Koreaboos — not the ones who genuinely and respectfully love Korean culture — low-key make many Koreans uncomfortable. But how do other people feel about them? We found stories from people who are (or were) Koreaboo-adjacent, and their stories are so cringey that you won’t be able to stop yourself from grinding your teeth until there’s nothing left but enamel dust.

Source: The Good Place/NBC

Brace yourself, and perhaps put a mouth guard in, because some of these stories will definitely give you secondhand embarrassment!

These stories have not been edited and are presented in their original form, exactly as they were posted, and therefore may contain content that is offensive. We do not condone the use of bad language or slurs, so please read on with caution.

1. Grown-ups should know better than that

I have a friend let’s call him E, who has a Korean native friend, S. Both are good looking and fashionable they can easily pass as an idol. They’re quite popular on Instagram and have relatively huge active female followers. Now, E isn’t Korean at all, but all the thirsty females keep commenting oppa here and oppa there on both their Instagram when both of them are fluent in English. It has gotten worse since they found out E was a trainee at one of the Big 3 agencies. As for S, he sometimes goes on Instagram live and when he didn’t respond to comments or questions in Korean that was obviously constructed by Google Translate, they acted pissy. These females usually put that they live in Korea in their bio and put words Koreaboos use as a proof they speak Korean. I’d understand if these are tweens or teenagers, but there are an amount of them who are fully grown adults it’s embarrassing! I know it’s not my place to get irritated considering I’m not Korean myself, but as someone who’s studying the language seriously, it irks me when someone butchers a beautiful language. Heck, I bet both of them are also getting annoyed with the constant threads of “oppa!!1!” comments they get every time they post a picture!

—Anonymous

2. You can’t be “Korean on the inside”

oli4
Oli London

Ok so there’s this girl I sit with in my English class and she is a full on koreaboo. She has stated on countless occasions that she feels she was meant to be born Korean. Her face always looks greasy but to her it’s the trendy dewy skin Korean girls try to achieve. She always talks about kpop but as soon as someone else starts talking about the music they’re interested in, koreaboo says “shut up nobody cares about your music tastes.”
I’m a no bullshit kind of person so I’ve pointed out that claiming to be Korean is disrespectful to actual Koreans because it’s generalising their culture. Being Korean isn’t a trend. Koreaboo’s argument was “I’m Korean on the inside.” Yikes.
Worst of all, a new kid started at our school. He’s Asian (I’m guessing Vietnamese) but whether he is or not, koreaboo has already fallen in love with him and refers to him as ‘senpai’. Apparently she ‘sarangs’ him. I’m so sick of white people’s bullfuckery which is saying a lot since I’m white myself.

—Anonymous

3. You don’t need a Korean nickname

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there’s really no reason to pick up a korean name if you’re not korean… you’ll notice that plenty (maybe all??) of non-korean (and even international korean) celebrities or public figures keep their native names and korean ppl learn to pronounce them just fine. so yes it would be offensive / koreaboo to do so

—Anonymous

4. Koreaboos have a negative effect on Korean diaspora

girls generation tiffany young
Beloved Korean American K-Pop artist Tiffany Young

Thank you thank you thank you for this blog. I am korean american. born in the US, raised in the US, parents from korea though. I can read, write, and speak korean fluently. Up till now I always felt very uncomfortable and horrible about this topic (koreaboos) but felt like nobody understood me. As a korean american, identity is such a conflicting issue anyway, but koreaboos make it so much worse. I hope to submit more in the story part of the blog later, but for now I’d just like to thank you.

—Anonymous

5. Existing as Asian =/= Here for fetishization

My older brother and I are Chinese, and a tiny bit Korean. I’d say my brother’s pretty handsome and attractive. He’s really smart and is taking a lot of courses, which I’m super proud of. A few of the girls in my brother’s grade (11) admire him and crush on him because, I shit you not, say he’s “the perfect Korean Idol!!!111” and it really pisses me off when they try to act cutesy around him to gain his attention. He really hates fake people and overdone girls. The girls don’t care about the fact that he’s smart, or he has a little social anxiety, or any of the factors leading up to his personality. It’s as if they only care that he’s cute and tall and “everything a boy band member should be!!”. Every time I talk to him in the hallways or walk with him home some girl gives me the evil eye. Like, I’m his sister?? What’s wrong with that?? He has a strong dislike for Koreaboos and Weeaboos, but when a crazed fangirl asks him out he’s always mindful to let the down slowly. Over time, some of the girls started to realize I was a “dear Abby” column just waiting to be exploited. They started asking me what he looked like just out of the shower, his favorite foods, tv shows, etc, and two girls even asked me to snag a photo of him (preferably sleeping). How fucking overboard and obsessed??? I always told them “I’m his sister, don’t be creepy”.

Meanwhile, in my grade, a few people are convinced that I would “make a perfect girl group member” and constantly harass me to dance or sing for them. I’m pretty good at singing and regularly participate in the school choir, but koreaboos have regularly expressed disappointment that I’m singing in English. Good thing is my older brother (who towers over most people) helps ward off creep-o’s. The two of us are really annoyed and we really hate having to express desires for personal space every. single. day.

