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Psy backtracks on 'Assarabia' song to avoid offending Arabs

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Gangnam Style stock
Gangnam Style stock

Psy announced the first details of a possible "Gangnam Style" follow-up earlier this week, but the reveal has been deflated somewhat — the K-pop star will now have to change the song's name. In a post to Korean social network Me2day, Psy said that "Assarabia" would feature an altered title and lyrics upon its eventual release, and that there is another contender track that could be the new single instead. It had reportedly come to the attention of record label YG Entertainment that "Assarabia" could insult the Arab population.

Voice of America correspondent Steve Herman raised similar concerns on Twitter, and later reposted a direct message from Psy himself claiming that the song wouldn't be a single. Psy also said that the song's title was a Korean slang term intended to be spelled "Assaravia" in English, which would be an unorthodox transliteration. Whatever happens with Psy's next single, it seems the star is keen for it to reach as wide an audience as possible — though he'll have some way to go before matching the billion-plus "Gangnam Style" views on YouTube.