Only in kpop is a fanbase a bad thing. When it's what feeds artists instead of the pathetic change they get from streaming services lile melon for instance. Look up the rates. It ain't pretty.
It has become so in vogue to slander a group for having a dedicated fanbase that is willing to spend money and energy on their faves. When the casual uninterested elusive streamer (aka gp) who listens passively to top 10 playlists is hailed as a superior music consumer.
The narrative is also being weaponized against artists with big fandoms . The reason is obviously jealousy cuz in the real world, brand loyalty is any artist's dream (including ur faves).
The stigma associated with fandom for some portion of kpop stans make them go through hoops to justify some so called gp darlings ( ggs and iu) consistent streams.
News flash, when ur faves get 200k unique listeners plus in each comeback EVERY SINGLE TIME , those listens are in huge part fandom driven.
Something could start as a viral gp song but if that becomes a pattern for all latter songs of said artists . it stops becoming gp.
So yeah contrary to the kpop bubble of delusions, fandom>>>>gp for ur faves .
A healthy dose of both is always ideal cuz of the potential of turning more people to fans.
Anyway, that was my little sunday rant.