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Intro to Comeback

This is a quick guide providing basic information regarding a comeback. For complete, detailed information, please visit the associated section on our website to learn more.

1 Baby STAY Guide Title Page

Guide for

Baby STAYs


Intro to Stray Kids’ Comeback

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This guide serves as an introduction to comeback basics, including the definition of some terms, FAQs, and more, for Baby STAYs and STAYs who may feel overwhelmed or confused about where to start.

Remember that as STAYs, we all enjoy Stray Kids’ content, especially their music. It is not mandatory to follow everything listed in this guide. Enjoy the content, do what you’re comfortable with, and go at your own pace in learning and supporting Stray Kids during their comeback. Any help, no matter how small, will contribute to Stray Kids’ continued success.

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What does the term 'comeback' mean?

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The term "comeback" in the context of the entertainment industry, particularly in music, refers to when an artist or group releases new material after a period of time. It could involve releasing new songs, albums, music videos, or staging performances to reintroduce themselves to their audience and potentially attract new fans. In the case of K-pop groups like Stray Kids, comebacks are often highly anticipated events among their fans and are accompanied by various promotional activities.

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When is Comeback?

Until an announcement is made, fan bases can only predict when an announcement will come based on experience, Stray Kids' current known schedule, and various other information available. Usually fanbases are accurate in their estimations within a matter of weeks sometimes days.

What’s Most Important for The Comeback?

Frankly, everything is crucial and affects the comeback. What we need to focus on depends on specific circumstances such as goals, location, criteria, time/period, and progress. If we're lacking on certain charts or apps, then that's where we should shift our focus. However, under no circumstances should that mean ignoring everything else.

Fan bases will release updates on what is needed at a certain time. For example, up to four weeks before the comeback, fan bases emphasize preparations such as collection on voting apps, donations for digitals, and pre-orders. But once the comeback happens, our focus will shift to streaming, actual voting for music shows, etc. The best option for everyone is to follow fan bases to know what to do, what to focus on, and when.

Important Terms:

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• Physical / Physical Album Sales: The sale of physical albums through music retailers.

• Digital Album Sales: Refers to album sales in digital media platforms like iTunes, Qobuz, Amazon, and 7digital.

For Billboard charts: 1 physical album = 1 digital album = 10 digital tracks

• Album Equivalent Unit / Album Equivalent: A measurement unit in the music industry that defines the consumption of music equivalent to the purchase of one album copy. This includes streaming and song downloads, in addition to traditional album sales.

• Digitals / Digital Points: In the context of K-pop, "digitals" specifically refer to the charting that songs receive on Korean music charts. Platforms like Bugs, Melon, Genie, and Flo are sources of digital points. Digitals are crucial criteria in Korean music shows.




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A record chart, in the music industry, also called a music chart, is a ranking of recorded music according to certain criteria during a given period. Chart rankings have a direct correlation with the commercial success of an artist's work. Music charts indicate the direction of the music industry at a given time. Nowadays, music charts are based on physical sales, digital downloads, radio airplay, etc.

It's also important to note that chart rankings do
play an important role in end of year award nominations.

During every comeback, fan bases will set GOALS for charts, including Circle (previously Gaon), Hanteo, K-Music platforms, Billboard, Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, YouTube, etc.

For physical charts, there are three main charts that album sales count towards: Billboard, Circle Chart, and Hanteo. For Japan, the main chart is Oricon.

Billboard is a record chart primarily in the United States and Japan, ranking the most popular music weekly based on streams, sales, radio plays, or a combination of all three. Billboard also features global and country-specific charts.

Circle Chart (formerly Gaon) serves as South Korea's national chart and is akin to Oricon in Japan and Billboard in the United States. Circle calculates the shipment of albums sold by distributors and record labels to retailers, including stock orders and reorders.

Circle Chart's various charts are more influential than Hanteo in year-end awards, such as Daesangs, as they demonstrate continued popularity and interest; and only one music show uses Hanteo for its scoring criteria while all others use Circle Chart. When purchasing we strongly suggest STAYs make sure their purchases are from Circle Chart verified retailers whenever possible (does not always apply to USA STAYs as their purchases should be Billboard focused).

Hanteo is a South Korean music chart system that tallies all K-pop album sales, providing an overview of album sales in real-time. Hanteo calculates sales for each confirmed purchase and does not rely on estimates. Both Hanteo and Circle charts measure albums sold by distributors in South Korea to retailers worldwide.

STAYs have the ability to maximize sales across all charts by purchasing from stores whose sales count on all major charts. When ordering an album, it's essential to check the charts it is counted on.

It's important to note that just because a retailer is approved and verified by one chart does not mean it is automatically approved or verified by another. We strongly suggest checking the retailers against the most updated list for each chart to be sure.

