Why Taylor Swift Doesn't Own Her Own Songs

  • Published on Aug 30, 2019
  • Taylor Swift is going head to head with Scooter Braun, the music industry heavyweight who currently owns her master recordings. Now Taylor plans to record her first six albums all over again- raising the stakes in what's becoming the highest-profile battle over an artists' masters in recent music history. We break it all down.
    Right on the release of her seventh album "Lover", Taylor by announcing she'll re-record and re-release six albums' worth of music in 2020. That means every song from "Tim McGraw" and "Teardrops on My Guitar" (off Taylor's 2008 self-titled debut) to "Look What You Made Me Do" and "...Ready For It? " (off her sixth album "Reputation"). Her goal, she says, is to finally own her own publishing catalog - regaining control over her music from Braun. But who is Scooter Braun, and why does Taylor seem to despise his ownership of her masters? How does their battle relate to Taylor's highly publicized feud with Kanye West and Kim Kardashian? And why doesn't Taylor Swift own her own music, anyway?
    It has to do with Taylor's former record company, Big Machine Records. The star was signed to Big Machine from the very beginning of her career in 2005 up until the post-"Reputation" era in 2018. In the fall of that year, she left to sign with Republic Records (a subsidiary of Universal). Then in June 2019, her former label boss, Scott Borchetta, sold Big Machine to Scooter Braun's media company. Just like that, Braun assumed ownership of everything Taylor recorded for Big Machine from 2006 to 2017. When news broke that Braun had acquired her master recordings, Taylor took to her Tumblr account, penning a long blog post that described the Braun acquisition as her "worst case scenario."
    Taylor retained her publishing rights over her songs, all of which she wrote or co-wrote. So she still gets songwriter royalties whenever her songs are streamed, license, downloaded, or purchased. But Braun, as the master rights holder, owns the sound recordings themselves. That means he gets a bigger dividend of the royalties.
    After Taylor put Braun on blast, celebrities started publicly taking sides. Halsey, Cara Delevingne, Iggy Azalea, Kelly Clarkson, and Panic! At The Disco frontman Brendon Urie quickly allied themselves with Taylor. Braun, meanwhile, got the support of Justin Bieber and Demi Lovato, two of the big-name artists he manages. (Braun has a long list of superstar clients, including Ariana Grande, Zac Brown Band, J. Balvin, and formerly Carly Rae Jepsen).
    Taylor hasn't been on warm terms with Bieber for some time now - perhaps because her best friend, Selena Gomez, was in an on-off relationship with Bieber for several rocky years. But Taylor's Tumblr letter focused mostly on Braun's association with Kanye West. Braun worked as the rapper's manager in 2016, when the whole "Famous" debacle took place. The fallout over Kanye's controversial song and video - both of which made explicit references to Taylor - eventually resulted in a PR nightmare for the pop star, and ended up shaping a lot of the symbolism and creative direction on her 2017 LP "Reputation." With that album and the ensuing tour, Taylor's career quickly recovered; but she still blames Braun for using his connections with Bieber, Kanye, and Kim Kardashian West to sabotage her image.
    The star has long been known for her clever media and marketing strategy, and her ability to dominate the tabloid news cycle has proven lucrative throughout her career. But beyond all of the drama - and the personal history that factors into this feud - at the center of Taylor's battle is a very real and fundamental debate in the music industry. Why is it so rare for artists - even mega-successful ones Taylor Swift or Beyoncé - to own their own masters? It is their life's work, after all. And why is it so hard for musicians to buy back their catalogs from record labels? Finally, why is Taylor able to re-record all her music - and what will this mean for the industry going forward? We explain and analyze possible outcomes and implications.
    #TaylorSwift #ScooterBraun #Insider
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    Why Taylor Swift Doesn't Own Her Own Songs
  • EntertainmentEntertainment

Comments • 417

  • Family Broich
    Family Broich 6 days ago

    Yeah well none of us are actual Demi fans.. so who cares if she likes scooter, we just put up with her like the rest of the world 😂🤷‍♀️

  • Rosie W
    Rosie W 8 days ago

    Kayne is disgusting!

