Taylor Swift Can’t Shake Off Copyright Lawsuit, Must Go to Trial

The player in question.
Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Litigators gonna litigate-gate-gate-gate-gate. The copyright case against Taylor Swift over her song “Shake It Off” is officially set to go to trial, Rolling Stone reports. In August, Swift’s team made one last effort to dismiss the case, which was brought by the writers of the 2000 song “Playas Gon’ Play,” by the girl group 3LW. The case centers on similarities between that song’s lyrics, “playas, they gonna play,” and “haters, they gonna hate” and similar lines in “Shake It Off,” released 14 years later. “I still think there’s a genuine issue of material fact in part because of the expert opinion,” said Michael W. Fitzgerald, the judge in the case, during a Los Angeles hearing on September 12. Swift’s team has argued that the writers of “Playas Gon’ Play,” Sean Hall and Nathan Butler, did not “invent” the phrases, on top of Swift saying she had not heard the song before the lawsuit. Hall and Butler said the lines were “completely original and unique” at the time. After Hall and Butler first brought the case in 2017, Fitzgerald initially dismissed it, before the writers appealed and a panel of judges said the case should be brought back in 2019. A trial is now set for January 17, 2023.

Taylor Swift Can’t Shake Off Lawsuit, Must Go to Trial

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