“’Okay, so they got pictures of us in our bikinis.’ I don’t want them to make, like, $100,000 for a bikini shot.” Taylor Swift revealed her rationale for posting a photo of herself, bikini clad, on her Instagram in January. Swift’s post exposed her entire abdomen, previously kept expertly hidden and severely mysterious. Instead of allowing the ownership of her coveted belly button photo to be in the hands of the paparazzi, she took the reigns and uploaded her own photo to her social media account. An account she controls.
Taylor is a defining character in the global culture at this moment in time. She has a pull, she has a say, people hang onto her every word. From that symbolic post on Instagram, to her affiliation with Jay Z’s music platform, Tidal, which focuses on artist ownership, she has made a stand for being in control of her reputation.
Looking into the future we see people like Taylor defining our cultural shift. A shift that encompasses many realms of life, society, art, and technology. A shift toward a new type of community-based cultural phenomenon related to ownership, reputation, and defining oneself.
We will take a look at people and movements we believe are providing a unique perspective. There are things shifting all around us. To tie a thread between many of them is possible in the context of the culture of the future.