  • Johnny Bravo
    Johnny Bravo 23 days ago

    Taylor swift..... congratulations....you have just been jewed by scooter Braun...this is what Jews do...

  • RayCHrasH
    RayCHrasH 23 days ago

    I mean she signed a contract how can she claims that she owns the masters while she was signed on a contract( i dont fully know the situation so if anyone can reply with a informative response would be much appreciated)

  • Verity Armitage
    Verity Armitage 24 days ago

    but her first two albums were the best :((((((

  • Robert Hjalmarsen
    Robert Hjalmarsen Month ago

    How is it even legal to "own" someones songs like this? This system is messed up

  • Gunnhild Edwards
    Gunnhild Edwards Month ago

    She owns the songs. She doesn't own the tracks.

  • thank u, Sweet reputation Lover

    All this "I'm not a fan of Taylor Swift but" Can you just say you love her as you love her music like she's kind, talented, and smart woman.

  • Connor Lim
    Connor Lim 2 months ago

    all this might not b a free publicity stunt ,she rest from social media for a reason,,if she show herself on social media,tv that might b meaning she will let some info out...it might that it....

  • RemyMarlandJ
    RemyMarlandJ 2 months ago

    INSIDER your bias is showing ...

  • TF4D 150
    TF4D 150 2 months ago

    Taylor is setting an example, very proud of her

  • im your paper
    im your paper 2 months ago +2

    this how many people want to slam that bRaWn and Kanye now.

  • Kishore Nehru
    Kishore Nehru 2 months ago

    Can say 'sex' , but have to censor 'female dog' cause that's offensive 😂

  • Sampurna Mondal
    Sampurna Mondal 2 months ago

    So she prooved that she got not only beauty, voice and talent but also an intelligent brain ❤❤❤❤

  • Icecream.oreos :3
    Icecream.oreos :3 2 months ago

    And she wrote all her own music!!!
    She deserves it
    She’s really smart recording it in 2020 nov. so she owns it, what a smart gal

    RETARDICAN 2 months ago

    shes a snake i dont trust her

  • Sadia Afrin
    Sadia Afrin 2 months ago

    This music company sell art for profit.A new artist doesn't have money to record own song.There the company come & made a slave.

  • LostX13
    LostX13 2 months ago +1

    Proud to still being a swiftie even when the worst happend to her.

  • Salon Ghimire
    Salon Ghimire 2 months ago

    She has my support!

  • Emma Frank
    Emma Frank 2 months ago

    ok something this video didn’t address is that half those artists that don’t own their masters are only minimally involved in the songwriting process, if at all. taylor swift writes or co-writes ALL of her songs, which definitely would be something she’d want to own.

  • Jago Gonzalez
    Jago Gonzalez 3 months ago

    CONTRACTS COBTRACTS CONTRACTS, and legal abiding terms are key. She signed them so too bad TSwift

  • Eden Gallagher
    Eden Gallagher 3 months ago

    Why would this be a PR stunt? She literally doesn't own her music, we saw the contract. She felt betrayed by Scott Borchetta who she thought actually cared about her and her career, but clearly only cared about the money (and he only proved that in his "rebuttal" letter). She doesn't want her LIFE'S WORK in the hands of someone associated with people who tried to ruin her career. And she definitely wouldn't put all the hours of time, money, and effort into recreating her ENTIRE catalogue if she wasn't passionate about this. If it were a PR stunt, it'd just blow over after Lover came out. But she's putting her career on hold in order to own her art again, something that she's shown she's passionate about for a very long time. There's been 3 or 4 separate occasions where she made deals or boycotted platforms in order to give fair pay for ALL artists. And the whole point of her Tumblr post was to warn others in the music industry to be smarter about knowing your rights in the beginning, as she said at the end of it.

