Taylor Swift sued over design of ‘Lover’ companion book

Teresa La Dart claims elements of her self-published book 'Lover' were copied in a book Swift released alongside her 2019 album of the same name

Taylor Swift is being sued by a poet and author named Teresa La Dart who claims a book Swift released alongside her 2019 album ‘Lover’ copied elements of La Dart’s book of the same name.

In a complaint filed in Tennessee federal court on August 23, La Dart claims that “a number of creative elements” from her book – a collection of “poems, anecdotes and photos” self-published in 2010 – were copied in Swift’s book that accompanies a deluxe version of her ‘Lover’ album.

As the Daily Mail reports, in the filing, La Dart alleges Swift copied both “the vibe and design” of her own book, as well as its “format” of “a recollection of past years memorialized in a combination of written and pictorial components”.

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In her allegations, La Dart specifically references the similarities of both books sharing a title, having covers that use “pastel pinks and blues”, images of their author “photographed in a downward pose” and the designs comprising of “interspersed photographs and writings”.

The cover of Teresa La Dart’s book ‘Lover’ next to Taylor Swift’s ‘Lover’ book

La Dart is reportedly seeking in “excess of one million dollars” in damages.

NME has reached out to representatives for Swift for comment. In a statement shared with Pitchfork, La Dart’s lawyer said her client “feels strongly that her full work needs to be compared with [Swift’s] before a conclusion is made here”.

They added that the decision to file the complaint “was not made nor taken lightly considering the other side is quite formidable”, and they “hope the masses can understand these issues from her perspective”.

Earlier this month, responding to a separate copyright lawsuit, Swift denied she had copied the lyrics of her 2014 hit ‘Shake It Off’ from ‘Playas Gon’ Play’ by the American pop trio 3LW. The lawsuit was filed in 2017 by songwriters Sean Hall and Nathan Butler and dropped the following year but revived in 2019 by an appeals panel. In 2021, a judge ruled that the case be decided by a jury, but a trial date is yet to be set.

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Responding to the lawsuit in a federal court document filed on August 8, Swift said “the lyrics to ‘Shake It Off’ were written entirely by me”. She claimed she’d “never heard” the 2000 song ‘Playas Gon’ Play’, or of 3LW at all, writing: “The first time I ever heard the song was after this claim was made.”

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