People, do not come for Taylor Swift. The pop star has yet again been victorious in court, with a judge dismissing a copyright lawsuit filed against the "End Game" singer by songwriters Sean Hall and Nathan Butler. Hall and Butler alleged that the lyrics for Swift's "Shake It Off" were stolen from their song, "Playas Gon' Play," written for the band 3LW, released in 2000.
Let's compare. Swift's lyrics:
'Cause the players gonna play, play, play, play, play / And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate."
And the lyrics written by Hall and Butler:
"Playas, they gonna play / And haters, they gonna hate."
Yes, they're similar, but there's also a finite number of combinations of words in the English language, especially just six words. Judge Michael Fitzgerald agreed, and while he favoured Swift by dismissing the lawsuit, he couldn't leave without throwing some shade her way.
"By 2001, American popular culture was heavily steeped in the concepts of players, haters and player-haters..." — ah yes, the title of my thesis — "The concept of actors acting in accordance with their essential nature is not at all creative; it is banal," he said, according to The Guardian. "The alleged infringed lyrics are short phrases that lack the modicum of originality and creativity required for copyright protection."
Banal! Lacking the modicum of originality! Sounds like Fitzgerald may have a promising lyricist career ahead, himself.
"This is a ridiculous claim and nothing more than a money grab," Swift's lawyers previously said about the case. "The law is simple and clear. They do not have a case."
Luckily the judge agreed — just not for the reason they probably hoped.
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