The hot topic swirling within the K-pop fandom recently has been the generational status of the sensational girl group, ITZY. While some firmly place the group within the 4th generation of K-pop idols, others argue that their February 2019 debut falls within the twilight of the 3rd generation.

ITZY's Generational Status: A Matter of Heated Debate On June 23, conversations about ITZY's generational standing ignited online debates. Netizens found themselves entangled in the question of whether ITZY belongs to the 4th generation or not.

A post that sparked this debate argued against the popular notion held by ITZY's fans, known as MIDZYs, insisting that the group cannot be considered as 4th-gen due to their debut timeline. The post explained that the year 2019, when ITZY debuted, was a period when 3rd gen heavyweights like TWICE, BLACKPINK, and Red Velvet were in fierce competition, delivering hits like "FANCY," "KILL THIS LOVE," and "ZIMZALABIM" respectively.

The argument advanced by the poster was that ITZY's debut with "DALLA DALLA" in 2019, during the prime of the 3rd generation, does not signify the onset of the 4th gen. They argued that the 4th generation truly began with groups like STAYC and aespa, with ITZY more likely fitting within the 3.5 gen bracket, given that they debuted around the same time as other 3.5 gen groups such as (G)I-DLE, IZ*ONE, and LOONA.

Counterarguments and Controversies The point that male and female idols have never simultaneously initiated a generation was also brought up, using the example of how EXO began the 3rd gen for male idols in 2010, whereas female groups were still within the 2nd generation with Apink until Girl's Day and AOA ushered in the 2.5 gen.

The post elicited various reactions, with some agreeing that it's not apt to categorize ITZY as 4th gen, while others posited that the line demarcating the 3rd and 4th generations was blurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Some felt this controversy is a tactic to disparage ITZY, who are due for a comeback in 2023.

However, some fans remain steadfast in their assertion that ITZY is part of the 4th generation, expressing that groups like ITZY, (G)I-DLE, LOONA, and IZ*ONE were heralded as the pioneers of the 4th gen at their debut.

As this spirited debate rages on, it further highlights the intricate and impassioned world of K-pop fandom and the group's significant impact on the genre.