‘Swifties’ flock to Taylor Swift’s QR code in River North – Daily Northwestern

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‘Swifties’ flock to Taylor Swift’s QR code in River North – Daily Northwestern

Anything Taylor Swift touches gets a lot of attention, and her QR code in River North is no exception. Fans gathered outside 25 W. Grand Ave. Wednesday evening to take photos in front of the large QR code on the side of a building and scan it to reveal its secret message.

The QR code appeared in Chicago Monday afternoon and is one of several puzzle pieces placed around the world in anticipation of Swift’s new album, “THE TORTURED POETS DEPARTMENT,” which will be released Friday. The QR code itself is made up of overlapping “TTPD” and “13” text in a typewriter-style font.

Like Taylor Swift, the QR code refers to a puzzle. The singer-songwriter is known for leaving “Easter eggs” to promote her music to her fans. Originally, the link led to an error message, but on Wednesday evening, fans were directed to a YouTube Short of a typewriter typing the letter “T.”

Fans have since deduced that single-letter clues across the world spell out “For A Fortnight,” and Swift announced that a music video for “Fortnight (feat. Post Malone)” would be released on April 19 at 8 p.m. EST .

Jane Kleeb, chairwoman of the Nebraska Democratic Party and a self-identified “50-plus Swifttie,” visited the QR code during a work trip to Chicago. Kleeb said she expects the album to focus on a new chapter in Swift’s life.

“I actually think it’s less about a breakup and more about finding who she is and reclaiming her place as a woman,” Kleeb said.

Many fans, including Kleeb, predicted that the new music would take on a “melancholy” sound.

Chicago resident Ash Rafiq said she also thought the album would embody a dark sound. Like many fans, Rafiq said she expected a breakup album.

“I hope it’s one of his best breakup albums,” Rafiq said. “That’s what I hope because I’d like to have a good cry.”

Rafiq said she thought the QR code and other clues might hint at the April 19 release of a second album, perhaps “Reputation (Taylor’s Version).”

Some fans, like Communication freshman Alex Lopez, said they have big plans for the album’s release. Lopez said he would listen to the album in its entirety with his friend when it was released.

“We won’t talk at all during the songs, and then after each one we’ll do a big debrief,” Lopez said. “I’m so excited.”

Katie Krusinski visited the attraction with her 7-year-old daughter, Scarlett, both dressed in Taylor Swift merchandise.

Krusinski said she raised Scarlett with Swift’s music and appreciated the messages Swift’s songs could teach her daughter.

“I think she sings about a lot of different things — being inclusive, talking about women’s rights,” Krusinski said. “I think she’s a great role model, especially for girls and women growing up.”

Like Krusinski, Kleeb said Swift’s music played a prominent role in his relationship with his daughters, as they were the ones who introduced Kleeb to Swift’s discography.

Kleeb said the fact that people are taking the time to visit and scan the QR code speaks volumes about Swift’s influence and the nature of the fan base she has cultivated.

“What I find amazing is that all these little Easter eggs that she puts out everywhere unite a community and make us think creatively, which is actually what she wants us to do: be creative, forming a sense of community,” Kleeb said. “That’s what we do because we’re Swifties.”

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