Taylor Swift's name has been on everyone's tongues for years, and there's no sign of that changing anytime soon. However, what is changing are people's attitudes toward her.
At a young age, Swift quickly became the epitome of the "girl next door" stereotype. It didn't come as much of a surprise, considering she was young, cute and equipped with a voice most singers would kill for. However, the longer she was in the spotlight, the more the views toward her started to shift. America's Sweetheart started to become known as "That Crazy Girl Who Writes Songs About Every Guy She's Ever Met."
Every week there seemed to be a new story about who her next "victim" was. Several celebrities, such as Harry Styles and John Mayer, have been linked to her over the years. Swift's love life was front-page news on every tabloid, and nearly everything else about her paled in comparison. Even discussions about her music weren't actually about the music itself; they were just a thinly veiled excuse to analyze who the songs could possibly be about.
With the release of her newest album, 1989, everything seems to be turning around for Swift's media portrayal. She's still the same girl she's always been, but now she exudes a sense of confidence that hasn't gone unnoticed. She's calling out media outlets for their excessive and often false reports on her relationships, even going as far as to tweet "As my 25th birthday present from the media, I'd like for you to stop accusing all my friends of dating me."
Even her music, with satirical songs such as Blank Space, is a way for her to strike back against the public image that has been built up around her. Swift has taken control of how the public views her and, as a result, she's beginning to win over even her toughest critics.
"I first thought she was annoying because a lot of her songs were just about boys and typical teenage girl stuff, but now that she's older and uses feminism to empower herself, I find her music more appealing," said Emily Barron, a junior at Dixie Hollins High.
Swift was the first artist to have an album go platinum in 2014, and her infectious songs can be heard nearly everywhere. Taylor Swift, the girl with the "long list of ex-lovers," is taking charge and all that's left to do now is wait to see what happens next.