Taylor Swift has changed. She used to play it safe. Not anymore.
Here's what I wrote about her a few years ago:
If you ask Taylor Swift what she thinks about Obama, this is what she’ll say…
Why? Because Taylor Swift isn’t an idiot. She knows if she says anything, she’s going to piss off half her fans.
And pissing off half her fans would cost her a lot of money.
Even if you’re known to be "conservative." Even if you’re known to be "Christian."
It doesn’t matter.
Every time you open your mouth about a hot issue, whether it be stem cells, abortion, the Gaza Strip, gay marriage, or climate change, you’re repelling some of your audience.
Is letting your opinion be heard worth the price you’ll pay?
If so, keep talking. But if not, be like Taylor Swift and keep your mouth shut.
It's a different world now. Things have changed. And one of those those things is that Taylor Swift is sharing how she feels about politics and social issues.
The result, just like what happened when Nike did something similar, is that fans are divided. But according to Kamari Guthrie of Vote.org, more than 65,000 people registered to vote in the 24-hour period following her post.
Maybe she saw the response Nike got and thought it was a safer environment to jump into. Maybe it had something to do with her experience with sexual assault.
Or maybe she wants to be a true artist who does work that matters.
You have a big opportunity to change things via your podcast. You have an opportunity to impact lives, you have an opportunity to make the world better, and you have an opportunity to spread a message that's important to you.
But none of this will happen if you're afraid to speak up.
I wasn't wrong about what I said in 2014. And everything that could have happened to Taylor Swift for speaking up then can still happen.
People are still going to get mad when you speak your mind, regardless of what you say, and you're going to lose some of your audience.
But maybe it's worth it.
If you want to run your podcast like a kid trying to be popular in his high school's lunchroom, by all means play it safe. If you want to do something significant with your podcast though, you need to speak up.
It's a risk. But you'll find plenty of people waiting to support you when you take the leap.