This Glasgow law student wrote her dissertation on the re-recording of Taylor Swift’s songs

A law student at the University of Glasgow has written her dissertation on the re-recording of Taylor Swift’s songs.

Final year student, Regan Eve, wrote her dissertation on copyright law and chose to focus on the singer’s re-recordings of four of her albums in the fight for ownership of her music.

Describing her work as a “full circle moment”, Regan told The Glasgow Tab how a lecturer had suggested the topic to her and as a Swiftie, she believed she had the relevant background knowledge to conduct the study.

Regan shared photos of her celebrating the end of her diss on Instagram and TikTok, where she said how she even worked a Taylor Swift song into her dissertation title.


Titled “You Belong With Me: Copyright Law in the Fight for Ownership of Master Recordings.”, she explained that Taylor’s 2008 bop “was the song name which made the most sense” for her study.

Explaining the reason behind the topic, Regan said that it was a lecturer in her third year intellectual property law class who initially gave her the inspiration. She said: “The lecturer had mentioned how great it would be if someone wrote their dissertation on Taylor’s re-recordings from a legal perspective and as a massive Swiftie I really ran with that idea.

“There were other current topical issues I considered but I felt with this topic I had the relevant background knowledge.”

 


 

With 1.3 million views on a TikTok video Regan posted about her dissertation, she explained that she enjoyed completing the study as the topic of her work was “such an interesting process and reasoning”. Being a hardcore Swiftie, she said that being able to focus her work on Taylor “definitely made it more bearable to write” but that she still needed “a million vanilla lattes from Pret” to get through it.

She added that it took time for her close family and friends to understand she was serious about the topic, but that they weren’t all that shocked. Regan said: “My family and friends were really not surprised but I do think it took them a while to realise I was serious about it.

“They knew I had a massive interest in copyright law but I don’t think they expected me to combine it with another passion of mine, that being Taylor Swift, in a piece of academic writing.”

Regan had loads of support from her supervisor, who assisted her in analysing the topic from different angles and that she didn’t discourage her from working on Taylor’s case.

“My supervisor was really keen and helped me to think about different perspectives and legal lenses to look through before arriving at the final argument, she took every idea I had seriously and never discouraged me from bringing Taylor into it. I think this is because in the world of legal practice music copyright law is such a big area to work in so the novelty of writing about Taylor’s legal battles are not so far-fetched.”

The 21-year-old added that after thanking family and friends, she even included a line of acknowledgement to Taylor, whose tenacity to reclaim her music inspired her to focus her study on copyright law. She wrote: “Of course, acknowledgement is owed to Taylor Swift. Her fearless avocation  for an artist’s right to own their work is what inspired me to conduct my research on this topic.”

Speaking on the writing process, Regan said there were ups and downs, much like any other dissertation. She said: “There were times when I did doubt myself and thought ‘what on earth am I doing?’, especially when hearing about the interesting and important array of topics my friends and peers were writing on.

Despite this, Regan chose to study Taylor’s music due to it being “such an interesting area of law”.

“It was something I was so passionate about and after delving into the research, I realised smaller artists really don’t have much bargaining power in owning the copyright to their work, so this really propelled me to writing a piece advocating for change in how music copyright is allocated through the law.”

The deadline for her dissertation also happened to be the day the Taylor Swift Era’s Tour movie was released on Disney+, a holy date for Swifties everywhere. Regan chose to celebrate the date with a heart shaped lollypop and watched the movie on her laptop with her dissertation nearby.

Comments on her TikTok video congratulated Regan on the submission of her work, with one viewer writing: “The title is genius and so are you! Congrats on finishing it!”

Another told the Glasgow student that she “deserved [Taylor’s] 22 hat when she’s in Edinburgh” and to be honest, I couldn’t agree more.

Luckily for Regan, she managed to bag tickets to see Taylor on her second night touring Edinburgh this summer, so there’s a good chance she might get it.



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