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Everything you need to know about ‘Baidu Bars’ for idols

It’s common to see how there are famous idols in girl or boy groups who have dedicated fans that support them fully. In China, there are different social media sites where fans express their love and support to their idols. The Chinese fandom community is well known international fans because of the dedicated Chinese Baidu Bars that they set up for their favorite idols.

Chinese Baidu Bars for idols raise the bar as these fan clubs bring it to a higher level of fan support with their expensive birthday gifts, promotional LED screens, and mass pre-orders for albums. Want to find more about Baidu Bars? Here is everything you need to know about Baidu Bars for Idols. 


What are Baidu Bars? 

Baidu Bars (百度贴吧) are forums on the website Baidu Tieba, which are one of the largest and most popular social media websites in China. The word tiē bā (贴吧) translate to “let’s post” itself. The platform links users to bars or (吧) that are forums or fan clubs based on their interests. Baidu Tieba is actually backed by the most used search engine website Baidu. Baidu Tieba is similar to Reddit because there are discussion forums for every topic. It combines the aspects of social media, news, and bulletin message boards for the community to interact.

Meng Meiqi (孟美岐) Baidu Bar

What do fans do in an artist’s Baidu Bar? 

Inside the community forum, there are different ways fans do for their favorite idols. Fans have different types of roles in their accounts. Most fan accounts divide themselves into teams with specific responsibilities: (1) PR team, (2) Steaming team, and (3) Anti-anti team. The PR team is responsible for relying on kind messages to other bars of different idols and maintaining good relationships with them.

They also reach out to international fans through different social media networks like Twitter. The Streaming team helps other fans how to stream the songs of the idol groups. They give tutorials on using VPN, accessing websites, and setting up funds to buy free passes for fans on music streaming websites and applications.

The anti-anti team tries to end fan wars and announces antis or hate posts against the idols. In the way, fans can report the accounts and remove them in the community forum. 

Sections inside the Xiao Zhan (肖战) Bar

There are also sub-teams in big accounts who are usually the fansites. The sub-team is responsible for providing content to fans, which consist of (1) Graphic artist team, (2) Translating team, and (3) Writers in the community. The graphic artist team creates graphics, videos, design banners, and fan merchandises. The translating team adds subtitles and translates video content and social media posts uploaded by the idols and the entertainment company. They usually translate the content into Chinese, Korean, English, and Japanese. The writers create daily motivational posts, daily updates, and general announcements about releases and schedules of the idols. 

Photos courtesy of Xiao Zhan Bar, Yang Wibo Bar, and RenjunBar in Baidu Bar and Twitter

Big accounts are usually fansites who are known to be rich enough to afford to go to different locations and paid events. These fansites go to their idols’ schedules like fansign events and concerts. They also upload photos of their idols afterward for fans to enjoy. What makes Baidu Bars special is how they really take fan supports to another level. When it’s the birthday of their idol, they would put them on LED screens in different locations, spoil him/her with expensive gifts, and do charity events under the name of the idol.

Photos courtesy of @dollxiao on Twitter and Taeyong Bar in Weibo

Photos courtesy of Cheng Xiao Bar and Chenle Bar from @sailorchengxiao and @deeryumarks on Twitter

Baidu bars are also well-known for their group orders in order to raise pre-orders sales of their idol group’s albums. They also offer benefits to fans who order through them depending on how much you order to easily gain sales. For example, Renjun Bar gives eyeshadow palettes, makeup brushes, dolls, bags, and pajamas for people who order the album in huge bulk. With the good fan benefits, the mass pre-orders contribute to the success of their idol’s album sales that can benefit them to win in music shows. 

Photos courtesy of Renjun Bar posted by @d1_dkb and @Popcornbobo0323 on Twitter

What are nicknames and terms used by fans in Baidu Bars?

A unique aspect of Baidu Bars is how they create unique Chinese terms for entertainment companies and groups in Chinese. The Chinese terms usually come from the English acronym or Chinese characters that sound like the word or translation. 

Entertainment companies have quirky names with meanings of the Chinese words that don’t actually connect to the companies at all. For example, SM and JYP Entertainment are called 傻帽 (shǎ mào) and 酱油瓶 (jiàng yóu píng). The Chinese characters are based on the initials of the companies’ names but the translations mean fool and soy sauce bottle. YG Entertainment is called 歪鸡 (wāi jī) which means crooked chicken. But, the Chinese characters are based on the similar pronunciation of the initials. 

Photos courtesy of SM Entertainment, JYP Entertainment, and YG Entertainment

The same goes for idol groups as Chinese fans get creative with the groups’ nicknames. Wanna One is called 碗 (wǎn) from the beginning of its group name, but the translation means bowl. F(x) is called 函数 (hán shù) because of its mathematical term that means function. 

Photos courtesy of Swing Entertainment and SM Entertainment

They also give nicknames to idols as WinWin from NCT is called 昀昀 (yún yún) because the characters have similar pronunciations. Mark Lee from NCT is called 马颗粒 (mǎ kē lì) because of the wordplay from the characters 颗粒 (kē lì) that has a similar pronunciation to his full name. 颗粒 (kē lì) means grain which is why Mark’s nickname has another meaning to fans.

Photo courtesy of @NCTsmtown_127 on Twitter

In their community, fans have different nicknames for page administrators and overseas fans. Fansite admins are called 站姐 (zhàn jiě) which mean site sister while coordinators in the forums. Chinese fans call themselves 天朝女孩 (tiān cháo nǚ hái) which means heavenly kingdom girls. Heavenly kingdom is an internet slang that is a synonym for China. Korean fans are called nh 姐姐 (jiě jie) which means South Korean older sisters. Japanese fans are called 樱花妹妹 (yīng huā mèi mei) which translates to cherry blossom younger sisters. 

Photo courtesy of BTS on Facebook

Fans also use Chinese terms used for their fan activities. 搬砖 (bān zhuān) actually means buying a lot of albums, but the word’s literal translation is moving bricks. It is because the Chinese word brick (砖, zhuān) and album (专辑, zhuān jí) have a similar pronunciation. 刷 (shuā) means stream and the term refers to playing a song or whole album of the idol or idol group in Chinese digital streaming sites and applications

Photo courtesy of SM Entertainment

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