So… since nobody has really posted anything other than VpopFan himself. I will make the first comment(?) What do you guys think (however many of you there are, let’s be real here) about how Vpop has affected the Viet Kieu community. Seeing as how it is exceptionally more exposed to American and Korean pop. As well, I would like to bring up the context of the newer Viet Kieu generations steadily losing connection to our past culture.
Việt Kiều and Vpop
For the most part, I don’t think the larger Viet Kieu community cares or even knows about Vpop at this point in time. Then again, I’m not very in tune with the Viet Kieu community. I don’t live in a large Vietnamese-populated area (e.g. Cali, Houston, etc.), and I have limited interactions with other Viet Kieu’s at this point in my life. However, if the non-existent online Viet Kieu community is any indication, then I would say that it’s not looking good.
I have a bunch of younger cousins, nephews, and nieces who aren’t that interested in Vietnamese culture. Does that bother me? Yes. Do I blame them? No. Instead, I think it’s more of a problem with the older generations. Why should the younger Viet Kieu generations care if no one gives them a reason to care? Take Paris By Night for example. It is no secret that it’s going the way of the dinosaur once the 1st generation Viet Kieu’s pass away. Why is that? It’s because they haven’t tried understanding the younger Viet Kieu audience. If everything is always about the war and how life use to be like in Vietnam, how does a person born in the US relate to that stuff? They can’t. Instead, PBN tried shoving garbage like Johnny Tri Nguyen as a teenage pop idol down the throats of Viet Kieu teens. Dude isn’t even a real singer. Screw that!
Now that I am older, I feel a personal responsibility to do better than the previous generation of promoting Vietnamese culture. Instead of sitting around and doing nothing, I decided to do something about it. I think Vpop can have a very positive influence on the Viet Kieu community. I believe you can get more people (especially younger Viet Kieu’s) excited about and interested in Vietnamese culture through Vpop. Look at how popular anime and Kpop has made Japanese and South Korean culture.
Yes, Vpop is currently overshadowed by American and Korean pop music. But you have to start somewhere. Kpop wasn’t always this popular. Honestly, running this site has been a huge burden, but I still do it anyways. If I don’t do it, who else will? It is all about showing others that Vietnamese culture is pretty cool. When all I see is stuff related to anime and Kpop (and nothing Vietnam related) being posted on social media from my Vietnamese friends and family, does it bother me? Hell yes! Never do I ever see anything highlight how “cool” Vietnamese people are. The only popular Vietnamese videos online that I see are videos making fun of the Vietnamese language and FOB culture. That’s messed up, yo. I can’t be the only one here who sees this stuff and think that it’s a problem. Making fun of yourself is all fine and dandy, but there needs to be some balance. If being Vietnamese is constantly uncool, then young Viet Kieu kids will naturally try to distance themselves from Vietnamese culture. Maybe Vietnamese kids would actually have more pride in their own culture if they weren’t constantly told not to be Vietnamese.| last edited by VpopFan Reputation: 527 | Posts: 392
Việt Kiều and Vpop
We can’t really expect much less than this quite in-depth analysis from this blog’s administrator.
I’m not very in tune with the Viet Kieu community either, but I do have cousins with a higher exposure to it. My cousin in California still speaks Vietnamese at home… which cannot be said about the ones in Vancouver. Out of the 25-ish cousins I have seen a decline in Vietnamese in all of them. Some can barely even understand it (me for instance). Furthermore, I am the only one out of all my cousins who care about Vietnamese history Vietnam war and back (I traded Vietnamese linguistics for Vietnamese history). In addition, not one other cousin listens to Vpop (Nor did they care when I tried to introduce them into it let’s be honest here ) 1/25 is quite a low fraction.
Your statement about the previous generation is quite accurate. Frankly, the cousin who does speak Vietnamese does so because of her parents. My other aunts and uncles do not reflect this discipline in their household; their children lost their Vietnamese as a result. Paris By Night used to be quite strong, but as the older generation fades away, PBN started to display some of the cringiest “pop” stylized music I have ever seen (I still have nightmares from viewing those).
I would love to connect other people to Vpop, but I’m too disconnected from the Viet Kieu community. We need to discuss how to change this in what I can see as the way forward at this point.
Việt Kiều and Vpop
@Danny-Tranter Yeah, I’m right there with you. When I tell people that I blog about Vpop, they look at me like I’m crazy. Sure, they will feign interest just to be polite, but I know the truth. I can see it in their eyes. They don’t give a f@ck! And I’m not just talking about strangers here either. My own family members don’t seem to understand. It’s like I’m trying to tell people about Kpop all over again. 10 years ago when I was saying Kpop was popping off, everybody looked at me like I was crazy. Now everybody is trying to get a piece of that Korean pie.
That just shows you that sentiments can change. However, Vpop is a hard sell. I often ask myself – if I can’t sell Vpop to my own family members, then how am I going to sell it to complete strangers who may have no connection or understanding of Vietnamese culture? Thus, I always try to write about Vpop in a way that is both entertaining and informative in order to give people a reason to care because I know no one cares about Vpop (within the Viet Kieu community for the most part).
Online communities have always been useful in bringing together disjointed communities. The Viet Kieu community is very spread out in the real world. Therefore, a strong online Viet Kieu community might be very beneficial to have. But I’m skeptical that it can really exist in a meaningful way without things turning into a political bloodbath. But maybe, just maybe…the Viet Kieu community can rally around something they can be proud of that isn’t political in nature…like Vpop perhaps?
Việt Kiều and Vpop
It seems your own family members are quite tame. Hahaha . When I tell my family members, they look at me with horror. They’re like: "You listen to this music huh?.. (looking at me like I’m a demon of sorts).
The only people I’ve seen on this forum (all 4 of us so far) that are fans of Vpop are ones that willingly go into it, withstanding the cringiest songs to get to the good ones. Most of my family do not have that willing decision to go in themselves, especially when they’re being shown it. People who are shown things rather than attempting to go into a community themselves are unlikely to join and seek out songs proactively.
I agree that Vpop is the strongest tool to bring the Viet Kieu community back together (however weak it is right now). However, the political bloodbath that you mentioned, I think, stems from the very nature of the Viet Kieu community: Vietnamese which belonged to the Republic of Vietnam. To bring this group back together may pose a risk to Vietnam today (the communist one). However, as this sentiment fades over time, hopefully this will not be the case.