Who is Taylor Swift's 'Better than Revenge' song about?

Who is Taylor Swift's 'Better than Revenge' song about?
Taylor Swift Changes Controversial 'Better Than Revenge' Lyrics

Taylor Swift’s third album Speak Now was re-released today as Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) as the multi-award winning artist continues to re-record her catalogue.

The new version featured all 14 songs on the original record, as well as six songs ‘from the vault’, which means that Swift wrote them for the album but they didn’t make the cut initially. The album also features artists Fall Out Boy and Hayley Williams from Paramore.

When listening to the album fans noticed that Swift had changed a lyric in one of her hit songs.

'Better Than Revenge' is about Swift desiring to get revenge on a romantic rival.

The lyric from the original album released in 2010 goes “she’s better known for the things that she does on the mattress.” Which some claimed to be misogynistic and “slutshaming”. So for 'Better Than Revenge (Taylor’s Version)', Swift changed the line to: “he was a moth to flame, she was holding the matches.”

Sign up to our free Indy100 weekly newsletter

Many praised the change, saying it highlighted Swift’s growth, who was 21 when Speak Now was originally released, whilst some fans mourned the original lyric saying it’s exactly what an 18-year-old would write and the authenticity of it has been damaged.

However, the lyric change has led many to re discuss who the song was about in the first place.

Whilst it has never been confirmed, it is believed that the song is about Joe Jonas, Swift’s ex, and Camilla Belle, the woman Jonas dated after he broke up with Taylor back in 2008. Belle is an actress and model.

In fact, Belle’s niece made a TikTok about the song, explaining that Belle is her dad’s half-sister and that “I love that song, even though it’s about my aunt.” Many viewers left comments asking what Belle thought about the now-changed lyric, but there’s currently been no response.


Replying to @Carolina theres literally not a lot to say about this haha

In 2014, Swift spoke to The Guardianabout the lyric saying the she was only 18 when she wrote the song: “That’s the age you are when you think someone can actually take your boyfriend. Then you grow up and realise no one takes someone form you if they don’t want to leave.”

Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.

The Conversation (0)