Many retailers may claim that your purchase counts towards a chart. While this may be true, unless the retailer is listed on the charts' list of retailers, most times, the retailer is using a wording loophole to boost their own sales. In reality, what they are telling you is that when THEY purchased the album, it counted. When they resell it to you, it does not count. This is why STAYs should be aware of what a retailer says and check for themselves. This is especially important for USA STAYs who purchase from AMAZON OR WALMART!

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Music shows are weekly programs in South Korea where various artists perform to promote their music. Each week, one song is selected as the winner based on specific criteria set by each show.

South Korea’s major broadcasting companies each host their own music show, which are broadcast on different channels.

• MBC M - Show Champion
• MNET - M Countdown
• KBS - Music Bank
• MBC - Show! Music Core (also known as MuCore)
• SBS - Inkigayo.

JYPE artists and groups do not appear or compete on The Show.

Note: If Stray Kids' Comeback is on a Friday; we will only have a 3-day tracking period (data collection) for the first week of the comeback, so it's crucial to focus heavily on music shows, especially digital performance because that's when our sales are the highest.

Important Terms or Criteria related

to Music Shows:

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• Pre-Voting: Voting conducted before the show airs, typically occurring several days prior to the live broadcast.

• Live Voting (For nominees only): Voting that takes place during the live broadcast of the music show, specifically for top 2 or 3 nominees.

• Broadcast: The number of times a song or content has been played on a network’s TV or radio shows.

• SNS: Engagement on social media or online platforms. Most shows utilize YouTube views for SNS metrics.

• Viewer’s Committee (For Korea only): Viewers registered under the network’s viewer panel survey.

• Physicals: The sale of physical albums by music retailers. Physical points are derived from Hanteo or Circle (formerly Gaon).

• Digitals / Digital Points: The charting that songs receive on Korean music charts. Bugs, Melon, Genie, and Flo are the main platforms where digital points are calculated. Digitals are a crucial criterion in Korean music shows.

Digitals have the biggest percentage contribution in music shows, accounting for an average of 50%. Historically, digitals have not been Stay’s strength. There have been instances where Stray Kids could have won if it weren't for low digitals. Moreover, digitals can also significantly impact year-end awards and nominations, which was evident during the 2023 end of year awards, we lost many awards due to lack of digital scoring even though in some instances our sales were the highest for the tracking period.

Important terms related to Digitals:

• Passes: A paid subscription that allows users to stream or download music.

• Unique Listener (UL): Each listener that is actively listening to the song. More ULs can help songs chart higher. It's important to note that 1 account equals 1 UL.

• Streaming Count: The total number of times a song has been played or streamed.

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• Song downloads weigh a lot more than streams.

• Unique listeners also weight a lot more than streaming counts so we need as many Stays as possible to stream.

• Downloads also weigh more than streaming even when factoring in unique listeners on K-streaming platforms. So donating to Download teams even $1 can make a huge difference.

There are 4 main streaming Korean platforms that are used for digitals on music shows.


There are two main ways a Stay can contribute to digitals:

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Can't Stream:

That's ok, we are aware that some STAYs are limited in resources and may not be able to participate in K Streaming for various reasons. STAYs can always help with digitals by donating.

K-Streaming Platforms require passes to stream, and these passes cost money. If you have an extra budget, you have the option to donate to "TRUSTED" DIGITAL PROJECTS set up by fan bases. Even $1 can make a difference. The donations will be used by streaming teams. Fan bases with open donations provide reports and proofs of previous accomplished projects when fund raising begins but STAYs are free to inquire about any information needed to feel comfortable donating by simply contacting the base or team you are planning to donate to.

No Budget:

That's ok, this is why bases and teams collect donations; for those that have the ability to stream but don't have the means too.

If that describes you GREAT, apply and join a STREAMING TEAM where you can be provided with PASSES for free. Many have dedicated team leaders that will walk you through the set up process and guide you through a tutorial so that you are comfortable using the platform.

Have a Budget:

You can buy passes and stream yourself. There are also teams that can guide you through the process, if you are new to K Streaming.

Teams are organized groups of Stays, typically led by fan bases. They focus on platforms, guide and teach members, and maximize resources, time, and funds.

Our team alongside all OT8 global fanbases provide lists of teams throughout comeback prep that are collecting and recruiting so be on the lookout.

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Frequently Asked Questions:

Q. Can international Stays stream on K-streaming platforms too?
A. Yes, International Stays, not just K-Stays, can stream on K-streaming platforms.

Q. Are passes expensive?
A. There is a digital service account (@skzwdzcart on twitter) that offers special discounts for Stays. The price ranges from $2 to $33 depending on the platform and other factors such as the device you plan on streaming on.

