If you were considering a line of T-shirts emblazoned with the phrase “This Sick Beat,” better think again – or risk meeting Taylor Swift in court.
These include such generic-sounding expressions as “Party Like It’s 1989,” “Nice to Meet You. Where You Been?” and “Could Show You Incredible Things.”
The trademark relating to “This Sick Beat” (the catchy phrase that appears in her first single from 1989, “Shake It Off”) is the most extensive of the group, covering everything from “removable tattoo transfers” and “shoe laces” to “home decor” – in case you wanted “This Sick Beat” embroidered on your sofa.
While the move may seem excessive, it does show just how savvy Swift and her business team are.
“What she is trying to do is to protect individual phrases within her lyrics where those lyrics have become catchphrases,” entertainment attorney Alexander Ross tells the Guardian in the U.K. “Once you have a trademarked phrase, you have the right to stop someone else using it on things like merchandising.”