Taylor Swift Copyright Suit for the Song ‘Shake IT Off’ Dismissed

On Monday, court filings revealed that two songwriters had abandoned their case against Taylor Swift, in which they had claimed that Swift had pirated their lyrics for her 2014 No. 1 single, Shake It Off. Sean Hall and Nathan Butler have also informed the federal court in Los Angeles that the lawsuit won’t be refilled and that they have dismissed the case. The case was previously scheduled to go to prosecution in January of 2023.

Swift and the songwriters’ lawyers submitted joint court documents on Monday, but they did not indicate whether or not they had reached a settlement. Requests for clarification from both sides’ representatives were greeted with silence.

Taylor Swift

The Copyright Case

The singer used a line, “The players gonna play, play, play, play, play, and the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate.” In her song ‘Shake It Off.’ But according to Sean Hall & Nathan Butler, “Playas, they gonna play, and haters, they gonna hate” was a line from their song Playas Gon’ Play. The R&B trio 3LW released the song in their 2000 album, and it subsequently charted on the Billboard Hot 100 and MTV’s Total Request Live. Although, the court rejected the lawsuit in 2018, saying the lyrics were “too mundane” to be reproduced, but an appeals panel brought it back in 2021. Hall and Butler said the similarities in the lyrics were not coincidental. They sought damages of an unknown sum.

Taylor Swift Reaction to the Case

In August, Swift testified in court that she was unaware of 3LW’s song at the time she wrote Shake It Off.  When asked about it further, Taylor Swift said the phrase “players gonna play” and “haters gonna hate” is a commonly used phrase to convey the concept of ‘one can or should shrug off adversity. ’She said that she wrote the song “Shake It Off” to help people “feel better about harsh criticism via music, dancing, and the personal freedom allowing one to simply shake it off.”

Taylor Swift also said that she had never heard the 3LW song when it was first released since her parents had forbidden her from watching MTV’s Total Request Live when she was a little kid (the 3LW hit had first entered the charts when she was 10). Andrea Swift, Taylor’s mother, provided a declaration as well, indicating that she “seriously supervised both the television Swift watched and the music she heard.”

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