The Strangest Conspiracy Theories About Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift should need no introduction, but occupying the singular space in the world of pop culture that she does, lets introduce her anyway. If you're most people, you know her as the multiple Grammy-winning, ker-billion album selling singer-songwriter who has dated a famous guy or two, and who drops more Easter eggs in her songs, videos, and social media posts than you ever found during every Easter morning throughout the entirety of your childhood. If, however, you are not most people — if you are among the enlightened few who know that Reptilian overlords secretly rule the world, space aliens abducted your Grandma, and celebrities are killed and replaced by clones like, all the time — then you know her as the devil incarnate.

Yes, it is sadly unsurprising to know that in the wild-eyed, logic-defying world of hardcore conspiracy theories, there are just a truckload of said theories having to do with Swift, running the gamut from the relatively mundane to the truly ... well, cuckoo-bananas-whack-a-doo. 

A swinger of elections

Right around the time in 2023 that Taylor Swift started dating a pretty famous football player, a particularly virulent conspiracy theory popped up around her — one that was outlined with specificity by right-wing podcaster Mike Crispi during the AFC Championship Game in January 2024, in which Swift's boyfriend, Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, was playing. Swift was attending the game, as she did many of her boyfriend's games throughout the season, and Crispi, clear-eyed as ever, was not afraid to shout the truth from the digital rooftops. "All to spread DEMOCRAT PROPAGANDA," he posted on X (formerly Twitter). "Calling it now: KC wins, goes to [the] Super Bowl, Swift comes out at the halftime show and 'endorses' Joe Biden with Kelce at midfield." 

The "Taylor Swift is a secret government shill helping Joe Biden get re-elected" theory proved to have surprising legs. In a poll released on February 14 by Monmouth University, fully 18% of respondents had not only heard the theory but believed it to be true. Of course, two-thirds of the poll's respondents approved of Swift's well-publicized (and highly successful) efforts to motivate her fan base to vote, so that Democrat propaganda is obviously working pretty well. However, this theory's end game failed to materialize, and the Chiefs did indeed win the Super Bowl — but there was no midfield endorsement of Biden. Weird.

She's a psy op

Believe it or not, a goodly number of right-wing types have taken the "Taylor Swift is helping Biden" notion to an extreme: Not only is she absolutely doing that, they say, but she is actually a full-on government agent, a CIA "psy op" (psychological operation) designed to brainwash regular folks into following the godless, degenerate liberal agenda. Sounds pretty out there, right? Well, if it was so ridiculous, would it have been given plausibility with a straight face by a host on a major news network? Which one, you ask? Why does that matter?

Okay, so it was Fox News' Jesse Watters who gave this lunacy an actual airing on national television. Watters aired a clip from a video showing officials from a government think tank discussing how social media influencers can help combat online misinformation; one of them mentioned Swift's name. Despite said officials having no clear connection to the Pentagon, Watters deadpanned, "Yeah, that's real. The Pentagon psyop unit pitched NATO on turning Taylor Swift into an asset." He quickly added the disclaimer that he didn't actually have any evidence of this. Incredibly, the actual Pentagon, by way of spokesperson Sabrina Singh, felt compelled to respond hilariously in a statement (via Politico): "As for this conspiracy theory, we are going to shake it off, '" Singh wrote. "But ... we still need Congress to approve our supplemental budget request as Swift-ly as possible so we can be out of the woods with potential fiscal concerns."

She's a Satanist clone

Over the years, there have been a whole lot of celebrities — mostly musicians — who have been accused of being in league with Lucifer. But if ever there was a celebrity for whom those accusations were all but inevitable, it is Taylor Swift. Consider: in 1966, a guy named Anton Lavey founded the Church of Satan, which exists to this day. (The church does not actually believe in Satan, or God, for that matter, but try convincing its detractors of that.) His daughter, Zeena (pictured above), was once the spokesperson for the church and actively involved in its promotion. 

What does this have to do with Swift, you ask? Just this: Zeena and Swift bear a striking resemblance to each other. So much so that conspiracy theorists jumped to the obvious conclusion — that Swift is a clone of Zeena Lavey, created to lull impressionable youth over to the dark side through the power of solidly crafted pop tunes. In the 1990s, Zeena distanced herself from the church, became a Buddhist and a graphic artist, and changed her last name to Schreck; she has never publicly commented on her supposed cloning.

Taylor Swift has an evil twin

In 2015, yet another weird theory involving someone who looks a heck of a lot like Taylor Swift popped up online. According to this one, Swift is not a clone, but she does have a double — perhaps even a twin. An evil twin. Who dressed up like a sexy Ronald McDonald to make a commercial for hamburgers. In Japan. Okay, so maybe "weird" wasn't quite strong enough.

