People responded to the 2020 ARMY Census
Countries and territories represented
Languages were made available for the survey
Trended WW on Twitter and Weverse on launch day
"ARMY is just a bunch of teenagers."
A large number of ARMY is made up of young fans (50% of our data), and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it-- just like there is nothing wrong with very many older individuals sharing the same love and passion for BTS. Part of what makes BTS unique is their ability to resonate with people of all ages. There is nothing shameful about young people viewing BTS as positive role models in their lives, and it is ignorant to suggest that enjoying good music has an expiration date.
"ARMY is made up of a bunch of girls."
It is no secret that a majority of BTS ARMY are women (87% of our data). The stereotype that BTS fans are women implies that a) BTS fans must be relatively vapid and b) the women who love them must be fanatical people. With ARMY’s participation in UNICEF, Black Lives Matter and other massive international philanthropic efforts (see One In An ARMY's tracking of these efforts), media outlets globally have come to realize that ARMY are powerful, intelligent, and savvy. Therefore, by extension, it is WOMEN who are the driving force behind these undertakings, and they are the driving force of positive change and social good. This is not acknowledged enough. On top of their ability to mobilize in support of BTS and their music, they have used their influence to make a difference in the world. The ability to do this effectively and on a large scale is what makes ARMY different from other fandoms, and if the gender identity of the people doing this is “female,” that should be celebrated, not ridiculed. Female fans are often undermined and underestimated, but it is clear that they deserve respect and credit for leading the way.
CHALLENGES & LIMITATIONS
* TEAMWORK MAKES THE DREAMWORK *
When our team started working on this project in the spring of 2020, we had no idea the type of response we would get through the ARMY Census. To the over 400,000 ARMYs around the world who took the census survey: we are so grateful for your participation.
This project also would not have been possible without the help of 40+ wonderful translators who volunteered and dedicated their time and effort to ensure that as many people as possible can be included in the survey.
Thank you to Bangtan Scholars for their collaboration as promotional partners, and thank you to everyone around the world who helped spread the word.