Ed Sheeran did not commit plagiarism for “Shape of You”, decides British justice

Singer Ed Sheeran at the NRJ Music Awards in Cannes, November 20, 2021.

British singer Ed Sheeran did not plagiarize his song Shape of Youconcluded on Wednesday April 6 the High Court of Justice in London, which thus dismissed two songwriters who seized it.

The 31-year-old artist did not copy, “neither deliberately nor unconsciously”part of the melody of the song oh why by Sami Chokri and Ross O’Donoghue for his planetary hit, underlined judge Antony Zacaroli. Dressed in a dark suit and tie, Ed Sheeran appeared in person at the High Court in London on the first day of the trial, March 4, during which the two titles were broadcast.

Ed Sheeran song, Shape Of You :

The song by Sami Chokri and Ross O’Donoghue, oh why :

For Plaintiffs’ Counsel, Andrew Sutcliffe, “similarity” between certain passages was “striking”they are “almost identical”. “Mr. Sheeran is undoubtedly very talented, he is a genius. But it is also a magpie”he added. “He borrows ideas and throws them into his songs, sometimes he recognizes it, sometimes he doesn’t”he had advanced: that “depends on who you are and if he thinks he can do it with impunity”.

Other charges

The lawyer pointed out that his clients were “very talented songwriters, who deserve the same respect as any other artist and recognition when it’s due”. Ed Sheeran and his co-authors, Steven McCutcheon and John McDaid, had denied these accusations. They had applied in May 2018 to the High Court for it to recognize that there had been no copyright infringement. Two months later, in July, MM. Chokri and O’Donoghue had in turn started legal proceedings against them.

Shape of You, the best-selling title in the world in 2017, also has 3 billion plays on Spotify and almost 6 billion views on YouTube. The payment of royalties linked to this title, estimated at 20 million pounds sterling (24 million euros) according to the newspaper The Telegraphhas been suspended by the collective management organization PRS.

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In 2017, Ed Sheeran was also the artist who sold the most albums in the world, according to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, with his third album divide, which includes the single Shape of You.

This is not the first time the artist has been sued for plagiarism. In the United States, the heirs of soul legend Marvin Gaye have accused him of being a little too inspired by Let’s get it on for his mega hit Thinking Out Loud.

The World with AFP

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