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量贩式KTV in Wuhan, Hubei, China
Man Chhen KTV (ខារ៉ាអូខេ ម៉ានឈិន) in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Etymology 1Edit

Late 1980s Taiwanese Pseudo-English initialism from Japanese カラオケ (karaoke) + TV. Modelled after the earlier MTV "movie TV", which in turn repurposed the initialism from the earlier meaning "music TV", copied from the American cable TV network of that name. This term is chiefly used in China, Taiwan and Cambodia and by people of Chinese/Taiwanese descent.


KTV (countable and uncountable, plural KTVs)

  1. (chiefly Asia, common in China, uncountable) Karaoke television, a form of interactive musical entertainment.
    • 2004, Avron Boretz, "Carousing and Masculinity: The Cultural Production of Gender in Taiwan", in Catherine Farris, Anru Lee, Murray Rubinstein, Women in the New Taiwan: Gender Roles and Gender Consciousness in a Changing Society, East Gate, page 179:
      Most KTV clubs in Taiwan have since followed a single architectural formula: []
    • 2006, Tsen Wang, "DEMO Exegesis: Virtual Songs", in Kevin K. W. Wong et al., Proceedings of Third Australasian Conference of Interactice Entertainment, Murdoch University, page 34:
      They are enshrined and worshiped on the table as ‘holy scripture’ for KTV devotees.
    • 2010, Marc L. Moskowitz, Cries of Joy, Songs of Sorrow: Chinese Pop Music and Its Cultural Connotations, University of Hawaiʻi Press, page 10:
      As opposed to karaoke’s open venues, such as bars, KTV is enclosed in a private room and features microphones and a large television screen which includes the lyrics and features the music videos or, in the case of most Western songs, a low-budget video filmed especially for KTV.
  2. (chiefly Asia, common in China, countable) Karaoke box, a karaoke entertainment establishment.
    • 2009, James Udden, No Man an Island: The Cinema of Hou Hsiao-hsien, Hong Kong University Press, page 139:
      The longest take of the film, where the underwold and political figures decide the case of Flatty and Kao in the shadowy interstices of a KTV, []
    • 2012, Peter Martel, Gator Tango and the Higgs Boson, Strategic Book Publishing and Rights, page 67:
      “Anyway, in order to take my mind off of the problem, my wife suggested we go to a KTV,” Su said.
    • 2014, Brian Hu, Love in the Club: Karaoke Realism in Chinese and Hong Kong Cinema, in David Laderman, Laurel Westrup, Sampling Media, Oxford University Press, page 135:
      The KTV is an apt place to begin an investigation into such phenomena, []

Related termsEdit

Derived termsEdit


Etymology 2Edit

From Kondatam TV.

Proper nounEdit


  1. Kondatam Television (a popular Tamil TV channel)


  1. Karaoke Around the World: Global Technology, Local Singing edited by Shuhei Hosokawa. 1998. Page 175
  2. Consumption in Asia: Lifestyle and Identities edited by Beng-Huat Chua. 2000. Page 174