No Copyright Infringement Intended

Intellectual property and copyright protection are no laughing matters, but Taylor Swift’s legal team has been so protective of her copyrighted material it’s become an internet meme.

Swift began registering trademarks in October 2014 for catch phrases like “this sick beat” (from the song “Shake It Off”) and “Nice to meet you, where you been?” The intention was to thwart the efforts of unauthorized T-shirt vendors during her 1989 World Tour, which began in Japan in May.

However, the copyrights have been aggressively protected to the point where tweets from a New Zealand fan page were reportedly being withheld on copyright grounds. And then there was the Citizen Radio podcast.

“Ahem. In case you were wondering what happened the 9/3 episode from this week, we have received a cease & desist letter from Taylor Swift’s team because Jamie briefly recited the lyrics from her Wildest Dreams song,” the podcasters said on the Citizen Radio Facebook page.

“This is 100% serious. TSwift apparently has a team of podcast listeners who tracked us down and got the episode deleted. Do any of you know a breathtakingly beautiful lady who can infiltrate the Girl Squad to tell her about fair use?”

Whether true or not, it helped launch a Tumblr meme, where authors inserted Swift’s catch phrases into innocuous sentences, followed by some copypasta legalese (via

One reads: “Last night I was just minding my own business and this nasty bug landed on my arm and I kept trying to shake it off (Taylor Swift™ No copyright infringement intended. Property of TAS LLC Management 2014©).”

A spoof of a standardized test reads: “Rules: for each question, mark A, B, C or D. Fill the circle completely next to the answer of your choice. If you do not know the answer, leave a blank space (Taylor Swift™ No copyright infringement intended. Property of TAS LLC Management 2012©).”

Although Citizen Radio posted its complaint Sept. 3, the meme took root after an Instagram involving One Direction’s Niall Horan singing a few lines of Swift’s “22” at a recent concert on his birthday. The Sept. 13 Instagram video post led to a Tumblr user adding the trademark caption.