Taylor Swift threatens legal action against Florida student who tracks her jet

Feb 7, 2024, 9:53 AM

Taylor Swift attends the 66th GRAMMY Awards at Arena on February 04, 2024 in Los Angeles...

Taylor Swift attends the 66th GRAMMY Awards at Arena on February 04, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)

(Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)

NEW YORK — Attorneys for Taylor Swift are threatening legal action against the Florida college student who tracks the private jets of celebrities and public figures, including Swift.

Jack Sweeney confirmed to CNN on Tuesday that he received a cease-and-desist letter threatening legal action from attorneys for Swift about the social media accounts he runs that track Swift’s flights. The news was first reported by the Washington Post.

Sweeney is the same person who famously drew ire from billionaire Elon Musk for tracking his jet travels online. Musk, who owns X, disbanded Sweeney’s account “@ElonJet” on the social media platform formerly known as Twitter in December 2022.

Sweeney, who was let back on the X platform, also runs accounts that track the private jet movements of Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, and a spate of other celebrities and public figures. Musk has previously said the accounts pose a “security risk” for him and his family.

Sweeney operates the accounts on several social media platforms using publicly-available flight data from the Federal Aviation Administration as well as flight signals tracked by individual aviation enthusiasts, and often includes estimates of carbon emissions from each flight he tracks in the posts.

The December letter from Swift’s lead attorney on this issue, Katie Morrone of Venable LLP, accuses Sweeney of engaging in “stalking and harassing behavior, including consistently publishing real-time and precise information about our client’s location and future whereabouts to the public on social media.”

The letter claims this poses an “imminent threat to the safety and wellbeing” of Swift. It also accuses Sweeney of disregarding the public safety of others “in exchange for public attention and/or requests for financial gain.”

The letter even references CNN reporting on Musk offering Sweeney $5,000 to delete the Twitter account tracking his jet. (Sweeney refused this offer at the time and asked for $50,000, saying he could use the money to pay for college or perhaps to buy a Tesla).

The letter states that it is a “life-or-death matter” for Swift, who has dealt with stalkers and others who wish her harm since she was a teenager. The letter states that there are “many public cases” of individuals who have come to Swift’s residences, including armed with weapons and ammunition, and “attempted to harm her.” The letter argues that sharing her location information gives these bad actors “a roadmap to carry out their plans.”

If Sweeney continues to publish information tracking Swift’s jet travels, her attorneys add, “She will have no choice but to pursue any and all legal remedies available to her.”

Sweeney told CNN over email that he received the letter from Swift’s attorneys after headlines from some nonprofit organizations and media outlets scrutinized the singer’s carbon footprint.

Sweeney also told CNN that he never intended any harm with his actions, noting that he is compiling “public information.”

“I actually think Swift has some good songs,” Sweeney added. Still, he said, “I believe in transparency and public information.” Sweeney also said there is high public interest from Swift’s fans in the accounts, saying she should have “a decent expectation” that her jet will be tracked “whether or not I do it.”

A representative for Taylor Swift declined CNN’s request for comment Tuesday. When asked about evidence that stalkers of Swift had used the jet-tracking accounts run by Sweeney, a spokeswoman for Swift told the Washington Post, “We cannot comment on any ongoing police investigation but can confirm the timing of stalkers suggests a connection. His posts tell you exactly when and where she would be.”

Interest in Swift’s upcoming travels, and specifically whether she will make it back to the US from her overseas tour in time to see her boyfriend Travis Kelce in the Super Bowl, has intensified in recent weeks.

Just last week, the Japanese Embassy in the U.S. tweeted a statement saying that despite the long-haul flight back from Tokyo and a 17-hour time difference, Swift should be able to make it to Las Vegas from Tokyo in time for the big game if she departs Tokyo in the evening after her concert.

KSL 5 TV Live

National News

Palestinians walk through the destruction from the Israeli offensive in Jabaliya refugee camp in th...

Zeke Miller, Aamer Madhani and Matthew Lee

Biden approves military airdrops of aid into Gaza after chaotic encounter left more than 100 dead

President Joe Biden says that the U.S. will begin air-dropping humanitarian assistance into Gaza, a day after more than 100 of Palestinians were killed during a chaotic encounter with Israeli troops.

51 minutes ago

Kevin Monahan was convicted of second-degree murder, among other charges..
Mandatory Credit:	Lori V...

Ray Sanchez, CNN

New York man sentenced to 25 years to life in prison for killing woman when car turned in wrong driveway

Kevin Monahan was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison for shooting and killing a woman who was a passenger in a car that turned in the wrong driveway.

5 hours ago

FILE - This image, contained in the indictment against former President Donald Trump, and partially...

Eric Tucker, Adriana Gomez Licon and Freida Frisaro

Judge in Trump’s classified documents case is expected to set a trial date during a crucial hearing

The federal judge overseeing the classified documents prosecution of Donald Trump is expected to set a trial date.

8 hours ago

The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced February 29 that Heritage Store Hydrogen Peroxide ...

John Towfighi, CNN

Mouthwash recalled nationwide over poisoning risk

One brand of hydrogen peroxide mouthwash is being recalled nationwide for posing a potential poisoning risk for children.

18 hours ago

NORTH LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - NOVEMBER 10: Ballots are processed by an election worker at the Clark Cou...

Gabe Stern, Associated Press/Report for America

Nevada county election official in charge of controversial 2022 hand-count plan resigns

A Nye County spokesperson says top elections official Mark Kampf is resigning.

18 hours ago

Protesters gathered outside the Alabama State House in Montgomery in the wake of the IVF ruling on ...

Devon M. Sayers, Shirin Faqiri and Eric Levenson, CNN

Alabama House and Senate approve bills aimed at protecting in vitro fertilization after personhood ruling

The Alabama House and Senate each passed bills Thursday aimed at protecting in vitro fertilization treatments .

23 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

Taylor Swift threatens legal action against Florida student who tracks her jet