‘White history month’: Taylor Swift Grammys speech edited by trolls in new deepfake

Taylor Swift trolls have used deepfake technology to have the superstar deliver a white supremacist message at the Grammys.

On Monday, the 34-year-old singer became the first artist in history to win Album of the Year four times, taking home the prestigious award for her 2022 album Midnights, having previously won for Fearless, 1989 and folklore.

An emotional Swift accepted the award while also making the bombshell announcement that her new album, Tortured Poets Department, will arrive on April 19.

But a crude deepfake going viral on social media has changed the audio of Swift’s speech to a racial message.

“What an absolute honour beyond dreams to have been named the first national Snow Queen of White History Month,” the voice says, in a jab at Black History Month which is observed during February in the US.

“I will use this role and this award for us all to make white history together. There is nothing racist about white history month. Nothing racist at all. It isn’t about hate, it’s about love. Love as pure as the white driven snow of Odin’s palace.”

One account that shared the video wrote, “I don’t believe that Taylor said this in her Grammys acceptance speech. Unreal!”

“BREAKING: Taylor Swift accepts her historic award as First Snow Queen of White History Month! Wow!” wrote right-wing influencer Jack Posobiec, who has recently been promoting conspiracy theories about Swift, her relationship with NFL player Travis Kelce, the Super Bowl and the 2024 election.

Swift has previously been targeted with fake sexually explicit images. After the internet was flooded with the deepfake pornography last month, X temporarily banned searches for star’s name.

One image of Swift shared on X was viewed 47 million times before the account was suspended, The New York Times reported. The White House even weighed in, calling the trend “alarming”.

X lifted the ban on Taylor Swift searches last week but said it would “continue to be vigilant for any attempt to spread this content and will remove it if we find it”.

Communications Minister Michelle Rowland told The Daily Telegraph on Monday that Australia was looking to step up penalties for online platforms that ignore take-down orders for non-consensual intimate images, including AI deepfakes.

Ms Rowland said celebrities were not the only victims of the “deeply distressing” crime. “The Taylor Swift incident really heightened awareness, but you don’t need to be a celebrity for this to happen,” she said.

“All Australians should know … if they have intimate images shared of them, they have opportunities for redress.”