Taylor Swift’s lawyers are trying to shake off claims that the “Shake It Off” singer stole lyrics with a new court motion.
Swift was sued in September by songwriters Sean Hall and Nathan Butler, who created the song “Playas Gon’ Play” for the girl group 3LW in 2001. The duo claimed that Swift stole their lyrics and used them in her famous hit single “Shake It Off.”
On Wednesday, the singer’s lawyers asked the federal judge to dismiss the copyright lawsuit against Swift and argued that the concepts of players playing and haters hating are common music phrases and “public domain clichés” that can’t be claimed as copyright, according to Variety.
Swift used the familiar phrase in the chorus of her song which says, “Players gonna play, play, play, play, play, and haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate.”
“There can be no copyright protection in ‘playas, they gonna play and haters, they gonna hate,’ because it would impermissibly monopolize the idea that players will play and haters will hate,” Swift’s lawyers said. “Plaintiffs’ claim to being the only ones in the world who can refer to players playing and haters hating is frivolous… Providing a copyright monopoly in the phrase would prevent others from sharing the idea that players play and haters hate.”
To further prove their argument, Swift’s legal team went on to cite other examples of famous songs that use the “player” and “hater” phrase such as “Dreams” by Fleetwood Mac, in which the song says, “Players only love you when they’re playing,” and “Playa Hater,” by the Notorious B.I.G., where the phrase “playa, playa hater” is used as the part of the song’s chorus.