Why Isn’t K-Pop Group BTS Included on the 2018 TIME 100 List?
When BTS won the TIME 100 Reader Poll, an achievement the magazine announced earlier this week, the South Korean music group seemed like a shoe-in for the publication's prestigious TIME 100 List.
On Thursday (April 19), however, when TIME released its annual feature, fans quickly noticed that BTS—who garnered a whopping 15% of the Reader Poll votes, impressively beating out the likes of Barack Obama, Beyonce, Bruno Mars and Shawn Mendes—did not make the cut, even though they "easily dominated" the poll.
Following a major global breakout year for the popular seven-member act—who broke multiple records and made history in 2017 and 2018 with various award show wins and achievements—it seemed natural for BTS to be included on the list of top influencers, which TIME editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal called a "a reflection of [the] moment."
Disappointed by the band's shocking exclusion, many accused the magazine of "click-baiting" the BTS fan community. Others lamented that TIME had no intention to include BTS in the first place, and had only included the transcendent K-pop act in its TIME 100 sister poll in order to drive traffic to its web site and build publicity for the list.
However, it seems that it was only a misconception that the winner of the TIME 100 Reader Poll was automatically guaranteed a spot on the TIME 100 List.
"While TIME editors are responsible for selecting the TIME 100, the online reader poll opens up voting to the general public," TIME wrote in an article announcing BTS' Reader Poll win, emphasizing that its team of editors ultimately have final say over who makes the list.
Similarly, the publication did make clear that the magazine's staff is responsible for compiling the final TIME 100 List when they launched the Reader Poll back in March, writing, "TIME editors select the TIME 100."
PopCrush has reached out to TIME for comment on BTS' exclusion from the 2018 TIME 100 List.
BTS' new studio album, Love Yourself: Tear, is out May 18.