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Witty Judge Uses Taylor Swift Lyrics To Dismiss 'Shake It Off' Copyright Lawsuit

The Huffington Post The Huffington Post 12/11/2015 Julia Brucculieri
ATHENA IMAGE © ChinaFotoPress via Getty Images ATHENA IMAGE

Last week, a man named Jesse Braham (stage name Jesse Graham) tried to sue Taylor Swift for a whopping $42 million. He claimed that her hit "Shake It Off" uses lyrics from his song, "Haters Gone Hate." (Clearly, he'd been living under a rock and hadn't heard any hip-hop/R&B songs from the past 30 years. See: 3Lw's "Playas Gon' Play," 504 Boyz's "Haters Gon' Hate.") 

On Tuesday, Judge Gail Standish of the U.S. Central District Court in California dismissed the lawsuit in the most appropriate way -- by quoting Swift's lyrics. 


Court documents (obtained by Jezebel) show that Braham argued Swift's song "uses a 22 word phrase from [Braham's] song entitled Haters gone hate."

But unlucky for him, Judge Standish wrote in her dismissal, "The Court has been unable to identify a 22-word phrase that constitutes 92% of the lyrics of ‘Shake It Off’ or that is repeated 70 times as Braham alleges." 

She also made sure to clarify that the Court did not draw distinctions between the words "player" and "play-a" and "gonna" and "gone." Standish also listed other songs (like the ones named above) that use the same lyrics, easily shutting down Braham's claims. But let's be real, we all knew he was fighting a losing battle. 

The best part of the entire dismissal is most definitely the conclusion:  

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 Band-Aids will not fix the bullet holes in his case. At least for the moment, Defendants have shaken off this lawsuit. 

Pure gold. 


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