  • Eden Gallagher
    Eden Gallagher 3 months ago

    7:42 She literally apologized for that recently lol, and I don't see what's wrong with her writing songs about what happened to her with Kim and Kanye? Especially since she never said their names, it was a HUGE event in her life, and she literally only wrote 3 songs focusing on it

  • Crystal C
    Crystal C 3 months ago

    What Scooter’s money hungry ass do is managing artists at their peak (see PSY, Carly Rae Jepsen etc) and not care about them later. Scooter tried to get a piece of Taylor’s cake FOR YEARS he literally reposted an insta story saying “When your friend buys Taylor Swift” as if she is an object on the shelf that can be bought, disgusting. Taylor doesn’t want to be associated w/ their problematic ass especially after 2016 when they jumped on the “It’s cool to hate Taylor Swift” train publicly. And Scott has the audacity to think that Taylor would stay silent when he decided to sell it to her enemy? HELL NO im glad that Taylor speaks up not for herself only but also for us who listens to her song, knowing that our money goes to someone who treats artists badly.

  • Kendra Johnson
    Kendra Johnson 3 months ago +1

    “Taylor is another feud, again..”
    “She seems to really hate the guy (Scooter)”
    This is why I hate stupid gossip blogs like this. It’s like Taylor’s not entitled to be mad that a guy who hates her and has bullied her for years has taken her music from her without her even knowing.

  • Joan Bookheimer
    Joan Bookheimer 3 months ago

    If he did it to Taylor, he will do it to the others he has. He is a 🐍 like the rest of Taylor's haters. Ppl suck, but life goes on

  • kimaya panash
    kimaya panash 3 months ago +3

    she might promote it in ways that most people don't approve of but you gotta admit.....

  • Spooky Power
    Spooky Power 3 months ago

    Swifties here for you Queen❤️👑 Fight Fight😘

  • Brooke Ethington
    Brooke Ethington 3 months ago

    Would she have been mad at any person who would have purchased Big Machine? Or is it specifically because it was Scooter?

    • Brooke Ethington
      Brooke Ethington 2 months ago

      Eden Gallagher Yes, she’s mad because it was Scooter. But she is mad in general, she doesn’t own her masters. So... I’m thinking she would have been angry no matter who it was. Because whoever bought Big Machine would have owned her masters

    • Eden Gallagher
      Eden Gallagher 3 months ago

      Read her post. She left bc she knew Scott would sell the label and she was sad about it but eventually came to terms with it. But when Scott sold it to someone who he knew she felt bullied by, she felt betrayed especially since she didn't know it was happening

  • Taylor Smith
    Taylor Smith 3 months ago

    Is all this information new to everyone!? This is how the industry has worked for years...I'm sorry but these artist know what's happening when they sign with these labels. You want a shot at the industry, you make deals with the devil. These people don't even write their own songs anyways. You signed a contract, maybe try reading it next time.

    • Taylor Smith
      Taylor Smith 3 months ago

      @Eden Gallagher Lol I have done my research. She actually didn't write all of her songs alone. Some of her cowriters include Liz Rose, Max Martin, Shellback, Ryan Tedder... the list goes on and on. And again doesn't matter how old she was when she signed the contract she still signed the contract. Doesn't matter your age, they still know what they are getting themselves into. Yeah it may not be right that this is the way the industry works, but its the way it works. You don't want to conform to it, you be like artists like Chance the Rapper who chose to not sign with anyone for this reason specifically. He still has a huge career without them. So yes hun I did my research, maybe you should do yours.

    • Eden Gallagher
      Eden Gallagher 3 months ago

      She signed the contract when she was 14 or 15. She wrote literally every one of her songs. And the whole point is that it's wrong that the industry works this way, we want change. Maybe do your research before commenting next time.

  • Maria Kaprial
    Maria Kaprial 3 months ago

    Taylor Swift has been a train wreck since she straightened her hair

  • Thun Nay
    Thun Nay 3 months ago +6

    I think they only asked Taylor to use her name.That's probably when she agreed it.Who in the world would say Yes for their name to be use in a song like that!