The oddly disturbing clip is from 2006 — and if you just imagine that you're watching Swift wearing the worst Halloween costume ever while seductively enticing you with a cheap burger, it's really quite easy to see how this one got started. So ... what is Swift's twin doing in exile in Japan? Not stealing Taylor's thunder while she ascends the heights of the music world, that's what. Why is she evil? Well, if you were stuck making Japanese McDonald's commercials while your twin became a beloved billionaire pop star, you'd turn evil, too. 

She writes spy novels under a different name

If you're one of the six or seven people who took in the $200 million, Henry Cavill-starring flop-ola "Argylle" during its mercifully brief 2024 theatrical run, you may have been inspired to do so after reading the novel of the same name, which was also released in 2024 and was credited to an author by the name of Elly Conway. This is a pen name; Conway is a character in the novel (and the film, portrayed by Bryce Dallas Howard), a spy novelist whose work begins to mirror real life. The novel was actually written by bestselling author Terry Hayes, in collaboration with fellow scribe Tammy Cohen — but if the internet is to be believed, this is all a bunch of mularkey, because "Argylle" was actually written by (wait for it) Taylor Swift.

As evidence, Swifties point to a bunch of weird, random details in the trailer for "Argylle," in one of Swift's videos, and in some of the pop star's social media posts; given Swift's penchant for dropping Easter eggs, it's perhaps understandable how fans could be enchanted into reading things that aren't there into nearly anything she says or does. Hayes, though, was just as understandably mystified by the whole thing. "There's a lot of crazy people in the world," the author told Inside Edition. "To string all of these things together and come up with that solution, I thought was pretty wild."

She is gay

Taylor Swift has famously dated, like, maybe two or three famous men, and she seems pretty psyched about her relationship with Travis Kelce. (And why not? He seems like a cool dude.) But that has not stopped one subset of Swift's fans from insisting that there are coded messages in her music alluding to the fact that all of these relationships are for show — that, in fact, she doesn't like dudes, but chicks. These fans are known on social media as... wait for it... "Gaylors."

These fans back up their hypothesis with (of course) boatloads of misinterpreted lyrics, supposed symbolism in Swift's videos and innuendos in her social media posts, and the fact that she's really good friends with some women, such as supermodel Karlie Kloss (pictured with Swift above). Swift, a staunch ally of the LGBTQ community, nevertheless can't help but be a little haunted by the whole thing. In the prologue to her version of her hit album "1989," she explained that for a while there, she swore off publicly hanging out with guys — even friends — because of the intense scrutiny around her love life. "If I only hung out with my female friends, people couldn't sensationalize or sexualize that — right?" she wrote. "I would learn later on that people could and people would."

She and Harry Styles totally killed a guy

Okay, so bust this: You know that Taylor Swift and Harry Styles, the British singer and actor, dated for a bit back in 2012, right? And that most fans think the tune "Style," from "1989," is a nod to that relationship, yeah? Alright, well, according to a few of Swift's more enlightened fans, it is certainly that. It's also a confession, right there on one of the biggest hit album of the teens, to a deadly hit and run. The deed was committed by Styles, who was driving — with Swift in the passenger seat — when they struck a pedestrian out on a lonely road, killing them. That's right: Two of the biggest pop stars on the planet totally killed a guywith Styles' slick ride suddenly becoming a getaway car.

The evidence is supposedly all over "1989," but particularly in "Style," where Swift sings of her boyfriend that "he can't keep his wild eyes on the road," on a journey that "could end in burning flames." Not to fear, though, because when they "come crashing down" (into some poor person's face) they "come back every time" (because Swift is rich and powerful enough to cover it up). Pretty obvious, huh? Why would Swift confess to a crime in a hit song, you ask? Well, she sure loves her Easter eggs.

She's in the Illuminati... and the Kanye incident was her induction

Now it's time to talk about the Illuminati, that devil-worshiping, world-running, celebrity clone-making secret society that is so secret that every conspiracy-minded butthead with a YouTube channel knows every last detail about them. Taylor Swift, of course, is a card-carrying member, but do you know when she became one? All those YouTubers figured it out immediately: her initiation took place very publicly, at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, when Kanye West famously interrupted Swift onstage to gripe and moan about Beyonce for some reason.

See, long story short, Illuminati members must engage in a "public humiliation ritual" to complete their initiation, and West, who of course was already a member at the time, helped his buddy Taylor out by playing a prominent part in said ritual. What about their public spat in 2016, though? The one in which Swift supposedly took issue with West referring to her as a "b****" in that one song, while West said she gave him permission? Oh, that was a "psy op" to get impressionable kids to believe in the authenticity of such staged situations. Of course.

There is a secret lost Taylor Swift album

So, 2016 was a pretty tough year for Taylor Swift; that's when, between the relationship-shaming, the Kim-and-Kanye bullying, and the overall super-intense levels of public scrutiny, she all but disappeared from the public eye for a bit. Some fans, though, think that it's not just Swift herself that disappeared that year; it was also an entire new album, titled "Karma," that was to be released in 2016 but was scrapped.

