So, yes- Koreaboos are a thing. They exist, and they can be annoying, but whatever. Do your thing. Hopefully they grow out of it though. This post will not be about all of the annoying things that Koreaboos tend to do. Instead, this post will be about how to differentiate between someone who is a Koreaboo, and someone who is not. Because apparently, there is a lot of confusion surrounding this topic.
Some things commonly used to identify Koreaboos are-
They listen to K-Pop
They watch K-Dramas
They write fanfiction (about people associated with the previous two)
None of those things indicate a Koreaboo. Someone liking K-Pop just means they like music, regardless of the language. Someone liking K-Dramas just means they like a TV show that they need subtitles for. Writing fanfiction is something a lot of people do if they like a certain celebrity, and why would that change just because the person is of a different race? Also, it’s a good way to improve a person’s writing skills in a way they can enjoy. Learning Korean is probably the worst reason to label someone as a Koreaboo, because it’s a language. People are typically required to learn a foreign language in high school, and for a lot of schools, the options are limited to Spanish or French. So, it’s totally understandable as to why you might want to learn something other than those two. Besides, there’s nothing wrong with challenging yourself to learn a new language, and it looks good on applications, especially since it’s less common for people to know Korean as a second, (third, fourth, etc), language than it would be for Spanish or French. In short, having an interest in something that happens to be Korean does not make you a Koreaboo.
So what does make someone a Koreaboo?
The short and general answer would be OBESSION. However, fangirling does not qualify, because it’s likely that someone would fangirl over any celebrity they like, not just Korean ones. Let’s just jump right into this and list a few things that make a person a Koreaboo-
They act like they know everything about Korea
They try to look Korean
They try to ‘act’ Korean
They get overly excited about everything remotely related to Korea
Only listen to Korean music (+ brag about it)
Are only attracted to Asians
If they find someone attractive only because they are Asian (not even necessarily Korean, because they don’t care about the difference)
Only eat Korean foods and get upset if they can’t
If they lie and say they are Korean or that they lived in Korea
Only use common Korean phrases, and use them often (ex. 안녕하세요, 진짜, 누나, 오빠, 언니, etc), usually with horrible pronunciation, and use romanization when writing/typing them (this one is more of just an annoying habit people may have, because no one has a problem with the random use of Spanish words like hola or adios)
There are plenty of other things a lot of Koreaboos do, and not all of them do ALL of these things. I’ve just listed some common indicators. Now, this post is already rather lengthy, (I could go on and on), so I’ll state the main difference in bold text.
The difference between someone who is a Koreaboo and someone who isn’t is:
Having an interest in something that happens to be Korean vs. Having an interest in something because it is Korean.
This post is not meant to shame anyone, and PLEASE feel free to explore your interests without fear of judgement, because you have that right. And if something makes you happy, just tell that annoying ranting girl on Tumblr to fuck off, and go be yourself. Just maybe take it down a few notches, because you low key seem a little crazy sometimes. Also, if you are interested in something that happens to be Korean and you want to try something else from there (like kimchi or 비빔밥) GO AHEAD. I only made this post, because so many people accuse others of being Koreaboos with literally zero backup for their claim. So, think before you label, or just keep your judgey mouth shut, thanks.