Taylor Swift in the official video for ‘Shake it Off’ (left), U.S. District Judge Michael W. Fitzgerald of California (right); Photo: YouTube (left)/Wikipedia/Public Domain


U.S. District Judge Michael W. Fitzgerald of California has dismissed a copyright lawsuit filed against Taylor Swift ruling that the lyrics to “Shake it Off” are too “banal” to have been copied. Judge Fitzgerald also called the lyrics, “too brief, unoriginal, and uncreative.”

3LW songwriters Sean Hall and Nathan Butler filed the lawsuit, claiming that Swift stole the composition for “Shake it Off” from their song “Playas Gon’ Play.” The lawsuit accused Swift of lifting the verse “The players gonna play, play, play, and the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate.” In 3LW’s song, the chorus begins in similar fashion with, “The playas gon’ play/Them haters gonna hate.”

The lyrics are certainly alike, but Judge Fitzgerald was quick to dismiss the artistic credibility. “In the early 2000s, popular culture was adequately suffused with the concepts of players and haters to render the phrases ‘playas…gonna play’ or ‘haters…gonna hate,’ standing on their own, no more creative than ‘runners gonna run’; ‘drummers gonna drum’; or ‘swimmers gonna swim,’” he wrote.

“The concept of actors acting in accordance with their essential nature is not at all creative; it is banal.”

As reported by The Daily Beast, Gerald Fox, the lawyer representing Hall and Butler, plans to file an appeal. “He cannot make himself an expert in the music industry,” he said. “I’m sorry. It’s actually embarrassing.”

Judge Fitzgerald may have unknowingly become a pop culture hero. He took a giant swipe at not only Swift and 3LW, but all the lame songwriters out there making a fortune off of mediocre writing.