Judge Dismissed Lawsuit Against Taylor Swift In Most Awesome Way Possible


Taylor-Swift-Bad-Blood-Music-Video-GIFsA few weeks ago, it was brought to our attention that an obscure jazz artist named Jesse Braham (stage name Jesse Graham) was suing THE Taylor Swift for a cool $42 million, claiming that his song 2013 entitled “Haters Gonna Hate” had been shamelessly ripped off by Swift…

B/Graham claimed that “92% of the lyrics of ‘Shake It Off’ came from his song, that his ‘song phrase string is used over 70+ times,’ and that Taylor Swift would not have written ‘Shake It Off’ had he not written ‘Haters gone hate.’”

At the same time, we all thought of that 2000 3LW song. (A true modern classic, that song.)

So clearly, no one thought this lawsuit had a chance. And it looks like even the judge was amused by how ridiculous the lawsuit was, judging (pun) by the way she dismissed the case in court.

Judge Gail J. Standish began normally, dismissing the lawsuit on the basis that there were too few similarities between the two songs to prove Swift had stolen from B/Graham, and that there was overwhelming evidence that both phrases were used long before B/Graham wrote his song in 2013. (Again, 3LW!)

The court detects only two [and maybe three] similarities between “Haters Gone Hate” and “Shake It Off”…The songs appear to have different melodies and belong to different musical genres. And, even in the identified potential similarities, “Shake It Off’ uses a rhetorical repetition following the phrases.

The court has identified internet sources which, if submitted as admissible evidence, may demonstrate that the lyrics “Haters gone hate” and “Players gone play” are not original components of Braham’s 2013 work:

-“Playas Gon’ Play,” 3LW [2000]

– “Haters Gonna Hate” entry on Urban Dictionary, reflecting use and
definition of the phrase since at least August 2010.

But Standish didn’t stop there. She decided to have a little fun with what was clearly a bogus lawsuit for media attention, and decided to quote T. Swift. She used Swift’s own lyrics to pronounce that the case was baseless. And it’s awesome:

At present, the court is not saying that Braham can never, ever, ever get his case back in court. But, for now, we have got problems, and the court is not sure Braham can solve them. As currently drafted, the complaint has a blank space—one that requires Braham to do more than write his name. And, upon consideration of the court’s explanation in Part II, Braham may discover that mere pleading BandAids will not fix the bullet holes in his case. At least for the moment, defendants have shaken off this lawsuit.


Lisa Lo Paro
Lisa is a freelance writer and bibliophile living on the outskirts of New York City. She likes 2 a.m. with a good book, takes cream in her coffee and heavily filters her photos. Check out her blog The Most Happy, her Instagram, and Twitter.

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