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Taylor Swift was awarded 'Woman of the Decade'. These are the 3 best bits from her speech.

When Taylor Swift entered this decade as a 20-year-old, curly-haired and fresh-eyed country singer, little did she know the monumental accomplishments she would achieve by the time she was 30.

In ten years, the country-singer-turned-pop-artist has spearheaded the feminist movement within the male-dominated music industry. So it’s no surprise that Swift was awarded Billboard’s Woman of the Decade Award.

On Thursday night (U.S. time), on the eve of her 30th birthday, Swift accepted the award by giving a 15-minute speech, in which she chronicled her experience as a successful woman in the music industry.

Here are the three best moments.

The double standards applied to female artists.

Swift said that in the last ten years, she has “seen a lot”.

“I saw that as a female in this industry, some people will always have slight reservations about you. Whether you deserve to be there, whether your male producer or co-writer is the reason for your success, or whether it was a savvy record label. It wasn’t.

Taylor Swift Billboard speech
"I saw that as a female in this industry, some people will always have slight reservations about you." Image: Getty.

"I saw that people love to explain away a woman's success in the music industry, and I saw something in me change due to this realisation."

Swift later added, "In the last 10 years I have watched as women in this industry are criticised and measured up to each other and picked at for their bodies, their romantic lives, their fashion, or have you ever heard someone say about a male artist, I really like his songs but I don't know what it is, there's just something about him I don't like? No! That criticism is reserved for us!"

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The backlash Taylor Swift has received over 10 years.

Swift explained that in the past 10 years she decided she 'would be what they said she couldn't be' and hence began 'accommodating' and 'over-correcting' in response to the hate to which she was subjected.

"They're saying I'm dating too much in my 20s? Okay, I'll stop, I'll just be single. For years. Now they're saying my album Red is filled with too many breakup songs? Okay, okay, I'll make one about moving to New York and deciding that really my life is more fun with just my friends. Oh, they're saying my music is changing too much for me to stay in country music? All right. Okay, here's an entire genre shift and a pop album called 1989.

"Now it's that I'm showing you too many pictures of me with my friends, okay, I can stop doing that too. Now I'm actually a calculated manipulator rather than a smart businesswoman? Okay, I'll disappear from public view for years. Now I'm being cast a villain to you? Okay, here's an album called Reputation and there are lots of snakes everywhere."

On her feud with Scooter Braun.

After Scooter Braun’s company Ithaca Holdings acquired Big Machine Label Group, the label that released all of Taylor Swift’s studio albums, Swift entered a public feud with the celebrity manager.

Swift said that for years she begged for the opportunity to own the rights to her own work, but was always denied the chance. She left the label in 2018.

In the Billboard speech, Swift slammed Scooter Braun once again.

"After I was denied the chance to purchase my music outright, my entire catalogue was sold to Scooter Braun's Ithaca Holdings in a deal that I'm told was funded by the Soros Family, 23 Capital, and the Carlyle Group," Swift said.

"Scooter never contacted me or my team to discuss it prior to the sale or even when it was announced. I'm fairly certain he knew exactly how I would feel about it though. And let me just say that the definition of the toxic male privilege in our industry is people saying, ‘But he's always been nice to me,’ when I'm raising valid concerns about artists and their rights to own their music. And of course he's nice to you. If you're in this room, you have something he needs.

"The fact is that private equity is what enabled this man to think, according to his own social media post, that he could buy me. But I'm obviously not going willingly."

You can watch her full speech here.


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