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The Swiftie Ethics of Listening to the Leaked ‘Midnights’ Album Before It Was Released

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Wake Forest chapter.

Taylor Swift’s most recent album, Midnights, was strategically scheduled to be released
at midnight on October 21st. Let me preface this by stating that I would not call myself a true Swiftie. Sure, I loved her in my teens, but I don’t truly stay updated on Taylor Swift’s career like I used to, and frankly, I wasn’t planning on staying up until midnight just to hear the album.
However, the album was leaked before its release, and one of my friends, Liza (who is
also a Taylor Swift fan but not a Swiftie), gained access to the link. When she turned to me and told me the news, we both pushed aside our homework that was laid across the library tables, took one airpod each, and prepared ourselves to listen to all thirteen songs right then and there.
About seven songs into the album, marking our favorites as we went, Liza received a text
from her friend, who is, in fact, a self-proclaimed Swiftie. Liza had sent her friend the link,
thinking her Swiftie friend would be beyond thrilled. However, instead, she told Liza that she couldn’t listen to the album early “because that is not what Taylor wanted.”

Although Liza and I paused the album for a few minutes to contemplate what we were
doing and whether it was “bad” of us not to wait till the real release, we collectively decided that we were already too far in to stop listening now, and frankly what difference was four hours going to make!?
So, what do you think? What would you have done? Were Liza and I in the wrong for
listening early? Or does it not matter?

Emma Shaich

Wake Forest '26

Hi! My name is Emma Shaich, and I am a freshman at Wake Forest. I am considering majoring in Business and minoring in either Studio Art or Psychology, but I also love writing. I am from Boston, MA, and enjoy spending time with my friends, family, and dogs, Teddy and Ginger. I also love doing anything creative (drawing, painting, baking, etc.)!!!