The #FreeBritney Movement Gains Traction

Adam Bear, Staff Writer

In recent years, the #FreeBritney movement has gained traction, particularly on social media. The movement aims to end pop star Britney Spears’ conservatorship, which she was placed under in 2008 after suffering several mental breakdowns. 

A conservatorship is a legal guardianship where representatives are appointed to make financial and personal decisions for a person if a court rules that the person is not fit to make their own decisions. Spears’ financial assets and her career and estate negotiations are managed by her father, Jamie Spears.

The arrangement has always been controversial among Spears’ fans, as they believe it is used to exploit Spears. Since the start of her conservatorship, Spears has released four albums, performed for four years in a $140 million performance residency in Las Vegas, and launched fashion and fragrance products. Those who have rallied behind the #FreeBritney movement — which includes celebrities like Miley Cyrus and Rose McGowan — believe that Spears is making money for her conservators while being deprived of her rights, such as spending her own money. 

Many fans also believe that Spears’ strange behavior on social media is a sign that she needs help, but these claims are unproven. Spears having a conservator is highly irregular, as that arrangement is usually reserved for people in a coma or with a severe mental illness. 

The #FreeBritney movement has been highlighted recently with the release of the film, Framing Britney Spears, which was created by The New York Times and released on Hulu. The film took a deep dive into Spears’ situation, and caused many people to join the discourse about Spears and the #FreeBritney movement. Additionally, a petition wanting to grant Spears the right to an attorney has received over 333,000 signatures.