Taylor Swift's private jet tracker Jack Sweeney defends posts – USA TODAY

One college student has no problem sharing Taylor Swift’s flight paths all too well.
University of Central Florida student Jack Sweeney is pushing back on a cease-and-desist letter sent to him by Swift’s attorney demanding he stop publicly posting the singer’s flights on her jet. The 21-year-old ran the now-defunct Instagram page @taylorswiftjets, where he reported her flight activity using data from various sources of publicly available information.
Swift’s attorney, Katie Wright Morrone, sent multiple letters to Sweeney demanding that he stop tracking and publicly sharing her flight information. In a dismissive reply shared on X on Monday, Sweeney’s attorney said the 22-year-old student and his company, GRNDCTRL, did nothing illegal.
Sweeney captioned the post, “Look What You Made Me Do,” referencing the title track off Swift’s 2017 “Reputation” album. He also shared the two letters sent to him by Swift’s team.
“Put simply, there is nothing unlawful about GRNDCTRL’s use of publicly accessible information to track private jets, including those by public figures like Taylor Swift,” wrote Sweeney’s attorney, James Slater.
Slater argued that Sweeney’s speech is protected and did not violate any of Swift’s legal rights. He added that GRNDCTRL has also reported flight history for Russian oligarchs and Elon Musk.
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Swift’s attorneys argue that Sweeney’s actions put the popstar at risk by providing up-to-date location information accessible to potential stalkers and would-be harassers.
Slater rejected those claims by clarifying that Sweeney is using information that is already made publicly available. He added that the language in Morrone’s letter defines a stalker as someone who poses a “credible threat” to a victim.
“Our clients have never made any threats against Ms. Swift and your letter does not suggest they have done so,” Slater said. “Further, your letter’s tone is unfounded.”
USA TODAY has reached out to Swift’s representatives for comment.
Sweeney has multiple social media accounts tracking aircrafts belonging to celebrities, billionaires and politicians, with some even analyzing the carbon footprint of the jet owners’ trips.
The information doesn’t come from one source bur rather uses data pieced together from a few different sources of publicly available information, such as registration information from the Federal Aviation Administration, and broadcast signals from the planes themselves. Those signals are known as Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast, or ADS-B, data.
ADS-B technology is required by the Federal Aviation Administration on aircraft and shares real-time position, altitude and other information that is important to air traffic controllers. The data also allows for sites like FlightAware.com to show real-time commercial flight locations.
Contributing: Jeanine Santucci and Christopher Cann

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