  • Nico Aguirre
    Nico Aguirre 3 months ago

    It's not PR stunts!

  • mamokete matsau
    mamokete matsau 3 months ago


  • Gwen Gray
    Gwen Gray 3 months ago

    I love scooter braun better than Taylor Swift she deserves it

    • Eden Gallagher
      Eden Gallagher 3 months ago

      You love someone who supports genocide in Yemen and chains his artists to him

  • Cobbiant Miguel
    Cobbiant Miguel 3 months ago

    Wow! I looove how you threw taylor under the bus here and saved scooter brauns ass!

  • untold truths
    untold truths 3 months ago

    She literally wants her own work, why would she jeapordize that? Y'all sound ignorant tbh

  • untold truths
    untold truths 3 months ago

    This isn't a PR stunt. When has she ever needed help promoting her album. Y'all need to stop. She debuted with a million copies in China in around 5 days and I'm pretty sure they don't care about Western shit

  • untold truths
    untold truths 3 months ago +6

    The reason Scooter wants Taylor's music so bad is because he knows it has longevity. All her albums always seem to reenter the charts even after 4-5 years. Her catalogue is vast and not many artists can relate to that so of course he's gonna be hard and try to destroy Taylor so he can have it. The good things about Taylor is that she wrote every song she sung and that's going to help her in the long run. It's also why she has been encouraging people to write their own music even if they don't know how to. I hope when she wins this, it'll push more artists to write and try and get their own work. The era of the power hungry record label owners is coming to an end and they know that. Independent artists are where it's at and with the help of Spotify, they're doing great.

  • Pranavy yadav
    Pranavy yadav 3 months ago +7

    Trying to own literally your whole life's worth of work can never be just a PR stunt. Imagine all the blood sweat and tears she put it since she was a kid to create her music for it all to be snatched by this man who boasted about how he "bought Taylor swift" on his story after all this.

  • taylor's last kiss
    taylor's last kiss 3 months ago +3

    i think it's interesting how none of the mainstream platforms such as Insider ever discusses that Ithaca Holdings, scooter's company, funds genocide in Yemen. so every stream and purchase that taylor's past recordings receive will also involuntarily help that funding. it's absolitely disgusting and i think a lot more people bring light to it

    • Eden Gallagher
      Eden Gallagher 3 months ago +1

      Right?? When all this was being exposed we tried so hard to spread it on Twitter and everyone just ignored it. Scooter probably paid them to. He's a disgusting person

  • taylor's last kiss
    taylor's last kiss 3 months ago +2

    taylor is not doing this for publicity. she's doing what she should rightfully do. and with you saying that she called out joe while promoting fearless was to gain publicity is not quite true. ellen is NOTORIOUS for grilling taylor about her relationships so that's just normal on her show. and for reputation, the only thing she did was own the snake imagery that the general public once threw at her as insults.

  • asa3009hazel
    asa3009hazel 3 months ago

    I look forward 6o the re record.

  • LovaticForLife
    LovaticForLife 3 months ago

    Nothing illegal here.... Scooter could legally buy her music and he did... Taylor is a mean girl and everyone knows that....
    She gave Kanye permission to use her name and then acted like Oh no that's wrong and misogynistic.
    And yes... Beyonce did make the best video of all time, that year when those racists chose Taylor over Queen B...

    • LovaticForLife
      LovaticForLife 3 months ago

      @Eden Gallagher why is it wrong ? America is a capitalist country, America has a free market.... nothing's wrong with buying someone's music if it is legally up for sale.

    • Eden Gallagher
      Eden Gallagher 3 months ago

      Did we say it was illegal? We said it was wrong

    • LovaticForLife
      LovaticForLife 3 months ago

      @Cobbiant Miguel Oh yes....Hater is just a word popularized by mean girls like Taylor.... "instead of fixing your flaws and shortcomings, start calling others haters who point them out" ....

