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News February 14, 2018

Taylor Swift has dodged her ‘Shake It Off’ copyright lawsuit

Taylor Swift has dodged her ‘Shake It Off’ copyright lawsuit

The copyright lawsuit filed against Taylor Swift claiming the lyrics to her 2014 track ‘Shake It Off’ infringed on a 2001 hit by American girl group 3lw has been dismissed by the federal court of California.

Sean Hall and Nathan Butler, the songwriters responsible for the 3lw track ‘Playas Gon’ Play’ claimed there were similarities between the lyrics that warranted their ability to sue Swift.

The lyrics to the 3lw track follow, “Playas, they gonna play/ And haters, they gonna hate.”  whilst Swifts chorus goes “Cause the players gonna play, play, play, play, play/ And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate.”

As originally reported by The Hollywood Reporter, US District Judge Michael Fitzgerald has now granted Swift’s the ability to dismiss the lawsuit. The plaintiffs will be able to amend their complaint if they can cite more similarities by February 26.

“The lynchpin of this entire case is thus whether or not the lyrics ‘Playas, they gonna play / And haters, they gonna hate’ are eligible for protection under the Copyright Act,” Fitzgerald writes.

The court report details that there was no dispute whether Hall and Butler owned their lyrics or that Swift’s team had access to the song.

“[B]y 2001, American popular culture was heavily steeped in the concepts of players, haters, and player haters. … The concept of actors acting in accordance with their essential nature is not at all creative; it is banal.”

“The allegedly infringed lyrics are short phrases that lack the modicum of originality and creativity required for copyright protection,” adds Fitzgerald.

This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.


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