Taylor Swift surprised her fans by flooding their Instagram accounts with comments and compliments.

The 27-year-old star used to regularly engage with fans online, but exiled herself from social media earlier this year (17).

Since then the star's posts to her 104 million followers have been largely restricted to official announcements about her music.

However, over the weekend (07-08Oct17), the star began commenting on unsuspecting fans' Instagram live stream videos to praise them and offer virtual hugs.

The Bad Blood singer told one fan, "You look beautiful today!". She messaged another with the words, "You look beautiful babe, I miss you. It's weird not to be able to hug you right now!!!!!!!"

Instagram allows users to broadcast live to their followers on the social media platform, and Taylor used the service to peer into her fans' lives.

"These Instagram live things are so much fun, I feel like I've discovered a new world," she wrote about the experience.

The star was known for her responsiveness on social media, and last year (16) even surprised one fan by turning up to their wedding. Recently though she has taken a more cautious approach after several media controversies.

The singer appeared to address several of her spats with other celebrities, including Kim Kardashian and Katy Perry, in the video for her new single Look What You Made Me Do, the first single from her upcoming album Reputation, her first in three years, which is released on 10 November (17).

Taylor will also return to performing later this year, as on Sunday (08Oct17), she announced two festival gigs in San Jose, California and Chicago Illinois.

The star only performed once last year (16), at the Circuit of The Americas race track in Austin, Texas.

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