You’ve probably heard about Play-N-Skillz’ new musical masterpiece, “Literally I Can’t”, featuring Redfoo and others.
If not, you can watch the video clip here. It’s truly awful – not only for lack of musicality, but its lyrical content is just offensive.
However, one good story may come out of this unfortunate trash, because it has been alleged that the writers ‘ripped off’ someone else’s copyright protected work.
The second verse of Play’n’Skillz’ track contains a nauseatingly long set of repetitions of this line:
Literally (ew) I can’t
Wait a sec. What about the Vine called “White Girl Anthem” by Juliet which was published in April of this year? (OMG you don’t know what Vine is? It’s an app which allows users to create and upload 6 second videos that continuously loop. The kids love it.) Juliet’s Vine is a video of a girl beat boxing and two girls (one of them being Juliet) dancing and saying/singing:
“Literally (ew) I can’t (ew)” x 3
You can see it here - it’s been looped over 14 million times.
Juliet’s Vine comprises a film, musical work and potentially a literary work. These works
are protected by copyright, and therefore cannot be reproduced without her consent.
The test for copyright infringement is whether or not a ‘substantial part’ of the original work has been reproduced in the allegedly infringing work.
We think there is considerable similarity between Juliet’s work and the refrain in Play-N- Skillz’ song; the drum pattern, combined with the phrasing of the words is identical. You can hear it from 0:50 – 1:01 and 2:09 – 2:16 in Play-N-Skillz’ track.
Given the entire Vine is arguably reproduced in those parts, we’d say it’s substantial. Since apparently they didn’t seek permission from Juliet (she accuses them of ripping
her off - see here), Play-N-Skillz may have a case to answer.
For humanity’s sake, Juliet, can you please do your best to get this thing removed from the world? Erasing it from our memories will be harder.