Altered photo does not show Taylor Swift fans dangling from stadium roof

Following Taylor Swift's sold-out shows in Singapore, an edited photo was shared in Facebook posts claiming it showed two fans climbing a stadium roof in a desperate bid to catch a glimpse of the star. The original photo actually shows the pair climbing scaffolding at a rapper's concert in Mexico in 2022.

"2 fans of Taylor Swift couldn't afford the ticket, so they climbed on the roof just to watch the concert," says a Tagalog-language Facebook post that shared the picture on March 11.

The image, shared by a page with 6.9 million followers, appears to show two people dangling from the roof of a concert hall.

The post surfaced after the US megastar performed six sold-out shows in Singapore, with fans splashing out on flights and hotels to see their idol on the sole Southeast Asia stop of her Eras World Tour.

Swift-mania reached fever pitch after the 34-year old scooped her fourth Album of the Year prize at the Grammys in February.

Screenshot of false post, taken March 20, 2024

Dozens of other Facebook posts shared the same picture, including here, here and here.

The picture was hyperlinked to online shopping websites selling Swift-related products by non-official accounts. 

Some Facebook users appeared to believe the image genuinely showed a pair of "Swifties" climbing the stadium roof.

"Technically the concert should have stopped. Because they endangered themselves and others," one person commented.

"Wah best views ever," another wrote.

Altered photo 

Reverse image searches and keyword searches on Google found a similar photo published by Mexican news site Periódico AM on January 18, 2022 (archived link). 

The photo shows the same two people in the altered image -- one wearing a white top and the other in red -- but climbing scaffolding, not a stadium roof.

Below is a screenshot comparison of the altered photo (left) and the original photo, with similarities highlighted (right):

Screenshot comparison of the altered photo (left) and the original photo

According to the Periódico AM article, fans of Mexican rapper Santa Fe Klan tried desperately to access the Velaria de la Feria concert hall in Leon, Mexico to watch his show, despite the venue reaching maximum capacity. 

"Things got out of control and people did anything they could to get a place," the photo caption says in Spanish.

The chaos was widely reported in Mexican media, including by Milenio and Excelsior newspapers (archived links here and here). 

The edited photo appears to have surfaced online a few days after the Santa Fe Klan concert.

A Facebook user called "Barquera" posted the fabricated image on January 21, 2022 and wrote in the comments section that he had edited it.

The concert hall in the altered photo (left) matches with geotagged images (right) on Google Maps of Velaria de la Feria in Leon (archived links here and here), as shown below. 

Screenshot comparison of the altered photo (left) and the geotagged image of the venue (right)

Last year, Taylor Swift performed her Eras Tour shows in Mexico but at the Foro Sol stadium in Mexico City (archived link). 

AFP has previously fact-checked misinformation about Swift here

Is there content that you would like AFP to fact-check? Get in touch.

Contact us