Singer and populist intellectual property icon Taylor Swift earned near-universal praise earlier this year when she was credited with revamping Apple Music’s artist payment system through sheer force of will and chiding tumbler preaching alone. Great, but on the other hand, she’s been ripping off photographers all along.

Grumblings about Tayla’s concert photography policy started rumbling across the Web after her perfectly calculated “open letter” to Apple made headlines. But now, the Montreal Gazette is explaining exactly why the photo contract is a garbage ripoff, and why they refused to sign it when Swift last came to town:

You can view a larger copy of the contract here:

In short, Taylor Swift asks photographers who cover her shows to agree to the following conditions:

  • Photos taken during the concert can only be published once and then deleted
  • She can use the photos you took, forever, anywhere, for free, to promote herself
  • Taylor Swift and her team have the right to “confiscate and/or destroy” your photos and photographic equipment (cameras, memory cards, etc.) for any reason at any point during the show, without compensation
  • You may be injured by Taylor Swift or her team without warning or compensation. Watch out!

These are fucking crazy things to ask of photographers, or any humans at all, really. But it’s especially galling when the person doing the asking has positioned herself as a champion of the common artist, rather than a champion of Taylor Swift. If only there were someone as famous as Taylor Swift who could write a scolding open letter to Taylor Swift.

[Montreal Gazette]

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