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CONCLUSION/DISCUSSION

          A number of K-Pop experts do not classify K-Pop dance covers groups as discourse communities or professional groups because they consider them as trends and the members as hard-core fans. However, they do have characteristics of discourse communities and genres. Johns’, Porters’, and Dirks’ articles enabled me to indirectly classify YouTube dance covers as a genre because I easily found examples of discourse community’s criteria. Through analysis of the dance cover videos of Ole Miss Generation, Koreos, and 5150 CREW, I was able to see dance covers as a subgenre or derivative of original K-Pop songs. Um and Kim helped me recognize the unique features of K-Pop, which I was able to use as the common features of all K-Pop videos. My primary research of personal interviews and a questionnaire gave me insights as to what Ole Miss Generation members value and what their interests are. Deriving from the sources, I was able to conclude that K-Pop fans with similar tastes and love for K-Pop form a discourse community on YouTube by imitating their favorite K-Pop groups and style. 

          Although the genre of YouTube as a communication method among K-Pop fans and cover dancers is not widely recognized, the strong value and interest in K-Pop fandom reached out and established other discourse communities, such as K-Pop cover dances. Ole Miss Generation, a specific discourse community located in the University of Mississippi, constructs K-Pop dance cover videos with common elements — introductory logos to introduce the groups, fake personas to understand the meaning of the Korean lyrics and the songs’ hidden stories, and the rigorous dance choreography to connect with the K-Pop artists more personally. The audience determines discourse and genres through interpretations of published works (Porter 38). Likewise, K-Pop fans did exactly what Porter emphasized to create a new phenomenal discourse community under the direction of the genre, or communication method — YouTube. YouTube provided space for producers and companies to share K-Pop music videos to the public and to everyone. Using original music videos as precedents and examples, K-Pop fans evolved the K-Pop genre to include dance covers. Without YouTube and other social media platforms, fans outside and inside South Korea cannot become one K-Pop phenomenon; in addition, K-Pop singers and groups cannot receive feedback and interact with fans. Without YouTube, K-Pop might not even exist. 

          Despite what I have learned about Ole Miss Generation and other dance cover groups, I was not able to research the art of K-Pop dance covers due to lack of scholarly secondary sources that directly correlated to YouTube dance covers as a genre, particularly for K-Pop. The specificity of the topic limited possible sources. Most sources defined K-Pop dance covers as a trend, not a genre or a community of fans. However, with indirect relations and considerable thoughts, I was able to connect the opinions about K-Pop genre to K-Pop dance covers. I would have looked more deeply into additional professional K-Pop dance cover groups, but due to the lack of time and large number of dance cover groups in YouTube, I was unable to fulfill the more thorough research. Ole Miss Generation is the only K-Pop dance cover group in the south according to co-founder Delaney Mason, and consequently, she would like to expand Ole Miss Generation off campus. However, not many people outside the discourse community approve the art of K-Pop dance cover. When I told a classmate that I am doing research on Ole Miss Generation and what the group does, the classmate frowned and even made a booing gesture. In addition, when the social media content manager of Ole Miss Generation asked me for confidentiality in my research, I immediately suspected the outside community’s unacceptance to K-Pop. I could have also researched deeply into the issue, but I decided to analyze K-Pop dance cover groups as discourse communities first before I could talk about the issues they are facing.

check out more k-pop dance cover crews!

Discover the art of K-Pop dance covers through YouTube!

K-TIGERS

K-Pop dance cover group who also do taekwondo. K-Tigers mix the original dance choreography with taekwondo moves, making the dance choreography unique with their own interpretation. 

FDS VANCOUVER

A K-Pop dance cover group in Vancouver performed the K-Pop in Public Challenge in the public streets of Vancouver. 

Want more K-Pop dance cover videos? 

Use the social media platform, YouTube, that enabled the K-Pop fans to expand their passion and interest in K-Pop. 

Try TikTok and Instagram as well!

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