The Kim-Kanye-Taylor Feud, Explained For People Who Don’t Know What The Hell Is Going On
From award show interruptions to character assassination.
Hello! Have you found yourself waking up on this day, the day of our lord 18 July 2016, and discovered that everyone is talking about a thing you just don't understand? Something to do with these three people right here?
"I want to engage in conversations with my friends but I can't be bothered to read all of the many articles on this situation, which seems convoluted and weird!" I hear you cry. Well, don't worry, friend, because I am here for you. I am here to explain. Please sit back, relax, and enjoy the wild world of celebrity feuds.
The year was 2009, and Taylor Swift was a youthful, curly-haired country singer who had just won her first MTV Video Music Award for her song "You Belong With Me". Also there was Kanye West and his girlfriend at the time, Amber Rose, but that's a completely different story.
In a stunt that would go on to coin the term "doing a Kanye"*, Kanye interrupted Taylor's acceptance speech to tell everyone that he thought Beyoncé should have won the award for her "Single Ladies" music video.
Because 2009 was a simpler time, it seemed as though the feud ended there. Everyone got on with their lives, and a few years later, Kanye married TV personality and business mogul Kim Kardashian.
We all assumed that the feud was ongoing, but alas! The world was rocked to its core when photos emerged of Taylor and Kanye (and Kim) enjoying each other's company at the 2015 Grammys.
The friendship seemed solidified at the 2015 VMAs – almost exactly six years after the original drama – when Taylor presented Kanye with the Vanguard Award.
Kanye even sent Taylor a gigantic bunch of flowers. She posted a photo of them on Instagram with the hashtags #KanTay2020 and #BFFs. Just thinking about it makes me nostalgic for a life free of drama.
But because it's 2016 and we're not allowed to have nice things, the friendship ended with the release of Kanye West's single "Famous".
Obviously, this caused a mini-tornado of drama among Taylor's friends and family, and Kanye West jumped to his own defence, tweeting that he had asked Taylor's permission to release the song and she had given him her blessing.
HOWEVER! In an official statement, Taylor's publicist told BuzzFeed News that she had never been told about the lyric, and that Kanye had simply asked her to promote his single on her Twitter account:
Kanye did not call for approval, but to ask Taylor to release his single “Famous” on her Twitter account. She declined and cautioned him about releasing a song with such a strong misogynistic message. Taylor was never made aware of the actual lyric, “I made that bitch famous.”
Taylor then seemed to reference the shitstorm during an acceptance speech at the 2016 Grammys where she talked about the importance of taking credit for your own success.
OK, so it's simple, right? Kanye released a song about Taylor that she didn't know about, and Taylor was upset. Right? WRONG. Because Kim Kardashian did an interview with GQ, and she took NO PRISONERS.
“[Taylor] totally approved that [lyric],” Kim says, shaking her head in annoyance. “She totally knew that that was coming out. She wanted to all of a sudden act like she didn’t. I swear, my husband gets so much shit for things [when] he really was doing proper protocol and even called to get it approved.”
And while Taylor attempted to find somewhere less shady to relax, Kim continued to go the fuck in. A few days ago, E! released this preview clip of Keeping Up With the Kardashians in which Kim addresses the whole messy situation.
Meanwhile, Taylor had found herself engrossed in an entirely separate shadestorm involving her ex-boyfriend Calvin Harris. I can't go into this here, because if I do, this will never end. But, basically, this:
So. Are you still here? Because we're almost at the good part. Remember that KUWTK preview? Well, that was for last night's episode. And yesterday also happened to be International Snake Day (no, I didn't know this was a thing either).
Kim also tweeted this while the episode was airing in reference to her conversation with Kourtney about Taylor, Kanye, and "Famous".
AND THEN, in what will go down in history as THE PETTIEST THING TO EVER HAPPEN, Kim Kardashian published video evidence of the phone call during which Taylor Swift gave Kanye West her permission to release "Famous".
You can find the full transcript of the phone call here, but let's be honest, you're reading this so you don't have to read anything else, so here's the most important part:
Taylor Swift: Yeah. I mean, go with whatever line you think is better. It’s obviously very tongue-in-cheek either way. And I really appreciate you telling me about it, that’s really nice!
Kanye West: Yeah. I just felt I had a responsibility to you as a friend. I mean, thanks for being so cool about it.