Last week, following the release of her sixth album, Reputation, we stated: "Taylor Swift Is Too Big To Fail." It was a sentiment that came from the fact that it didn't matter that Swift was releasing her most critically unpopular album in years—her profile is simply too large, her reach too far, for her to fail commercially.
We were, to put it mildly, correct. Nielsen Music (via Billboard) today has it that Reputation officially sold 1.216 million copies worldwide in its first week, making it the tenth largest sales week since Nielsen began tracking sales in 1991, and Taylor Swift's fourth million selling week. She is the first artist to ever have four million selling weeks. Not bad for the person who released "Look What You Made Me Do" not as a joke.
It's not necessarily surprising. Swift has not yet streamed Reputation on Apple Music, Spotify, or any large streaming site, thus buying or illegally downloading it (not that we condone that) are still the only way you can get your hands on it. Secondly, there were a lot of incentives to buy the record: certain pre-order packages guaranteed fans early access to concert tickets, and others meant you got a special Reputation magazine (OK, Frank Ocean!). It's smart if sales are your priority, which, obviously, they were. It seems pointless to clarify considering these huge numbers, but: Reputation—widely considered Swift's patchiest album perhaps ever—is the biggest-selling record of 2017. She can do whatever she likes.
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