Scooter Braun vs. Taylor Swift: A Timeline

Celebrity talent manager Scooter Braun purchases Taylor Swift’s music catalogue, and frenzy ensued.

We have watched Taylor Swift rise from a country singer to political advocate. Though she has gained a voice to be reckoned with, she has adversely gained public enemies in the process. As a result, any developments in the music world related to Taylor inherently come with a flurry of star-studded hostilities, rivalries, and obviously social media blow outs.

Over the weekend, Scooter Braun partnered with Scott Borchetta to acquire a $300 million deal for Big Machine, marking the birth of another independent music powerhouse. Composed of School Boy Records, Atlas Music Publishing, Big Machine Music, and the artist management and services company, SB projects, the company has acquired jaw-dropping success. For Scooter, it’s a major win: a new partnership with the president/CEO of Big Machine Records and his title on a company with powerful capabilities and striking income streams.

Nonetheless, underneath the glitz and the glam, Scooter’s decision is a major blow to Taylor Swift’s dignity and personal achievement. To break it down, Taylor Swift signed a new record deal with Republic Records at the end of last year, when her 10-year contract with Big Machine came to a close. Taylor announced that she would independently own the master recordings of all her music moving forward, while Big Machine Records maintained the rights to the masters of her six previous albums. Therefore, the valuable deal enables Scooter to profit from sales and the use of Taylor’s old music for eternity.

Taylor responded to the management development in a heartfelt Tumblr post on Sunday. Taylor not only revealed that she has seen Scooter as a manipulative bully for years but claims that she found out about the purchase at the same time that the rest of the world did—no one personally let her know before it was publicized. Swift expressed how directly the deal shatters her agency and autonomy over the faith of her records: “my musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it.” As one would assume, Swift makes it clear that this is more than just a story about her and Scooter. Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are inevitably brought into her outrage, noted as distinct sources of Scooter’s harassment towards her over the years.

No one tried to hide their adamant reactions towards the feud. After impulsively posting (then deleting) a photo that directly criticized Taylor for attention-seeking and speaking falsely of Scooter, Justin Bieber posted a predictably lengthy, apology post that meddled between defending Scooter and attempting to come off as a loving, peaceful friend for Taylor. It gets better: after Hailey Baldwin commented “gentleman,” Cara Delevingne shot back with a comment criticizing Bieber’s flawed apology and his own sense of self, insisting that he should spend “more time trying to understand women and respecting their valid reaction.” Celebrities have progressed to choose sides of the growing war; Demi Lovato posted an insta story insisting that Scooter is a “good man,” Halsey tweeted “Taylor Swift is a huge reason why I always insisted to write my own music,” and Nicki Minaj, Selena Gomez, Rihanna, Adele and Lana Del Rey have unfollowed Scooter on social media. The aftermath of the conflict speaks volumes to the large-scaled impact relationships between writers and managers have throughout the music industry.

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