—Anonymous

6. If you’re not Korean, you’re not Asian…?

lisa glasses 45
BLACKPINK’s Lisa is Thai, and also, most definitely Asian

So im half European and half Japanese from my dad’s side. I’m European and Chinese from my mom’s side. A couple years back I moved to a new neighborhood and I obviously went to introduce myself to my new neighbors. A few houses down there was this girl let’s name her Liv (not her real name). Liv and i had a lot in common. We both liked K-Pop and K-Dramas. Being the awkward emo/K-Pop loving bean I am when I invited her to my bedroom I asked her if she wanted to help me hang up my posters which were all over my bed so we can watch a drama. The whole time we hung up the postes she called me ,,noona” which is like so confusing to me cuz I was younger than her. When I picked up a Jae (Day6) poster all shit went down. She started screaming and hugging me while talking how her ,,Jae oppa” was so precious and soft. Then when I hung up all of the posters we watched Hwarang. She didn’t even watch it. SHE TRIED DOING AEGYO THE WHOLE MURFRACKING TIME. Than she started blurting out random words like ,,jagiya” (which is like DUDE CHILL) and ,,saranghae”. She used the word ,,sunbaenim” after everything she said, she called me ,,kyeopta” all the time. When my phone rang (my ringtone is DEAD! by MCR) she told me we couldn’t be friends because I was faking my Korean image and that I shouldn’t have told her i was Asian if i wasn’t (WHICH I TOLD HER I WAS JAPANESE/CHINESE/EUROPEAN HOW TF DID SHE NOT KNOW I WAS ASIAN) and she pulled the corners of her eyes upwards till they were lowkey closed and started talking in a very bad Asian accent. I told her I was Asian and she shouldn’t do that cuz it’s hurtful but she just left screaming how I wasn’t Asian cuz I wasn’t Korean and I was faking my love for K-Pop cuz I wasn’t Korean and I had no right to listen to K-Pop if I liked emo stuff. I really don’t understand people. This is why you shouldn’t socialize kids.

—Anonymous

7. Koreans are people, not products

Before the hallyu wave nobody cared about Koreans or wanted to know about our culture. The fact that Koreaboos are suddenly seeing Koreans as useful to them because of pop culture shows how precarious our humanity is to them. Whether we deserve to be acknowledged as more than just racial slurs is tied to what we can offer Koreaboos and as soon as we try to tell them that Korean culture wasn’t created for them to claim then racist love becomes entitled racist hate. We’re products to them, really.

—Anonymous

8. There’s more than one dialect

korean bts ft

As a Korean who has had to deal with so many Koreaboos I have to say your blog is actually very refreshing. I enjoyed reading your FAQ list and going through your stories. I remember meeting two girls who spoke moderate to ok Korean and they asked me for help. So, I spoke with them, but I speak Korean with a southern accent (경상도 사투리) and the girls thought I was faking being able to speak Korean, so they started trying to correct me and teach ME how to talk. It was pretty fucking weird.

—Anonymous

9. When non-Koreans gatekeep what it means to be Korean

Hey! First of all your blog is amazing, lol. I have a friend who’s half black and half Korean and she’s always told by other white kpop fans that she’s ‘too black’ to be korean. She feels so bad tbh, because she identifies with both of her ethnicities.

—Anonymous

10. Only Koreans can be attractive, apparently

Angelababy
Angelababy

I cannot stand how arrogant Koreaboos can be. They will literally shit on everything and anything that is not Korean. For example, let’s say some Jpop group releases a song that just so happens to look a bit more “kpop” (if that’s a saying), and in the comments section, all you will see is twelve year old kpop fans yelling and accusing the band of “copying” or “plagiarizing”. It’s fucking annoying.

China bought the rights to Running Man (it was a mutual agreement—profit for both companies). There was this one episode where the Chinese Running Man cast was put against the Korean cast (for fun, ofc lmao). Kwangsoo is a HUGE Angelababy fan (she is a Chinese A-list model and celeb in both China and Japan). So, the dude is crushing on her and whatnot cause she’s quite adorable, and so Angelababy flirts back as a joke—-all you effing see in the comments section is “Jihyo is better. Angela is plastic, Jihyo is not.” or “Angela is a whore.” or my favorite “Why did they even a hire a whore on the show?” <<< I mean, really??? They’re degrading their own gender. That is just stupid. There were also comments like “China stole running man from Korea” (lmao) or “China shouldn’t even deserve the show.” and “Koreans are the best. Screw the Chinks.” I literally died of laughter at the last comment. Racism is never necessary, and these Koreaboos just proved their ignorance and stupidity even further. They do not realize that China and South Korea are friends in terms of economic policies. This is why there are so many Chinese-Korean bands debuting and China buying Korean shows. I guess you can say these two countries have a symbiotic relationship.

Koreaboos, oh Koreaboos. When will you learn to refrain from saying unnecessary crap? All Asians are equal in nature’s eyes— it’s just you select people who choose to be judgmental idiots. The sad thing is (besides them thinking Koreans are the best Asians to exist since the evolution of homo-sapiens), some of these Koreaboos who shame and bash other Asians are Asian themselves—and they are not even Korean. I have witnessed on multiple occasions where even Chinese girls say “Luhan/Wu Yifan is too attractive to be Chinese. I he was Korean.” ?????? WTF????

Ugh, this is just frustrating. As a half Chinese, I am so annoyed. Leave my people alone, Koreaboos. Spare them.

—Anonymous