MTV Video Music Awards rolls out Best Group category after backlash from K-pop fans

South Korean boyband BTS are among the nomineess for the new, fan-voted Best Group category of the MTV Video Music Awards.
South Korean boyband BTS are among the nomineess for the new, fan-voted Best Group category of the MTV Video Music Awards.PHOTO: BIG HIT ENTERTAINMENT

K-pop fans were initially upset after super boy band BTS were overlooked by the MTV Video Music Awards (VMA) organisers.

The seven-member group, which have spearheaded a K-pop invasion of the United States, bagged four VMA nominations in July but none in the major categories.

Fans also perceived that the unveiling of a new K-pop category was meant to "protect" Western artists from competition.

The organisers, reacting to the backlash, has now introduced a new, fan-voted Best Group category.

The nominees announced on Monday (Aug 19) are Australian pop rockers 5 Seconds Of Summer; Latin American boy band CNCO; two American boy groups - Backstreet Boys and Jonas Brothers; American-Canadian boy band Prettymuch; and American pop outfit Why Don't We; along with K-pop heavyweights BTS and Blackpink.

The new award is welcomed by K-pop followers, who have long been vexed by the unequal treatment of artists even if they storm the charts.

The Grammys early this year nominated BTS only for Best Album Package, with the organisers later trying to pacify critics by inviting BTS to present a prize at the ceremony.

 
 

But even as the VMA organisers have made a concession, some netizens are not happy over the 24-hour voting window, saying it sounds like an insincere, rush job.

The winners of the VMAs will be announced at a show in Newark, New Jersey, on Aug 26.

Powerhouse artists Ariana Grande and Taylor Swift lead the list of nominees, with 10 nods each.