For starters, Swift reliably dropped an album every two years until the inexplicable three-year gap between "1989" in 2014 and "Reputation" in 2017. Then, in the video for "Look What You Made Me Do" from the latter release, there's a plane with a broken wing with the call letters TS6 (as in, Taylor Swift's sixth album), and Swift wearing an all-orange outfit — thought to be the lost album's color palette — while trapped in a big cage. The biggest supposed clue, though, came in the video for "The Man," in which there's a wall tagged up with the names of all Swift's albums, with "KARMA" dead center — next to a sign reading, "Missing, If Found Return to Taylor Swift." Swift herself gave the theory a boost during a Vogue interview, during which she said that her biggest life lesson was that "Karma is real" — and in her video announcement of the tracklist for her 2022 album "Midnights," she cackled for several minutes over the title of track eleven ... "Karma."

She heartlessly trolled Kanye with an album release date

It's safe to say that over the years, Taylor Swift and Kanye West have developed the type of relationship for which the term "frenemy" was invented. They appear to have mutual respect for each other, and neither has publicly super-dissed the other, but you just get the feeling that there's some bad blood there. The blood would have to be really bad, though, for one particular theory to be true: that Swift planned the release date of "Reputation," her first post-Kanye-spat album, specifically to get under the skin of the weirdo-slash-rapper.

In August 2017, Swift announced on social media that "Reputation" would drop on November 10 of that year — a date which internet super-sleuths quickly recognized as the 10th anniversary of the death of Kanye's mother, Donda West. What a cold-blooded move, right? That is, unless you realize that major recording artists like Swift cannot unilaterally make these kinds of choices. Swift's label, Universal Music Group, quickly deployed an army of anonymous insiders to debunk the theory. "It is standard practice that releases come out on Fridays and we locked in this release date based on other Universal Music Group releases," one such insider told Complex. "There is no correlation."

She had a secret 4Chan account

In the early teens, a user on 4chan — the image-based message board where all the users are anonymous, and there is a conspiracy theory and usually some racism lurking around every corner — invited members of one board to ask them questions, saying that they were an "entertainer" and "one of the 50 most famous people on the planet." Most users probably figured this person was full of crap, while others may have speculated as to who it could be — while yet others already knew. It was (wait for it) none other than that treacherous scamp Taylor Swift, whom many 4chan users were already convinced was a regular on the boards.

Now, while this is almost certainly not true, there are a few interesting pieces of evidence. Two of the most compelling: Immediately after a user on the /b/ board asked its denizens to name their cat, Swift took to social media to introduce her new cat Meredith, which was the winning name. Then, there was the 4chan user who posted, "Nothing quite like a freezing cold, wintery beach," right before Swift posted pretty much the exact same thing on X (then known as Twitter). 4chan's founder, Christopher Poole (also known as moot), took to his own boards to debunk this notion, but users were unsurprisingly not convinced. Wrote one, "Taylor Swift pays moot to say she isn't on /b/ so she can remain anonymous." Obviously.

Her father bought her career

There's no question that Taylor's Swift's father, Scott Swift, was not exactly in the poorhouse even before his daughter became a megastar. A stockbroker and Merrill Lynch financial advisor who raised Taylor on an 11-acre tree farm, Scott famously, and wisely, moved his family to Nashville so Taylor could pursue her musical dreams; he also purchased a stake in Big Machine Records, her first label. He also — if certain conspiracy-minded folks are to be believed — basically bought Taylor a career, by purchasing 100,000 copies of her first single to make it seem more popular than it really was.

The theory began getting some legs when it was posted on Reddit by a user who cited it as if it were a known fact, which it is not. Some tellings of the tale suggest that it was actually Tay-Tay's first, self-titled album that Scott Swift bought a truckload of copies of; no tellings offer anything remotely resembling proof that he ever did any such thing.

Taylor Swift is dead, long live Taylor Swift

Roundabout 2017, Taylor Swift became the latest in a long line of celebrities to become the focus of a very specific theory: that the musician (it's always musicians for some reason) everyone knows and loves is no more, because they were tragically killed, their death hidden from the public. They were then cloned by the Illuminati, because why own and operate massive, secret clone farms if you're not going to use them?

This theory really blasted off with the release announcement for "Reputation," which heavily featured... a snake. (If you don't know the connection between snakes and clones, well ... you're not alone.) Then, there's the single "Look What You Made Me Do" and its video, which is not really about Swift's desire for agency over her image and career and her disdain for those who seek to control her, but about the fact that she's a clone now. Proponents of the theory went so far as to stage elaborate public tributes like the mural pictured above, which might seem silly but relatively harmless to us, but it probably hits different if you are Taylor Swift. Of course, the New Taylor Swift seems to let these kinds of things roll off her back.