Q. What K-streaming platform should we focus on?
A. That is your choice, but fan bases highly recommend Genie and Flo.

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One of the best things about Stray Kids is their self-produced music, and one of the best ways to support them is by streaming and getting their music on the charts. However, there can be certain restrictions and implications needed to properly get a song/album to chart. For streams to count, you have to avoid bot-like behaviors and follow certain guidelines.

For example, Spotify has unfiltered streams, which are the ones shown on the Spotify web player, and filtered streams, which are the ones used on the charts. Filtering streams involves removing streams that were played on loop, muted, or forwarded/skipped.

Similarly, on YouTube, views that are spammy or bot-like would be deleted, and only valid views get added to the count. It's important to adhere to these guidelines to ensure that the streams contribute effectively to the charts and support Stray Kids' music.

Main streaming platforms that are included in our goals are:

Apple Music

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Basic Streaming Rules:

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Of course we strongly suggest checking the specific platform guides but here are some overall guidelines to keep in mind.

• Streams from paid accounts weigh more, so if you can, subscribe to free trials of premium accounts or purchase premium subscriptions.

for example: For Billboard, Paid subscriptions have more weight (1,250 streams = 1 album unit) than ad-supported subscriptions(3,750 streams = 1 album unit). Trials equate to paid.

• Act like a human, not a bot; interact with the streaming platform as you normally would.
• Do not spam comments.
• Avoid excessively repeating tracks, no looping.
• Never use a VPN
• Do not listen on mute, plus in headphones if needed.
• Rotate accounts, playlists, and streaming methods.

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As discussed in the Music Show section, criteria in music shows includes voting.

On most voting apps, you have to collect hearts or voting units that are used to vote with and it needs to be collected overtime.Some do have options to purchase these voting units but as long as all STAYs collect and do their best to meet the goals per account bases suggest then together we can ensure we dominate voting during a comeback. You can collect these voting units by watching ads, doing tasks, answering quizzes, etc.

Voting period is limited from a few days for prevotings to literally an hour or less for live votings.

There are FIVE voting platforms that are used in music shows.

Below are the shows and their associated voting app or website:

Voting platforms that require collection 90 days before a comeback with a minimum of 30 days before a comeback being vital to having enough to vote with.

• Show Champion - IDOLCHAMP
• Music Bank - MUBEAT
• Show! Music Core- MUBEAT
• Inkigayo - SUPERSTARX

Voting platforms that have no collection requirement instead STAYs should create multiple accounts on the platform instead to use for voting.

• M Countdown - MNET PLUS
• Inkigayo - IDOL+ 

Key Takeaways:

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• Check official comeback goals to understand what we aim to achieve.
• Digitals are crucial for Music Show wins.
• Join streaming or voting teams if you have time and little to no budget.
• Donations can significantly improve digitals.
• Streams from paid accounts carry more weight. Free trials of premium accounts are considered paid accounts.
• Follow fan bases to stay updated and informed about what needs to be done.
• Share important information to reach more STAYs on all platforms.
• Be careful spreading unconfirmed or unverified information.
• If you have questions, feel free to ask fan bases.

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What you can do to help in the comeback:

• Purchase the album from chart verified retailers.

• Stream and download on streaming platforms.

• Collect hearts, chamsims, accounts, heartbeats, and vote for Stray Kids on music show votings.

• Donate to digital projects.

• Hype the comeback and spread accurate verified information on as many platforms as you can.

• It's important to maintain focus on supporting Stray Kids and their comeback without engaging in fan wars or spending time and energy on negativity. 

Engaging with antis or individuals spreading hate can be unproductive and can distract from the positive aspects of supporting Stray Kids. 

Instead, fans can channel their energy into promoting Stray Kids' music, participating in positive projects within Stayville, and enjoying the comeback experience together as a fandom. 

Ultimately, we have never seen an anti stop spreading hate and suddenly have an epiphany that they are behaving in a manner that is widely regarded as disrespectful or toxic by any societies standards because a STAY proved them wrong or "helped them see the light" on a social media platform, they won't care about the consequences of their behavior but as STAYs we should because sometimes those consequences are felt by the Kids themselves. 

Instead let's utilize our report and block options, spread positivity, support each other and the Kids in a constructive manner, and together we can impact Stray Kids' and their comeback in a way that is more meaningful and lasting. The more attention you give antis the more they will hate, they feed off of it, so STOP FEEDING THE TROLLS PLEASE!

• AND MOST IMPORTANT; Remember to enjoy the comeback. Comeback seasons are filled with new music, content, and surprises. Let’s work together to achieve a successful comeback and garner more achievements for Stray Kids.

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