Prior to Saturday’s pro-Donald Trump rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma the human cheeto himself boasted that over one million of his supporters had signed up for tickets. Imagine his surprise, then, when the big day rolled around and half the seats in the arena were completely arseless.
It turns out, K-pop stans had launched a TikTok troll to register hundreds of thousands of fake ticket requests to the rally, leading to a massively overblown estimate of attendance numbers in the lead-up.
One of the organisers behind the prank, a YouTube host named Elijah Daniel, explained to the New York Times that the devious sabotage “spread mostly through Alt TikTok”.
“We kept it on the quiet side where people do pranks and a lot of activism,” he added. “K-pop Twitter and Alt TikTok have a good alliance where they spread information amongst each other very quickly. They all know the algorithms and how they can boost videos to get where they want.”
While US Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was one of countless amused politicians who cheered the K-pop fans on Twitter. In a tweet aimed at Trump’s campaign manager, she wrote: “You just got ROCKED by teens on TikTok who flooded the Trump campaign w/ fake ticket reservations & tricked you into believing a million people wanted your white supremacist open mic enough to pack an arena during COVID.”
When they’re not blasting BTS, the K-pop community has actually become pretty involved in social activism lately. Last month, stans banded together to crash an app used by the Police Department in Dallas, as well as reclaiming a bunch of racist hashtags on Twitter such as #WhiteLivesMatter.
kpop stans really ruined trumps rally… i LOVE this song pic.twitter.com/sZXYUO5EtM
— ♡ jungkook’s footstool⁷ (@lilynotlilly) June 21, 2020