In an interview with Time for its Person of the Year issue, Swift recalled when public sentiment toward her turned between the release of 2014's 1989, her first full-blown pop album, and 2017's Reputation. "I had all the hyenas climb on and take their shots," she said of the attitude towards her during the period. But it was Ye's song "Famous," in which he rapped "I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex / Why? I made that bitch famous," and its subsequent fallout that caused that biggest turn in public opinion.
Ye claimed, in a since-deleted tweet, that Swift consented to the lyrics, which she denied. Kim Kardashian, who was married to Kanye at the time, released a video that showed a private phone call between the rapper and Swift. The edited clip quickly spread and did not explicitly show Swift consenting to the line, but was edited in a way to make it seem she did. Looking back at it now, she said it felt like "a career death" at the time.
"Make no mistake—my career was taken away from me," she continued. "You have a fully manufactured frame job, in an illegally recorded phone call, which Kim Kardashian edited and then put out to say to everyone that I was a liar. That took me down psychologically to a place I’ve never been before. I moved to a foreign country. I didn’t leave a rental house for a year. I was afraid to get on phone calls. I pushed away most people in my life because I didn’t trust anyone anymore. I went down really, really hard."
Swift was called by "a snake" by detractors, Kim K among them. She would later reclaim the "snake" imagery for her album Reputation. "I thought that moment of backlash was going to define me negatively for the rest of my life," she added.
It's been a huge year for Swift, who re-released her 2022 album Midnights in a new edition featuring a "Karma" remix with ice Spice, and dropped re-recorded versions of her albums Speak Now and 1989. On top of that, she's also embarked on a hugely successful tour, which eventually led to the release of the Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour concert film. The project, distributed by AMC Theatres and Cinemark Theatres, grossed over $249 million at theaters.
Elsewhere in the Time interview, she opened up about how Kelly Clarkson inspired her to re-record her albums to regain control following the sale of Big Machine Records—whom she released all her albums with up to 2017's Reputation—to Scooter Braun.
"I was so knocked on my ass by the sale of my music, and to whom it was sold,” she said. "I’d run into Kelly Clarkson and she would go, ‘Just redo it.' My dad kept saying it to me too. I’d look at them and go, ‘How can I possibly do that?’ Nobody wants to redo their homework if on the way to school, the wind blows your book report away.