Sometime last year, Taylor Swift got a Tumblr and I was skeptical. I didn’t think it was actually her. However, I follow a few Swifties on Tumblr and they confirmed that it was indeed her official account.
As soon as the account was created, Taylor began interacting with her fans. By searching the Taylor Swift tag, she was able to follow her fans, like and reblog their posts and even reply to them or send them messages. This was really cool to see especially because I didn’t have too much respect for Taylor during her Red era. This was when she was receiving a lot of hate, because the media was buzzing about how she was always dating men and then writing songs about them. A lot of these rumors really affected my perception of her. Then, she joined Tumblr and released 1989 and I started to gain a lot more respect for her. Her Tumblr presence started to grow so much that her fans even gave an official name to it: Taylurking.
My first exposure to Taylurking came around the holidays. I saw posts surfacing that some fans had received replies from Taylor on some of their posts with the Santa emoji. More fans started to receive this reply and they started to realize Taylor was planning something big.
They were right. Taylor looked through the Tumblrs of some lucky fans and went shopping for them based on their interests. She packed the gifts up in boxes, wrote out cards and sent all of the goodies to her fans. She even went to a fan’s house to surprise her and her young son with gifts. For a more in depth look at what she did, as well as the reactions of her fans, check out this video.
It was such a kind thing for Taylor to do. She honestly could have just sent a bunch of fans money or concert tickets, but she decided to take the time to learn about them through their Tumblrs and send them personalized gifts she knew they would enjoy. I even read an article about how Taylor sent a watercolor painting to a super-fan named Rebekah Bortniker and paid $1,989 toward Rebekah’s student loans (album reference). Taylor knew that her fan was in college struggling with student loans, so she did her part to try to help her as much as she could.
Around Valentine’s Day, I saw rumors on Tumblr that Taylor was Taylurking again, this time with envelope and heart emojis for Valentine’s Day. I didn’t know if this was true, but then I saw a whole bunch of posts where people posted videos of themselves reacting and Taylor replied with such sweet notes.
I also saw a post where a fan told Taylor about a breakup and Taylor responded with advice as if they were old friends who talked all the time.
The playlist did it. I officially gained more respect for Taylor Swift than I knew what to do with. I also had a very strange desire to make her my best friend. I’ve seen celebrities interact with their fans and do sweet things for them before, but never quite like this. I may not be a Swiftie, but the amount of love I gained for Taylor after my look into Taylurking may as well label me as one.