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Meet the Journalist Who Got Hired to Cover Taylor Swift Full Time

Meet the Journalist Who Got Hired to Cover Taylor Swift Full Time

Meet the Journalist Who Got Hired to Cover Taylor Swift Full Time
Shutterstock/Bryan West

The position isn't any different than being a sports journalist, really.

If you’ve ever wanted to be the go-to journalist reporting on all things Taylor Swift, you're just out of luck, because 35-year-old Bryan West from Arizona has officially snatched that title off the market!

Gannett, the largest newspaper chain in the United States, recently ruffled some feathers after it posted a job listing for a full-time journalist position to report exclusively on Taylor Swift-related news for USA Today.

The announcement of this role sparked widespread debate within the media industry, with some questioning whether dedicating a reporter solely to Taylor Swift (and another to Beyoncé) was a smart move or an overindulgence.

West, however, defended his position in a recent interview with Variety, saying, “I would say this position’s no different than being a sports journalist who’s a fan of the home team.” Being a Swiftie himself, he said, “I think that’s the fun of the job is that, yeah, you can talk Easter eggs, but it really is more of the seriousness, like the impact she has on society and business and music.”

Michael Anastasi, editor and vice president of local news for The Tennessean (the newsroom where West's position will be based) explained the company genuinely sought a qualified journalist for the role, even though they received a wide range of applicants. In choosing West, he said they felt they “ended up with someone who I think has the great balance between being a veteran journalist who has serious news chops and someone who understands everything about Taylor’s world and the universe he’s stepping into.”

West's responsibilities go beyond traditional reporting, as he'll also engage with Swift's fanbase, produce video content, and attend events like tour stops and award shows. While some argue that this position is purely for fanboys and fangirls, Gannett sees it as part of their “transformational strategy” to create new jobs while adapting to the changing media landscape.

Despite concerns about the company's allocation of resources and the backlash the job posting initially received, Gannett remains committed to its growth strategy and believes that this unique position will resonate with fans and provide a fresh perspective on entertainment. West, who has met Swift in the past, is enthusiastic about covering her career, including the anticipated release of the re-recorded “Taylor's Version” of her 2017 album Reputation.

As of now, he is not guaranteed to get any interviews with Swift for any coverage.

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