Taylor Swift Is TIME's 2023 Person of the Year


You can’t shake this off: Taylor Swift is Time’s Person of the Year.

The pop star topped several other prominent contenders previously announced by the publication, from tech titan Sam Altman to Chinese President Xi Jinping. Even Barbie was on the shortlist. 

Primarily, she was a positive force in a world rocked by so much negative news in the past year, said Time editor editor-in-chief Sam Jacobs.

“We picked a choice of someone who represents joy,” Jacobs said in an appearance Wednesday morning on NBC’s “Today Show.”

Swift’s “Eras Tour” proved to be one of the biggest events in pop history. Not only did the star sell-out show after show, but her fans traveled throughout the country to attend the concerts. In all, it’s estimated that Swiftie spending tied to the tour reached $5 billion, with businesses large and small benefitting. 

And that’s on top of Swift’s continued success on the pop charts, with her release of two albums, “Speak Now (Taylor’s Version)” and “1989 (Taylor’s Version).”

Swift’s relationship with Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce has also been a buzzy story — and a financial boon for the National Football League. 

Swift’s impact will likely extend far beyond 2023, of course. Her touring will continue in 2024. And as veteran music journalist Holly Gleason told MarketWatch, Swift is serving as an inspiration to a generation of young women. 

“Whether you’re a little girl who wants to start a business or write a song or publish a book … whatever it is you want to do, she’s the role model that says, ‘Hell, yeah,'” Gleason said.

So you’ve heard about Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift — from the media, from the fans, from the NFL, from Kelce on his own podcast. And now, finally, we’re hearing about it from Swift too.

The global superstar — named Time’s 2023 Person of the Year, given by the magazine to the individual its editors feel had the most influence on the world that year — opened up to journalist Sam Lanksy in her cover story about her relationship with the Kansas City Chiefs tight end and when it all really started.

“This all started when Travis very adorably put me on blast on his podcast, which I thought was metal as hell,” she told Time

Fans of Swift may have known that Kelce shouted out to Swift on his “New Heights” podcast over the summer after he attended her “Eras Tour” stop in Kansas City and attempted to give her his phone number to no avail. What’s new here is Swift confirming when, exactly, they started seeing each other.

“We started hanging out right after that,” she said. “So we actually had a significant amount of time that no one knew, which I’m grateful for because we got to get to know each other. By the time I went to that first game, we were a couple. I think some people think that they saw our first date at that game? We would never be psychotic enough to hard-launch a first date.” 

Swift further opened up about the ways they support each other publicly: Swift attending various Chiefs games since the start of the NFL season, both in Kansas City and on the road, and Kelce traveling overseas to Argentina to see her “Eras” show in Buenos Aires.

“When you say a relationship is public, that means I’m going to see him do what he loves, we’re showing up for each other, other people are there and we don’t care,” she said. “The opposite of that is you have to go to an extreme amount of effort to make sure no one knows that you’re seeing someone. And we’re just proud of each other.”

The NFL this season has leaned into the power of Swift and her fans’ allegiance to her, cutting to the superstar in between plays and drives up the field. She was spotted in various moments with Kelce’s mom, Donna Kelce, and sometimes with her famous friends. The Oct. 1 matchup between the Chiefs and the New York Jets, with Swift in attendance, was the second most-watched NFL game of 2023 after the Super Bowl.

Speaking to Time, Swift was cheekily reacting to the media frenzy.

“I don’t know how they know what suite I’m in,” she said. “There’s a camera, like, a half-mile away, and you don’t know where it is, and you have no idea when the camera is putting you in the broadcast, so I don’t know if I’m being shown 17 times or once.” 

“I’m just there to support Travis,” she added. “I have no awareness of if I’m being shown too much and pissing off a few dads, Brads, and Chads.”

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