Taylor Swift's Feuds: A Breakdown of Her Beef With Scooter Braun, Kanye West and Others
By Zach Seemayer
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Taylor Swift is once again setting the internet ablaze, but not with a new song but rather a continuing feud.
The "You Need To Calm Down" singer took to Tumblr on Sunday to post a lengthy message about Scooter Braun in which she accused him of "bullying" her for years. ET has reached out to Braun for comment. The post sparked heated debate between her fans, her friends, and other celebs who ventured into the fray to publicly pick sides.
This war of words is the latest in a long line of (mostly) music-industry feuds that Swift has found herself in the middle of during her long career, and she's once again not shying away from defending herself with every tool at her disposal. Sometimes the feuds have ended amicably, while other rivalries have just gotten more entrenched.
To see how things might play out, ET is looking back at Swift's most public, vocal feuds -- including her most recent -- and breaking down what happened, how things went down, and how things stand now.
Kanye West and Kim Kardashian
"Yo, Taylor, I'm really happy for you. I'mma let you finish, but Beyoncé had one of the best videos of all time!" With this comment from West at the 2009 MTV VMAs, after he stormed the stage and stole the mic following Swift's win for Best Female Video, one of the most famous celebrity music feuds in recent memory was sparked.
Two days later, West apologized for his comments, but in 2013, when asked if he still regretted doing what he did, West said no, and seemed to only partially remember it even happening.
Then 2015 came around, and after a few pleasant public appearances during different award shows, Swift praised West and said, "I completely respect him as a producer," during a profile for Vanity Fair.
Then, West dropped The Life of Pablo, with the song "Famous," in which he has a line where he takes credit for popularizing Swift's career and suggests they "might still have sex." Swift claimed she'd been told about the broad strokes of the song's message, but was never informed of the line "I made that b**th famous."
It became a he said/she said back-and-forth about whether or not West had actually gotten her blessing on the lyric -- which he claimed he did -- or whether or not it was a huge insult. Tensions began escalating once again, as West went on numerous public rants about her.
Kim Kardashian then joined the fray, claiming that the conversation in which Swift agreed to the lyrics was recorded. Later, through a series of snapchat videos, Kardashian posted snippets of the supposed phone call, which Swift claims didn't actually represent the true story.
Additionally Kardashian's shady use of a snake emoji to insult Swift became a central theme for the singer, who seemingly embraced the symbolism, which is why a snake plays a central role in the imagery for her "Look What You Made Me Do" music video, and her Reputation Tour.
After Twitter sleuths deduced that Swift may have been talking about Perry, and that it likely related to Perry supposedly poaching some of Swift's back-up dancers for her Prismatic Tour, and then Perry subtly seemed to confirm these speculations when she tweeted "Watch out for the Regina George in sheep's clothing..."
Watch out for the Regina George in sheep's clothing...
The majority of their feud was waged through vague shade throwing without either of them really making any direct attacks. Perry would occasionally weigh in on some of Swift's feuds with other celebs, and Swift would make passing references to Perry during her shows -- like when she mocked Perry's Super Bowl Halftime Show's "Left Shark" by including a shark mascot of her own during a live performance of "Bad Blood."
Perry addressed their feud head-on when she joined James Corden for an installment of "Carpool Karaoke" in May 2017, when she said Swift "started it and it's time for her to finish it." Swift seemingly added fuel the fire the following June when she announced that her entire song catalog would return to all streaming services the same night as Perry's Witness album dropped.
Finally, in May 2018, Swift shared a video of an olive branch and an apology note she wrote from Perry on her Instagram Stories, a sign that Perry wanted to put their issues behind them. A year later, Swift sent Perry a plate of chocolate chip cookies as a final peace offering, and then Perry made a surprise appearance in Swift's "You Need to Calm Down" music video, thus cementing the end of their years-long feud.
When Minaj wasn't nominated for Video of the Year at the MTV VMAs in 2015, she took to Twitter to express her frustrations at how hard it is for women of color who aren't pop stars to recieve recognition in the category, and laments, "If your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you will be nominated for vid of the year."
