In response to claims made by two songwriters claiming her 2014 hit song was plagiarised from a 3LW tune that peaked at No. 81 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2001, pop diva Taylor Swift has filed a declaration in court.
Swift claimed in court documents that she had never heard the song that was the subject of the alleged plagiarism. She emphasised once more that she was the only author of the song’s lyrics.
‘The lyrics to ‘Shake It Off’ were written entirely by me,’ Swift claimed in her declaration. ‘Until learning of plaintiff’s claim in 2017, I had never heard of the song ‘Play’s Gon’ Play’ and had never heard of that song or group 3LW.’
Swift and her lawyer also argued, according to a Billboard story, that the same wording in the two songs is due to the vocabulary being commonplace. Additionally, they noted that before Sean Hall and Nathan Butler authored ‘Play’s Gon’ Play,’ the terms were part of common speech.
While attending school in Wyomissing Hills and high school in Hendersonville, Taylor recalled hearing other children use the expressions ‘players play’ and ‘haters hate’ together.
‘These phrases were akin to other commonly used sayings like ‘don’t hate the playa, hate the game,’ ‘take a chill pill,’ and ‘say it, don’t spray it.’ … I was struck by messages that people prone to doing something will do it, and the best way to overcome it is to shrug it off and keep living,’ she added.
For the past five years, this plagiarism lawsuit has repeatedly made its way through the courts. 2018 saw the first time a judge overturned it. The lawsuit was reinstated by an appeals court the following year.