Taylor Swift is not having a great couple of weeks. While we haven't heard much from her since the #KimExposedTaylorParty went down, she is in the news again for being given an apparent secret weapon from Instagram that allows the pop star to censor the comments section on her own posts.
The information was originally reported on by The Times and has fans, and social media users, angry over the fact that their favorite social media sites are giving celebrities — and this one, in particular — a huge amount of power over what their fans post.
The tool gives Swift the power to shape the comments on her own profile, enabling her to remove negative comments on the page by the hundreds, or even thousands, without having to go one by one.
While the ability to remove posts was originally meant to keep spam advertisements off of high-volume posts, it is now being used by Swift to remove the seemingly countless number of snake emoji posts she is receiving since Kim Kardashian, Kanye West and Calvin Harris all called her out for her manipulativeness. Considering the volume of snakes that have popped up on her comments in recent weeks, you can see how the timing is raising a lot of eyebrows.
Fans have taken to social media to express their anger over the double standard of Swift getting this preferential treatment while other stars, and normal people, face bullying daily and just have to deal with it:
Lmao Taylor Swift made Instagram delete people's mean comments under her pics. 26 going on 12 💀😭— Myleeza (@MyleezaKardash) July 16, 2016
omg go comment a "🐍" on taylor swift's picture and instagram will literally remove your comment omg i'm deceased— lol fuck off. (@omfgarsal) July 17, 2016
An Instagram spokesperson spoke to MailOnline saying, "We're always looking for better ways to help people prevent spammy or inappropriate comments on Instagram." Of course, the photo sharing app has a huge vested interest in keeping Taylor popular: she's one of a small group of celebs who will be paid millions for sponsored posts on the site.
It is troubling to see censorship on social media, but even more so to see that people posting snake emojis is was what spurred the company to begin giving celebrities this power, as opposed to the racism, hate, and daily threats other people face.
Either way, this is just another move in the very wrong direction for Swift. who has seen herself go from America's sweetheart to somewhat of a celebrity pariah in just weeks.
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