The U.S. composer appealed directly to the Supreme Court in the end
The copyright infringement lawsuit of the popular children’s song “Shark Family” (Baby Shark), which lasted for more than four years, eventually goes to the Supreme Court.
According to Star News coverage, U.S. composer Jonathan Robert Wright (Johnny Only), who has claimed copyright infringement of the Shark Family, filed an appeal on the 9th against the appeal ruling on May 19th.
Earlier, the 8-1 Civil Affairs Department of the Seoul Central District Court (Appeal) dismissed the plaintiff’s appeal after Jonathan Robert Wright held an appeal date against Smart Study (currently The Pink Pong Company).
Jonathan Robert Wright filed a lawsuit against SmartStudy in March 2019 to compensate for copyright infringement damages. Johnny Only claims that “The Shark Family” plagiarized the second work “Baby Shark” remade in 2011 by giving its own characteristics to word-of-mouth children’s songs, while Smart Study refuted that it was a remake of a long-lost children’s song in North America, not Johnny Only’s “Baby Shark.”
Johnny Only’s side did not even accept the second trial’s ruling following the first trial’s ruling against the plaintiff.
“Shark Family” is a children’s song released by Smart Study through Pinkfong, an early childhood education content, in 2015. It gained popularity with repetitive and easy lyrics and an addictive chorus called “tururu-tururu.”
In particular, the song’s English title “Baby Shark” ranked 32nd on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the first time as a Korean children’s song, and fans of the Washington Nationals, the winner of the 2019 Major League World Series, also cheered for the team and sang “Baby Shark” as a group.
In addition, “Shark Family” entered the UK’s official single chart in August 2018 and recorded 12 billion views on YouTube, ranking 27th in the world’s most watched YouTube video at the time. In particular, “Shark Family” ranked eighth in November 2022 with more than 200 million views on the top 200 most streaming rankings released by the British official chart to mark the 70th anniversary of its launch