    • Cobbiant Miguel
      Cobbiant Miguel 3 months ago

      Hater alert!

  • rakim
    rakim 3 months ago

    her music is garbage anyway

    • CommentFUNgames
      CommentFUNgames 14 days ago

      @rakim Yeah but you have on lots of types of musical artists

    • rakim
      rakim 14 days ago

      @CommentFUNgames I like all kind of music, rock, pop, country, jazz, classical, rap, folks, etc you name it

    • CommentFUNgames
      CommentFUNgames 14 days ago

      @rakim So what type of songs suites you?

    • rakim
      rakim 14 days ago

      @CommentFUNgames I just hate these modern pop artist/mumble rappers

    • CommentFUNgames
      CommentFUNgames 14 days ago

      @rakim You don't like many music artists do you?

  • Kathy Chan
    Kathy Chan 3 months ago +2

    Why would you think this is a PR stunt???? You think she’ll use her life’s work as a freaking joke??? If anything you guys are just using this issue for views👏👏👏👏👏👏👏

  • Savannah Murray
    Savannah Murray 3 months ago +3

    Number #1 Demi Lovato does not support Scooter Braun she supports Taylor!!!!

  • Hyperian
    Hyperian 3 months ago +1

    Then why can't she make new masters and just wait till the first masters gets devalued and buy it back in the future?

    • Eden Gallagher
      Eden Gallagher 3 months ago

      She is making new masters.... did you watch the video

  • Demtsho Tenzi
    Demtsho Tenzi 3 months ago

    If u think abt it, don u think it all happened because of big machine label..I really hate tht CEO than scooter braun..

    • Eden Gallagher
      Eden Gallagher 3 months ago +1

      ikr Scott Borchetta is disgusting, no matter what happened we 100% know he actually hates Taylor after working with her for years and pretending to care about her, bc he outright attacked her and tried to rebuttal her claims after her post

  • Arjade Alcabaza
    Arjade Alcabaza 3 months ago +5

    *Taylor Swift to Braun*
    TS: Are you Ready for it?

  • warmlittlediamond
    warmlittlediamond 3 months ago +1

    We know one thing for certain: that Scooter Braun was at least involved in Justin Bieber posting the screen shot of the facetime call between Braun, Justin and Kanye. We know this because if Justin had taken the screen-shot himself, his face would have been in the small box and Braun + Kanye's faces would have been big. That means Braun took the screen shot and sent it to Justin to post in order to mock Taylor. Given that Scooter Braun posted a story on his IG boasting about "buying" Taylor Swift, and given that one of his ex-artists (Todrick Hall) said that he heard from Scooter's own mouth that he isn't a Swift fan, it's safe to say that Braun doesn't respect Taylor Swift and probably had ulterior motives when it came to buying her masters.

  • Laurence Bay
    Laurence Bay 3 months ago

    Great video!

  • Mia Sosa
    Mia Sosa 3 months ago +4

    I’m not trying to diss Rihanna but she hasn’t written one word of any of her songs and Taylor has worked so much harder than her but who get to own her masters

    • Eden Gallagher
      Eden Gallagher 3 months ago +1

      very true, Taylor has been a writer on every one of her songs

  • i Bharti
    i Bharti 3 months ago

    I wish Taylor a big success...

  • Shauna
    Shauna 3 months ago +3

    JoJo done this too, yall should support her she was screwed over big time way more than taylor

  • nhoj defeo
    nhoj defeo 3 months ago

    taylor swift is the music industry

  • Chenalin De Los Santos
    Chenalin De Los Santos 3 months ago

    always here for taylor since day 1

  • Mark Dwight Tadina
    Mark Dwight Tadina 3 months ago

    Damn Scooter you spilled a golden wine on Taylor.

  • John Macasinag
    John Macasinag 3 months ago

    For a moment I thought she dated the guy.

  • E V
    E V 3 months ago +23

    This video is kinda biased. Good for Taylor. We will be listening the new versions of the songs!