Bangtan Sonyeondan, more popularly known as BTS is one of the most successful Korean groups in the world. The group's many achievements this year include being named by TIME as Entertainer of the Year for 2020, Guinness World Record for most-viewed YouTube video in 24 hours, becoming the first group with multiple No. 1 Hot 100 debuts on the Hot100 Billboard chart, and becoming the first Korean group to receive a Grammy Award nomination.
Their fan base, known as ARMY (Adorable Representative M.C. for Youth) is one of the most active fandoms online. BTS currently has 35.1M followers on Instagram, 26M followers on Twitter, and over 16M followers on Facebook with countless Facebook groups dedicated to the global sensations.
There are ARMYs are around the world including Qatar and we're featuring them in this week's Qommunity Voices! We reached out to Qatar ARMYs to find out the story behind the group! Read our short interview with the BTS fan group below.
QA: Qatar ARMYs or “آرمي قطر” was made by Maryam Fakhroo back in 2017 when BTS had won “Top Social Artist” in Billboards. It was very hard to start a fanbase when there weren't a lot of fans here in Qatar. However, with time and patience, we were able to grow larger and larger each year. The group was formed by 2 high school friends, Maryam and Anisa, who are the 2 admins of @qatararmys pages.
QA: Maryam Fakhroo is a young Qatari ARMY who started the fanbase back in 2017, she had a passion for supporting BTS and making projects and events for ARMYs here in Qatar. Currently, Maryam Fakhroo is a sophomore studying Information Systems at Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar. Back in 2017, where BTS wasn’t well known yet in Qatar, she started providing BTS albums, posters, and merchandise for the ARMYs here in Qatar.
QA: All BTS fans & ARMYs can become part of our fanbase as long as they respect the admins and fellow ARMYs here in Qatar.
QA: We tried various activities here in Qatar, we hosted an event for BTS ARMYs, we also supported sellers and small businesses here in Qatar. We also did ads to celebrate BTS members' birthday celebrations as well as our newly cup sleeve projects for ARMYs here in Qatar.
We can say that we are so proud to be the first to do a cup sleeve project in Qatar and we are happy to be bringing new things to Qatar ARMYs.
QA: Our biggest achievement is hosting the largest event for ARMYs in Qatar. We were so excited to collaborate with various BTS merchandise sellers to support their business as well as our own ARMYs shop. We feel so proud that 140+ female ARMYs attended this meet-up, we promise to work on larger events for Qatar ARMYs.
QA: I believe we are known for supporting small businesses and spreading the love around. We would love to continue supporting local coffee shops here in Qatar in the future with our cup sleeve projects, and we would love to also support small businesses.
I think it’s best to hear from sellers themselves, here’s Gabriella, one of the sellers that participated in our event:
“Ktown Qatar officially launched on May 28, 2019, with Gabriella (15) as the owner and founder of Ktown Qatar. We participated as one of the sellers in QatarArmys Fan Meet-up event and took this opportunity to not only share our love for Bangtan Boys but to also make the fans happy with their purchases. Our helpers Jessica (13), Dionella (11), and Geisha (10) also came to join Gabriella in participating in this event, and without their help, it wouldn't have gone well. The event helped us grow significantly and demand grew quickly. We really want to thank Maryam for hosting this big event and everyone who has made this happen. Surprisingly, we came in with 2 boxes and 2 bags but came out with 1 bag only. Obviously, organizing the event was not easy but Maryam's hard work really started our Summer Holiday with an amazing event that helped each one of the admins and helpers of Ktown Qatar to work harder and provide more merchandise! We are looking forward to participating in Maryam's future events”.
We are currently helping other fanbases in Qatar, we are proud to be an inspiration for other fan bases and how we could give them tips to become a successful fanbase in the future. We also wish that there will be more Arab admins to translate for Qatari Kpop fans.
QA: Maryam & Anisa would love to keep working hard for ARMYs here in Qatar. We have been selling handmade bundles so that ARMYs in Qatar can contribute to the projects we are working on. We are happy that Jin & V projects were fully funded by the bundle bags bought by ARMYs.
We are happy to announce that we will be the first to start a project in Seoul, South Korea for V's birthday project as a Bus Ad by our fanbase will be running for 1 month.
We will be keeping our future projects a secret, however, we might be posting spoilers here and there, so ARMY...stay tuned !!
QA: I hope that Qatar ARMYs will continue to support our fanbase and future projects. We also wish that all fanbases (whether ARMYs or not) will never get mistreated by anyone and that they will always receive the recognition they deserve.
We hope that one day BTS will see how hardworking Maryam, Anisa, and all Qatar ARMYs are, and hopefully visit Qatar for a Summer Package or a photoshoot, maybe even as ambassadors for Qatar Airways.
We also wish that there will be more young Qatari fans for K-pop here in Qatar, we are noticing that there is a lot, but they are hiding. We hope we can gather, not only BTS ARMYs but all K-pop fans in Qatar together one day.
Sending all love and support to all fan bases here in Qatar.
If you are a fan of other Kpop bands, here are some of the fanbases in Qatar (as referred by Qatar ARMYs)
Cover image credit: Qatar ARMYs (image taken before COVID-19)
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