Taylor Swift Reveals Surprising Industry Reaction to Spotify Decision

Taylor Swift
Christopher Polk/Getty Images for NARAS

It's easy to forget that when Taylor Swift announced in August that her fifth album, 1989, would leave her country roots behind to be a purely pop project, there were a lot of skeptics -- as she might say, a lot of haters ready to hate, hate, hate. But that was four months ago.

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The world's biggest pop star (who has a Twitter following of more than 48 million) has broken records since, with her album selling nearly 1.3 million copies during its first week -- the biggest single-week number in 12 years -- at a time when record sales are in dizzying free fall.

Swift, 25, also became the first female artist to have back-to-back No. 1 singles on Billboard's Hot 100 ("Shake It Off" and "Blank Space"). And her risky decision not to stream 1989 on the world's fastest-growing service, Spotify, magnified the debate over fair royalties during the digital age.

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"I didn't think that it would be shocking to anyone," says Swift. "With as many ways as artists are personalizing their musical distribution, it didn't occur to me that this would be anything that anyone would talk about. But I could never have expected so many text messages, emails and phone calls from other artists, writers and producers saying thank you."

This article originally appeared in THR.com.

 

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