Guide: Glossary for VTuber Fans

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Every fandom has its own vocabulary. We created this little glossary of terms commonly used in the VTubing community, including acronyms, and hopefully, this will answer some questions that some of the newer fans may have. (Several relevant Japanese vocabularies have also been added to this list of terminology, as the VTubing trend originated in Japan in the mid-2010s.)

VTuber

VTubers, or virtual YouTubers, are online entertainers who use a virtual avatar generated using computer graphics. Although the term refers to YouTube, virtual YouTubers also appear on other video platforms such as Twitch.

Virsona

Virsona is a trademark term for a 4V Live virtual content creator

BGM

Background Music. (Acronym)

Cosplay

Cosplay, a blended word of “costume play,” is an activity and performance art in which participants called "cosplayers" wear costumes and fashion accessories to represent a specific character.

Here’s Angelina Kumalo.

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Here’s a cosplay of Angelina Kumalo. (Credits: @min_mmu)

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Kawaii​

Cute. Derived from Japanese characters for "can love."

Manga

Comics or graphic novels that originate from Japan are called manga. Manga-influenced comics, among their originals, also exist in other parts of the world, including in Chinese ("manhua"), Korean ("manhwa"), and English ("OEL manga").

In Japanese, "manga" refers to all kinds of cartooning, comics, and animation. Among English speakers, "manga" has the stricter meaning of "Japanese comics."

Debut

A first appearance, generally during a stream, as of a VTuber.

Generation

A group that debuted together. generally, under the same umbrella. Some organizations choose to use this term to differentiate between VTuber groups within a same organization. 4V Live does NOT use the term "Generation" to describe each group of VTubers.

Graduation

Nothing lasts forever. Graduation means retirement.

 

When a graduation is announced, there can also be farewell streams or events, which will be named as graduation streams or events. These special farewells tend to be relatively different from a VTuber’s usual streams.

Seiso

Refers to a character type defined by innocence, purity, and propriety. It is also used ironically to refer to a character who definitely does not have those qualities or tries and fails to act pure and wholesome. A Japanese term for "wholesome."

Shojo / Shoujo

Usually refers to manga and anime targeted at girls, as well as anime based on a manga story that ran in a magazine targeted at girls. Typically focuses on relationship and plot over action, but there are always exceptions. The actual Japanese term means "girl."

Shonen / Shounen

Usually refers to anime or manga targeted towards boys. Characterized by lots of action and adventure instead of relationships or romance. A Japanese term for "young man / boy."

Yabai

An adjective denoting that something is risque, bad, or dangerous.

Yatta

The past tense of the Japanese verb yaru ("to do"), an exclamation meaning "It's done!", "I did it!", "Ready!" or "All right!"