Disclaimer: I consider myself to be MingEr, ZaintSee and Zunshine. All three fandoms I call my own. So while I will be revealing statistics and information from my survey, I might have a bias. And my bias is that we all exist peacefully together. However, I am going to be fair and balanced in writing what others have said, the good, the bad and the uncertain.
First let’s define each fandom and explain how they got their name.
Let’s start with the oldest fandom of the three. Saint Suppapong’s fandom is called MingEr. It comes from his Chinese name given to him by his grandfather. His name is Huang Ming Ming. This means the of Huang is Yellow and Ming Ming means bright and brilliant. So his name is the sun. Which is why you will see a sun emoji sometimes used by fans to represent him. And Er means the people of. So MingEr means the people of Saint.
Zee Pruk’s fandom is called ZunShine. Here is the translation from this. Also Zee’s Chinese name picked by Saint is Li Hai Hai which means Sea, which Zee adores and it rhymes with his name. So Li Hai Hai is the sea and his fans are what shine down and make him warm.
Then we have ZaintSee which are fans of both Zee Pruk and Saint Suppapong.They are couple fans who support the couple works but unlike a lot of other fandoms, they also support individual works. They didn’t give us a name. But this is what they said about it.
So those are the three fandoms we will be discussing. To me it’s interesting because Saint and Zee have both claimed each other’s fandoms as their own. Here is a translation of their first official couple fan meet. This fan meeting is both heartbreaking and lovely to see. Saint opened up about how he was discouraged and was unsure of his path, but seeing the fans reassured him that he had support still. I’ll leave a link down below if you’d like to watch it.
This next two images I want everyone to read. One is from Saint and one is from Zee. But they are powerful words that all three fandoms should hear and remember.
I had 31 responses so thank you to everyone who participated. I invited solo MingEr and ZunShine as well as ZaintSee fans to participate.
Survey Questions & Responses
1. What fandom do you identify as?
- MingEr Only: 3
- ZunShine Only: 3
- ZaintSee Total: 25
- Just ZaintSee: 12
- MingEr, ZaintSee & ZunShine: 6
- ZunShine & ZaintSee Only: 5
- MingEr & ZaintSee Only: 2
As you can see the majority of the responses were ZaintSee. The percentages came out like this:
MingEr Only: 10%
MingEr Total (combined solo and couple fans): 35% of all responders
ZunShine Only: 10%
ZunShine Total (combined solo and couple fans): 45% of all responders
I didn’t get a large selection of solo fans but I did get a proportional number of each fandom for the survey to have validity.
2. What country do you live in?
Of those who have listed their countries, here are the responses:
North and South America: 4
3. How long have you been a member of this fandom?
The ZunShine only responses were less than 1 year.
The MingEr only responses were as follows: 1 = 2-3 years while 2 = 1-2 years.
The overall percentages are:
- 3 or more years
- 2-3 years
- 1-2 years
- Less than 1 year
So these responses tell us something. Of the people who responded to my survey, only 6% of these people were fans before WhyRU aired. So I assume these fans were Saint fans from Love By Chance era or Saint’s fans before that.
I don’t want to go into too many details here, but Saint was the target of online harassment and bullying behavior from his coworkers manager at the time suggesting that he sold himself to get the role of Pete in LBC. I will link a video to a balanced view of the situation. It’s very informative.
However there was resentment among Saint fans who didn’t like the fact that no one in the cast came to his defense against the rumors. Also he was excluded from many LBC events because they would schedule the events during time when he had other commitments. A popular theory says this action was due to his popularity among fans and jealousy from the management. The management may have been unhappy because other cast members were not getting enough time in the spotlight. We can only guess the reasoning of the action, but it was deliberately done, leading to Saint reacting alone to episodes without his cast mates.
This led to a schism in the fan community between those who supported Saint only, MingEr and those who continued to support Perth and Saint (Trigon) There are a few MingEr who are/were Trigon but I honestly don’t think they would answer my survey.
I wanted to give a bit of background for those who are new fans and may not understand the thoughts and actions of the MingEr who walked beside of Saint during this era. They might have a different view on couple work.
So we have new fans joining in on both ZunShine and ZaintSee sides. Remember there are always different sides to every story so I advise all of you to do your research on your idols. Also when doing your research ask yourself 3 things about the source you are using.
1. Is the source credible? Is it a news agency, Wikipedia article, or random thoughts of people on the Internet?
2. Is it valid? Do they have research, documentation to back up their theory or other sources that they cite?
3. Is it biased? Is there a slant to the story? Is there a clear bias from one side or the other, or is it a balanced article, video, site, etc? Always try to look at where the information is coming from.
Now that we’ve established who’s responded, lets get to the other questions and see where fandoms are similar and fandoms diverge.
4. Do you consider yourself a solo fan (only supporting an individual person, no couple)
The no’s have it at 81% and the yes is 19%. Interesting demographic as some ZaintSee fans must have answered as solo fans.
5 & 6. If you are a solo fan does it change according to the gender in couple work? If so what gender pairing would change your view to include couple support?
Out of the people who answered yes to number four, 3% didn’t answer the question, but the answers were 4% of Solo fans would support couple work if it was Boy/Girl. 12% said they would support couple work if it was Boy/Boy.
This is interesting to me. So the fact that Zee and Saint aren’t getting couple support doesn’t seem to be based on the gender of Saint’s or Zee’s partner. Only a small percentage of fans wish them to have work with the opposite gender.
I am surprised, given this information, that the couple Saint and Zee seemed to have less support now, because there have been fans who were supporters of both who have However, that is a perception among fans, and may not be true in terms of numbers. Some couple fans have divided into either MingEr or ZunShine. However statistically solo fans will continue to support couple work in the future. That is reassuring to hear for both Saint and Zee. Their future depends on fans support.
7 & 8. How do you support the individual when they are promoting couple work and sponsored events? And if they are promoting their partner in a couple event or hashtag trending, what would you do?
The majority of responses include trending, buying merchandise, streaming and watching video’s on various platforms and commenting on social media sites. This is good to know. We all do the same for our idol and his partner when they are in couple works that are sponsored events or promotions.
Also everyone 100% of those asked said they would follow along with what their idol does, using the same tags, and retweeting what they tweeted. No matter which fandom you belong to, we all agree to follow along and help them. We are all united in this.
9. If you are a couples fan, do you support couples work only or support individuals works and couple works?
I feel this is something unique to the ZaintSee fandom. 100% of them said they would support individual works and couple works. I’ve seen other fandoms which only support the pair when they are promoting the pair. This couple fandom has always said that they would support the individual and the couples works. Later on you will see the different sides of solo fans perceptions of the couples fans. However, everyone tries to keep supporting both.
A prime example of this could be seen today. We had a Shopee Live event for Saint at 23:00 followed by a Shopee Live event for Zee at 0:15. We, the couples fans, played both trending hashtags and screen shots, participating in both where possible. This can be difficult when they have separate events on the same day. But as Thai fans have proven, they can hustle from one place to the next to see and support both of them.
Conclusion Part 1/2
The one thing I can say thus far is that all three fandoms seem to have the same goals, to support their idol. MingEr supports Saint. ZunShine supports Zee. And ZaintSee supports both Saint and Zee. This is all positive so far. Given these answers, it doesn’t make sense as to why the fandoms aren’t harmonious. So hopefully in the next part of the survey we can delve into peoples responses more thoroughly. This should give us a jumping point to start conversations that may help us all come together and exist as a lovely happy place for our idols, their coworker, friends and family.