Over the past 17 years, K-pop has exponentially gained more and more international exposure and popularity thanks to its role in Hallyu or the Korean Wave. It is by far the most popular way of expanding Korean culture internationally. However, with such an exponential expansion, K-pop acts now have more crowds to cater to than just Koreans. This, in turn, means that certain sensitivities of these countries must be learned.
When it comes to K-pop fans in the United States, many acts have to learn the people’s sensitivities to racism, especially towards the Black (or African-American/Haitian-American) community. Taeyang of Big Bang was suddenly thrust into the limelight when he wished K-pop fans, especially V.I.P.s (official fan club of Big Bang), a Happy Lunar New Year back in 2016. He used a facial simulator to make himself look like Kanye West saying “Happy monkey new year.” As many Americans know, there is a derogatory association between black people and monkeys.