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I decided to make my solo blog, Get Trolled, about Asian Americans in the world of League of Legends  and in the context of other popular, online games, as the MOBA community is one I love and know well. Gamer or not, you might have been aware of recent happenings in the past few weeks – like eSports becoming federally recognized as real, professional athletics or of all the hate given to an all-female League of Legends team that was one contributor to its eventual disbanding. As an Asian dominated, Internet phenomenon – with its own troublesome misrepresentations – it’s important to consider the social implications and influences of the eSports community upon our new generation of gamers. With 32 million active League of Legends players, 60% of whom are in college, online gaming is definitely a relevant topic of youth culture!

So enjoy! Hopefully if you don’t already, it might entice you to give these games a try. And if you do play – League or SMITE, in particular – hit me up with your IGN c:

Do you like… HELLO KITTY?

Video

For this week, I decided to write about a more recent video from one of my favorite Youtuber’s, mychonny’s (John Luc) “Things to Know About Asian Girls”. He is actually from Australia, but I found that this video had themes that were also incredibly relevant to what we’ve been discussing of Asian American culture, while also being presented in a way similar to other Asian American Youtube artists, like pyrobooby. As Henry Jenkins writes in his Nine Propositions Towards a Cultural Theory of Youtube: “YouTube has emerged as the meeting point between a range of different grassroots communities”. And although chonny may be from Australia, the subject of his skit reveals that the same Asian stereotypes surpass just our own cultural boundaries and are further perpetuated by globally consumed sources of media, like Youtube. As different people have come to embrace these forms of online media, they gain perspective and are influenced by each other’s cultures and inevitably emerge with common themes – in this case, stereotypes towards acculturated, Asian women.

Released only a month ago, his video depicts a spectrum of the “types” of Asian females. At one extreme, there’s the “Import”, who would be relatable to your typical assimilated Asian, without any of the characteristics associated with traditional behavior. “They dress up, make up, import model look!” similar to white women. They essentially exist as white-washed and Americanized, they are consumers of superfluous, upper-class, material goods, and basically fit the model of a young, carefree, party girl. At the other end of the spectrum, there are the “F.O.B’s”, who speak with a heavy accent, dress in traditional clothing, act manipulatively, and are simply after providers to pamper – as chonny puts it, the “dumb, rich, white man” who can give them the monaaay. Then in some happy medium, there’s the “Type A” – the average girl, who’s ideally a perfect balance between Asian and white culture – they’re sweet, conservative, and studious. According to chonny, an Average A would proclaim, “Ewww, I want A’s not the D!” when asked what kind of boy she’d want to date.

As a backdrop to his focus on females, Luc depicts how males in general react towards Asian women. While it may be rather vulgar, it reinforces how all Asian women, despite their “type” are perceived as hypersexualized beings. His white impersonation simply boasts of having a big penis, his nerdier, Asian male impersonation is obviously less masculine and has nothing working for him, besides his love for anime and his math joke: “I’m single + you’re Asian, that’s a pretty good equation!”

Meow

Hello there, ASAM118! My name is Alexis Ramos. This fall, I will begin my trek as an upperclassman, specifically as a 3rd year Environmental Studies major and Ecology minor. I was previously Biochemistry — aiming for medical school — when I realized that my passion was for plants, not so much the human body. As 1st generation Filipina, I always like to indulge in the occasional Asian American course, especially as nowadays, while living so far from home and going to a school that is (for once) not predominantly Asian, I feel as if I’ve disassociated myself from my own culture. As a young girl, I was (and still am) obsessed with Pokemon and various manga and anime. However, nowadays, my favorite examples of Asian American pop culture are the vivid displays of trending fashion, for example, with icons like Kyarypamyupamyu, CL, Goto Maki, and Jia. Most of these women are music moguls, as well as fashion icons, which simply shows how one aspect of popular culture can influence and resound in another. 

To me, popular culture is not only defined by one’s society, but also defines it and it’s people, even if some of the individuals don’t exactly wish to be part of such popular norms. I always though it was funny that it was the self-proclaimed “hipsters”, ironically enough, who liked to identify themselves with counter-culture. Popular culture changes year by year, generation by generation, but I find that I would most associate the term with young adults. As individuals of a society, we choose what we consider favorable and what is unfavorable — influential companies and corporations may push an idea forward (whether it’s in terms of music, clothing, or even food) but it’s the people who choose to accept it and “hype” into the definition of popular. It is through such a process by which we can identify and define a certain group of people, but even though Pop Culture is constantly changing and evolving, long-term negative aspects — such as stereotypes and false representation — inevitably arise.