UPDATE 12:49 AM: Taylor has responded (see at bottom).
Forget Hiddleswift truthers, forget Calvin Harris, even forget Katy Perry: the original Taylor Swift beef, the eternal cultural wound left over from Kanye West interrupting her at the Grammys, has just opened anew. It's Kim Kardashian West, however, who started this round with a bang: a series of Snapchat videos of Kanye West on the phone with Swift discussing the lyrics to his then-upcoming single, "Famous."
In celebrity feud land, it's extremely rare for someone to drop hard video proof of their side of the argument, but Kardashian's video contradicts much of Swift's public response to the song and the controversy that erupted over Kanye's lyrics:
For all my Southside niggas that know me best
I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex
Why? I made that bitch famous (God damn)
I made that bitch famous
When Kanye received an inevitable backlash, he defended himself in a Twitter rant. West said he and Taylor had talked over the lyrics, and that she had even tweaked them with him.
Swift's representatives strongly and completely denied this, going as far as to say that their only conversation was about promoting the track, but also that Taylor had criticized it before release:
"Kanye did not call for approval, but to ask Taylor to release his single ‘Famous’ on her Twitter account. She declined and cautioned him about releasing a song with such a strong misogynistic message. Taylor was never made aware of the actual lyric, ‘I made that bitch famous.’ "
More famously, Taylor said in a speech at the Grammys that people would always try to "undercut your success, or take credit," if you're a young woman. "Take credit" in particular seemed directed at West, and was widely interpreted as such.
Now Kim Kardashian West enters the picture. This entire time, apparently, Kim has has video of the conversation between her husband and Swift—a conversation that was apparently overheard by producer Rick Rubin and other "respected people in the industry," according to Kim's recent interview with GQ. Kim also claimed that, at the time, Taylor had a much different attitude, saying:
When I get on the Grammy red carpet, all the media is going to think that I’m so against this, and I’ll just laugh and say, ‘The joke’s on you, guys. I was in on it the whole time.
That quote, by the way, seems to be verified by the video up top. But then, of course, Swift didn't do that at the Grammys. In her GQ interview, Kardashian West revealed that she had video proof and that Swift's lawyers had contacted her and Kanye to try and destroy it. When GQ tried to verify Kim's claim, Swift's lawyers responded with this:
Taylor does not hold anything against Kim Kardashian as she recognizes the pressure Kim must be under and that she is only repeating what she has been told by Kanye West. However, that does not change the fact that much of what Kim is saying is incorrect. Kanye West and Taylor only spoke once on the phone while she was on vacation with her family in January of 2016 and they have never spoken since. Taylor has never denied that conversation took place. It was on that phone call that Kanye West also asked her to release the song on her Twitter account, which she declined to do. Kanye West never told Taylor he was going to use the term ‘that bitch’ in referencing her. A song cannot be approved if it was never heard. Kanye West never played the song for Taylor Swift. Taylor heard it for the first time when everyone else did and was humiliated. Kim Kardashian's claim that Taylor and her team were aware of being recorded is not true, and Taylor cannot understand why Kanye West, and now Kim Kardashian, will not just leave her alone.
Usually one to simply outlive her critics through a glacial determination to stay famous, Kim Kardashian this time used that ruthless patience to wait until the right time to drop the call video. That time being long after the Grammys speech, well after the GQ interview, immediately after an episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians in which she discusses the Grammys diss, and several hours after this brutal subtweet.
TL;DR - Don't mess with someone who has survived being hated as much as Kim Kardashian, even if you know you can take Kanye West. This is an A-list battle royale, and although Taylor Swift may have legions of fans (and legions of Kardashian/Kanye haters to draw from), this time Kim has the receipts.
UPDATE: Swift has responded on Twitter, claiming that this contradicts nothing and that her beef focuses on the words "that bitch," which she says Kanye never revealed to her.