LOS ANGELES — Justin Bieber took to social media Sunday to defend his longtime manager Scooter Braun after Taylor Swift released a statement criticizing him for "manipulative bullying." Her statement was in response to Braun's recent acquisition of Big Machine Records, which holds the rights to Swift's first six albums, all of which are multiplatinum.
On Sunday, Swift posted a lengthy Tumblr post decrying Braun's purchase, calling the deal her "worst case scenario" and saying she felt "sad and gross out."
After of a decade with Big Machine Records, which owns the master recordings of all her previous work, Swift signed to Republic Records in late 2018, which will release for forthcoming album "Lover." One of the main reasons Swift gave for explaining the split was the ability to own her music.
“For years I asked, pleaded for a chance to own my work," Swift wrote. "Instead I was given an opportunity to sign back up to Big Machine Records and ‘earn’ one album back at a time, one for every new one I turned in."
Swift also accused Braun and his clients, like Bieber, of bullying.
“Like when Kim Kardashian orchestrated an illegally recorded snippet of a phone call to be leaked and then Scooter got his two clients together to bully me online about it," she said.
In response to Swift, Bieber started off by apologizing for an earlier Instagram post that Swift felt was an example of Braun's "bullying," writing on Instagram, "Scooter has had your back since the days you graciously let me open up for you! As the years have passed we haven't crossed paths and gotten to communicate our differences, hurts or frustrations. So for you to take it to social media and get people to hate on scooter isn't fair. What were you trying to accomplish by posting that blog? Seems to me like it was to get sympathy u also knew that in posting that your fans would go and bully scooter.
Bieber also attempted to open direct lines of communication, while also criticizing Swift for "defacing" Braun's character.
"Anyway, One thing i know is both scooter and i love you. I feel like the only way to resolve conflict is through communication."
Braun's wife, Yael Cohen Braun, also came to his defense on Instagram, writing "I have never been one for the public airing of laundry, but when you attack my husband... here we go."
Yael Braun criticized Taylor's depiction of the conflict, emphasizing that Swift was given fair notice of the deal between her husband's Ithaca Holdings and Big Machine Records as well as the opportunity to purchase her own masters.
"Interesting that the man you're so 'grossed out' by believed in you more than you believe in yourself," she wrote. "And girl, who are you to talk about bullying? The world has watched you collect and drop friends like wilted flowers. MY husband is anything but a bully."
As the Braun army fortified, more supporters came out on social media to defend the manager, including SB Projects partner Allison Kaye and Bieber attorney Aaron Rosenberg.