Taylor Swift and Nicki Minaj have become embroiled in a heated Twitter exchange over race and sexism after the rapper criticized MTV network bosses for snubbing her work at this year's (15) MTV Video Music Awards.
The nominations for the annual music prizegiving were announced on Tuesday (21Jul15), and although the Superbass hitmaker scored three nods, she questioned why she wasn't recognized in the Video of the Year category and why her promo with Beyonce didn't even get a mention.
Minaj took to Twitter and wrote, "Hey guys @MTV thank you for my nominations. Did (Beyonce video) Feeling Myself miss the deadline..."
But it was her comments about the Video of the Year snub that prompted a reaction from Swift, who led all nominees with nine and landed a best video nod for Bad Blood.
Anaconda was nominated for Best Female Video and Best Hip-Hop Video, but not the top prize, leading Minaj to snarl, "If I was a different 'kind' of artist, Anaconda would be nominated for best choreo (choreography) and vid of the year as well... When the 'other' girls drop a video that breaks records and impacts culture they get that nomination... If your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you will be nominated for vid of the year."
Swift decided to respond to Minaj's tweets, and wrote, "I've done nothing but love & support you. It's unlike you to pit women against each other. Maybe one of the men took your slot..."
Minaj was confused by her response, since the goal of her Twitter rant was to point out that "Black women influence pop culture so much but are rarely rewarded for it", and she fired back, "Huh? U must not be reading my tweets. Didn't say a word about u. I love u just as much. But u should speak on this... I'm still confused as to why u just tweeted me when I made it abundantly clear..."
Minaj then shared a link to an article headlined "Taylor Swift blasts Nicki Minaj for #VMAs jab" and added the caption, "(DJ) Ryan (Seacrest) posted a headline of Taylor saying she loves & supports me. But not me saying the same to her. Lol (laugh out loud). Their headline says I took a 'jab'?
"Taylor took her music off spotify and was applauded. We launched (streaming site) Tidal & were dragged (ridiculed)."
She continued to retweet posts of support from her fans, with one writing, "nicki was making valid points about the history of racism in the music industry, taylor should be standing by her not making it about her", and another adding, "I'm baffled as to WHY @taylorswift13 felt the need to come at @NickiMinaj for speaking on behalf of unsung black female entertainers."
Meanwhile, Swift attempted to ease the tension by playing nice with Minaj, and wrote back, "If I win, please come up with me!! You're invited to any stage I'm ever on."
Minaj has yet to respond to Swift's offer.
The awards ceremony will take place in Los Angeles next month (Aug15).