, 2012) Pop Culture China in cultural studies, and spark new discussions in celebrity studies.
... For example, a classical case explains how local radio stations ushered in a new era of rock music in the U.S., whereas the dismantling of the industrial concentration in the music industry in the country created a boom in African American music. In a similar vein, it is unassailable to witness the rise of Kpop due to smart phone devices and YouTube, because a new form of manufacturing creativity through a global division of labor is now possible (Oh 2013;Park 2013). None of these extant studies have been discussed at length in this book, while no new theory or perspective has been offered by any in the volume to fill the theoretical vacuum. ...
... Pacis (2012) performed a study on the expanding world of K-Pop fandom as a subculture. Park (2013) saw the production, performance, and dissemination of K-Pop as an example of manufactured creativity. Parc and Moon (2013) explored the key factors for the international competitiveness of Korean TV soap operas and movies as part of the growing K-Pop culture. ...
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