Student tracking Taylor Swift jet pushes back on threatened legal action: ‘Look what you made me do’ – The Hill

The attorney for a college student who has tracked singer Taylor Swift’s jet pushed back at the superstar’s threat of legal action, arguing there is “nothing unlawful” about his client’s actions. 
The letter, on behalf of University of Central Florida student Jack Sweeney, comes in response to multiple requests by Swift’s attorneys that demanded he stop tracking and sharing the flight information of the global superstar online. 
For several years, Sweeney has maintained social media accounts that track the takeoffs and landings of planes owned by high-profile figures, including politicians, celebrities, and billionaires. Sweeney uses public data from the Federal Aviation Administration and often notes the carbon emissions from each flight. 
Swift’s legal team sent a cease-and-desist letter to Sweeney in December, arguing the singer would “have no choice but to pursue any and all legal remedies,” if he did not stop the “stalking and harassing behavior.” 
Sweeney on Monday posted his legal team’s Jan. 25 response on X, formerly Twitter, with the text “Look What You Made Me Do,” a nod to one of Swift’s hit songs. 
Sweeney’s attorney, James Slater, noted his client and his client’s company — GRNDCTRL, LLC — is using publicly accessible information to track the jets. He argued the @taylorswiftjets account was “engaged in protected speech” that does not violate Swift’s rights. 
“Your letter’s tone of alarm is unfounded,” Slater wrote in the letter. “Our clients’ website only provides the location of private jets using publicly available information. That information poses no threat to Ms. Swift’s safety.” 
Slater maintained Sweeney has not made any credible threats against the singer, pushing back on Swift’s attorney’s stalking claim. He added later he “doubts” Swift will pursue legal action but vowed to defend Sweeney’s rights should she do so. 
Swift’s attorneys did not immediately respond to The Hill’s request for comment. 
In a statement sent by Sweeney, Slater and co-counsel Ethan Jacobs, wrote, “Billionaires- —even people as beloved as Swift—use empty legal threats to try to conceal their conduct. But what Mr. Sweeney is doing uses public information and is not unlawful in any way.”
The “All Too Well” singer has faced scrutiny over her use of private jets and the resulting carbon emissions. Sweeney’s accounts were referenced in a 2022 study that found Swift to be one of the biggest celebrity carbon dioxide polluters.
Swift is on the 2024 leg of her “Eras,” tour that includes nearly 150 shows around the globe. It kicked off March 17 and runs through early December. She is next expected to perform four shows in Sydney this weekend before making her way to Singapore next week. 
Sweeney told FOX 35 earlier this month his accounts used to track Swift’s jet on Instagram, Facebook and X were taken down hours after he received the cease-and-desist letter from the singer’s legal team, but not by him.
The accounts still appeared to be down Wednesday.
The Hill reached out to X and Meta for further comment.  
Updated at 6:04 p.m.
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