"I just think we live in a time with toxic division and people thinking that social media is the appropriate place to air out on each other and not have conversations," Braun said in a Q&A on Thursday

By Darlene Aderoju
November 21, 2019 09:35 PM
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Scooter Braun is speaking out amid the public feud between Taylor Swift himself and her former label, Big Machine Label Group.

During the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce State of the Entertainment Industry Conference on Thursday, the record executive, 38, publically spoke out about his dispute with the pop star, for the first time.

While Scooter and Swift, 29, have been at loggerheads since he purchased BMLG and her back catalog earlier this year, their issues once again surfaced with a vengeance last week after the singer shared a message on Tumblr accusing Braun and the CEO of BMLG, Scott Borchetta, of blocking her from performing her prior hits at the AMAs on Sunday.

“I haven’t talked about this in six months, not once,” Braun said in a Q&A moderated by Variety‘s Shirley Halperin. “I haven’t made a statement about it and that’s hard, because when you have a lot of things being said and a lot of different opinions — yet the principals haven’t had a chance to speak to each other — there’s a lot of confusion. I think that I’m not gonna go into details here because it’s just not my style.”

“I just think we live in a time with toxic division and people thinking that social media is the appropriate place to air out on each other and not have conversations,” Braun continued.

“I don’t like politicians doing it, I don’t like anybody doing it, and if that means that I gotta be the bad guy longer, I’ll be the bad guy longer,” he added. “But I’m not gonna participate.”

Taylor Swift, Scooter Braun
Taylor Swift, Scooter Braun
| Credit: Taylor Hill/FilmMagic; Rob Latour/Shutterstock

The record executive, who declined to mention Swift by name, went on to say that the ideal solution would be to discuss the issue privately.

“What I’ll say is, people need to communicate and when people are able to communicate I think they work things out,” he continued. “I think a lot of times things are miscommunicated, but I believe that people are fundamentally good.”

“I also think there are a lot of real problems in the world, and I think that these problems that are being discussed can be discussed behind closed doors and figured out pretty easily. It’s something I’ve been wanting to do for six months and it’s hard because I can handle it pretty easily.”

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Braun shared a photo on Twitter on Tuesday that read “Kindness is the only response” while captioning the post, “Words to live by.” The message seemed to be in reference to the situation with Swift, but once again did not reference her directly.

In her Tumblr post shared last Thursday, the Grammy-winner wrote, “Scott Borchetta and Scooter Braun have now said that I’m not allowed to perform my old songs on television because they claim that would be re-recording my music before I’m allowed to next year.”

She went on to claim that she has been working with Netflix on a documentary about her “life for the past few years,” but that Braun — who purchased BMLG from Borchetta for $300 million earlier this year — has “declined the use of my older music or performance footage for this project.”

Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift
| Credit: Valheria Rocha

Swift has since been cleared to perform her older hits at the AMAs this weekend, where she will be honored with the artist of the decade award.

In a statement shared with PEOPLE on Monday, BMLG announced that they have “come to terms on a licensing agreement that approves their artists’ performances to stream post-show and for re-broadcast on mutually approved platforms. This includes the upcoming American Music Awards performances.”