Magazine Publishes Anonymous Taylor Swift Review, Citing Potential Threats From Fans

Paste Magazine suggested that it was safer to release its scathing review of "The Tortured Poets Department" with no byline attached.

Paste Magazine on Friday published a withering review of “The Tortured Poets Department,” the massive pop star’s latest album. The review was issued with no name attached, and the digital magazine said that this was for the writer’s safety.

“There is no byline on this review due to how, in 2019 when Paste reviewed ‘Lover,’ the writer was sent threats of violence from readers who disagreed with the work,” Paste tweeted, referring to another Swift album. “We care more about the safety of our staff than a name attached to an article.”

“The Tortured Poets Department,” released Friday, has so far received mostly positive reviews from critics, though some have been mixed. Rolling Stone raved over the “adult heartbreak” of what may be Swift’s “most personal album yet.” On the other hand, The New York Times noted that the singer-songwriter “could use an editor.”

But Paste’s review was especially biting, contending that Swift “can’t help but infantilize” her fans. It takes aim in particular at the album’s “irredeemable, relentlessly cringe” lyrics, at one point quipping: “This is your songwriter of the century? Open the schools.”

Shortly after the review was published, a writer who noted that she had “nothing to do” with the piece tweeted screenshots of disparaging messages she was receiving from Swifties who were convinced that she penned it.

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