Swift, possibly because her music video for "Bad Blood" was nominated in the category, decided to weigh in and accused Minaj of trying to put female artists against one another, thus missing the points Minaj was raising about race issues and inequality in the industry.
Minaj fired back, with both respect and confusion, tweeting at Swift, "Huh? U must not be reading my tweets. Didn't say a word about u. I love u just as much. But u should speak on this."
Swift's response -- "If I win, please come up with me!! You're invited to any stage I'm ever on" -- earned the internet's ire for a while, but Swift and Minaj apparently cleared up any confusion and reconciled privately. Swift then apologized on Twitter, writing, "I thought I was being called out. I missed the point, I misunderstood, then misspoke. I'm sorry, Nicki."
Then, during the VMAs in question, the pair proved they'd moved on when they performed together on stage, with Swift joining the rapper on stage for a performance of Minaj's "The Night Is Still Young" and then "Bad Blood."
Amy Poehler and Tina Fey
One of the most unusual and seemingly unnecessary of Swift's feuds apparently pitted her against the beloved comedy duo of Fey and Poehler, who gently poked fun at the Reputation singer's famous and highly-scrutinized love life.
During their monologue at 2013 Golden Globes, Fey jokingly warned Swift -- who'd just publically broke up with Harry Styles -- to "stay away from Michael J. Fox's son." She went on to suggest that Swift "needs some me time to learn about herself."
When asked about the jokes during her Vanity Fair interview in 2013, Swift paraphrased a quote she was told by Katie Couric: "There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women."
Fey told ET at the time, "I did not see that one coming. It was a joke. It was a lighthearted joke," while Poehler told The Hollywood Reporter, "I feel bad if she was upset. I am a feminist, and she is a young and talented girl. That being said, I do agree I am going to hell. But for other reasons. Mostly boring tax stuff. "
The following year, when Poehler won a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a TV Comedy for her role in Parks and Recreation, Fey congratulated her close friend on stage and said, "I love you, and there's a special place in hell for you!"
Braun's reported $300 million acquisition of Big Machine means he now owns, through his company Ithaca Holdings, a majority of Swifts masters from her time with the label, before moving to Universal Music Group.
According to the lengthy post by Swift, she's been trying to get control of her masters back from Big Machine for years but was told she would have to "earn" them by signing back on the with record label and producing more music for them.
She goes on to accuse Braun, the new owner, of "incessant, manipulative bullying" which she claims she's "received at his hands for years." She accuses Braun of working with Kanye West and Justin Bieber to publicly humiliate her, and says that his purchase of Big Machine is the "worst case scenario" for her.
"Scooter has stripped me of my life's work, that I wasn't given an opportunity to buy," Swift wrote. "Essentially, my musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it."
As part of Swift's unexpected Tumblr post slamming Scooter Braun, one thing she pointed to as evidence of his bullying was a screenshot of a video chat between Bieber, Braun and Kanye West, which was posted around the time West and Kim Kardashian released what Swift claimed was an "illegally recorded snippet of a phone call," that famously took Swift's feud with West and Kardashian to an all new level, at the time.
"Hey Taylor. First of all i would like to apologize for posting that hurtful instagram post, at the time i thought it was funny but looking back it was distasteful and insensitive," Bieber wrote in the caption, before adding that it was Braun who had, at the time, encouraged him not to post the image. "Scooter has had your back since the days you graciously let me open up for you.! As the years have passed we haven’t crossed paths and gotten to communicate our differences, hurts or frustrations. So for you to take it to social media and get people to hate on scooter isn’t fair."
Bieber's tone then shifted as he got defensive of his friend and accused Swift of trying to manipulate the narrative, writing, "What were you trying to accomplish by posting that blog? seems to me like it was to get sympathy u also knew that in posting that your fans would go and bully scooter. Anyway, One thing i know is both scooter and i love you."
Swift has yet to respond to Bieber's post, and as her feud with Braun grows rapidly, it's unclear how their separate beef might play out.