Instructed to censor a lyric during her 20-second rap, the singer instead raised her middle finger to the camera. America went apoplectic.
'I literally had to make out of there like a diamond robber,' she says of the aftermath. 'There was so much press. I was like, 'I can't believe this, it's insane.''
The National Football League is now attempting to sue MIA for $1.5 million (£900,000), saying the singer broke a pre-show agreement to maintain its 'reputation for wholesomeness'.
But she's not one to back away from a fight, issuing a statement on YouTube that branded the legal action 'ridiculous'.
In the video, she protests that if you freeze-frame 'the precise moment in question' there are 10 to 15 cheerleaders behind her, all of them under 16.
'They're all wearing cheerleader outfits, hips thrusted in the air, legs wide open, in this very sexually provocative position,' she says.
'Is my finger offensive, or is the underage black girl with her legs wide open more offensive to the family audience? That's basically what it comes down to. It's a massive waste of time, a massive waste of money.'
Her argument, although eloquently made, received little press attention.
From BBC News