Seoul court rules against US composer in plagiarism suit over 'Baby Shark'


'Baby Shark Dance' a sing-and-dance video for the megahit children's song, has racked up more than 9 billion views on YouTube. Photo: YouTube

A Seoul court on Friday (July 23) ruled against an American composer in a plagiarism suit he brought against the producer of the popular South Korean children's song Baby Shark two years ago.

The Seoul Central District Court rejected a claim by New York-based composer Johnny Only that Baby Shark, a world-famous song released by South Korean education startup SmartStudy in 2015, copied his 2011 song, Yonhap news agency reported.

The rhythmic two-minute song featuring a shark family and their underwater hunt for small fish has gone viral in cyberspace and on the small screen at home and abroad.

Baby Shark Dance, a sing-and-dance video for the megahit children's song, has racked up more than 9 billion views on YouTube.

Only, whose legal name is Jonathan Wright, filed a lawsuit with the Seoul court in March 2019, claiming that the South Korean song plagiarised his own song Baby Shark remade in 2011 with a unique rhythm to an orally transmitted folk song.

But SmartStudy has rejected the plagiarism claim, saying its song was a recreation of a traditional North American children's song that has no valid copyrights. – Bernama

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