9th Circuit Revives Ridiculous 'Shake It Off' Copyright Lawsuit, Because The 9th Circuit Loves To Mess Up Copyright Law
Art Law

9th Circuit Revives Ridiculous ‘Shake It Off’ Copyright Lawsuit, Because The 9th Circuit Loves To Mess Up Copyright Law

from the playas-gonna-play dept Why is the 9th Circuit so horrendously bad at copyright law? This question comes up way too often. Last year we wrote about a very good and (and at the time, we thought) very easy and obvious district court dismissal of a lawsuit against Taylor Swift . The issue was Taylor Swift’s hit song "Shake It Off" which includes in the lyrics the lines "playas gonna play" and "haters gonna hate." She was sued by Sean Hall who had a song call "Playas Gon’ Play" that has the lyrics "Playas, they gonna play / And haters, they gonna hate." The district court not only dismissed the case as ridiculous, but the judge threatened Section 11 sanctions on Hall’s lawyers for bringing such a ridiculous case as it was beyond obvious that such short snippets (used slightly differently) weren’t nearly enough to get a copyright alone — and since that’s the only similarity, the case got tossed. In sum, the lyrics at issue – the only thing that Plaintiffs allege Defendants copied – are too brief, unoriginal, and uncreative to warrant protection under the Copyright Act. But, as first noted by the Hollywood Reporter, the 9th […]

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