Watch The Lawsuit: Jay-Z Sued For Stealing Parts of His Own Memoir?

June 19, 2012  |  

Did Jay-Z plagiarize parts of his best-selling book “Decoded”?

That’s what Patrick White is alleging in a lawsuit he filed against the superstar, Dream Hampton and Random House last week. reports:

The lawsuit, which was filed in United States District Court, Central District, claims that White’s laptop was stolen in 2009.

“In 2009, my personal computer was compromised, resulting in my personal work to be used in Jay-Z’s book Decoded which was released in 2010,” White claims.

In the hand-written lawsuit, White claims he was shocked when he saw that portions of a book he had been working on were strikingly similar to portions of “Decoded.”

“The book contains various expressions/colors/phrases, which correlates to my work,” White alleges. “After contacting or attempting to contact the co-author, I got no reply.”

White is suing for copyright infringement and invasion of property.

The first questions that arise are who is Patrick White and how does he think his laptop landed in the hands of Dream Hampton and Jay-Z? This story doesn’t even seem plausible and it will be interesting to see if the court even pays it any attention. If a judge determines this complaint has no merit it won’t be the first time Jay-Z is the subject of a bogus lawsuit.

Earlier this month, an Ohio woman attempted to sue the capital city for $500 billion dollars after her car was impounded and sold. She claimed that Jay-Z and Diddy were “known to have government influence” and were likely involved in her car troubles. Not surprisingly, the judge dismissed the suit on grounds that it’s frivolous.

It’s likely this plagiarism lawsuit will reach the same fate.

What do you think? Did Jay-Z really steal content for his book or is this guy just looking for 15 minutes of fame?

Alissa Henry is a freelance writer living in Columbus, OH. Follow her on Twitter @AlissaInPink. Or check out her blog: This Cannot Be My Life

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  • Candacey Doris

    How exactly does he say his work got all the way to Jay Z. Is he famous enough for anyone to actually go after his work? He doesn’t say his laptop is stolen. Really, the only Patrick White that I know of is the (deceased) Australian writer. I think this might be bogus. But you never know. let’s see the evidence.

    • Toria

      He actually did say his laptop was stolen in 2009. I guess you must have missed that part.

      • Candacey Doris

        Indeed i did. But hey, fact is, it’s still highly unlikely Jay-Z put on his ninja gear an went out on the town.

  • Show me some proof and i will comment more

  • Milchoc

    that’s a bunch of crap. that bs will get thrown outta court, this idiot is looking for his 15 minutes of fame!

  • Refette

    The plaintiff says (in his handwritten complaint) that “Decoded” seemed similar to the book he was “writting” on his computer before it was stolen and “comprimised”. He also says that among other things he found “similar COLORS” were used that correlates to his book. Does he hold a copyright on orange? Green?

    • anonymous

      But….”colors” doesn’t mean actual colors. It is a term of art in the legal world used to describe the characteristics one might easily associate with a certain producer, or writer in this case. An identification if you will.
      This part is not in response to your comment but the author: Do not underestimate the validity of a claim that is handwritten. The man likely named Jay-Z as a defendant to ensure he was naming the correct person responsible for the alleged infringement. In the world of litigation it is not uncommon for people to name multiple defendants, even if only one person engaged in the wrongful act or conduct. This is done to make sure the proper person is placed on notice of the lawsuit. Finally, this “claim” certainly has more merit than the woman’s claim alleging that Jay-Z was responsible for her car being towed. Copyright infringement is very easy to accomplish and in this day and age where everyone is trying to make a buck, I don’t put it past anybody. I’m not saying Jay-Z stole the computer, but it is not completely out of the question to believe that portions of his book are borrowed.

      • Toria

        Great response!

  • Niklvin

    Oh Ilyphilly u sooo funny

  • Rayven

    Anything is possible…this is the first time someone famous has stolen someone elses words

  • IllyPhilly

    Jay-Z would never still anything!!! He’s a writer not a biter. *side eye*

    • bkabbagej

      Really?!?…and where did Jay-Z’s English and Writing degree come from? He’s a very intelligent and talented guy but I put nothing past anyone and if someone was capable of living the lifestyle Jay-Z did in his early life then why is he unable to steal? Just saying?

      • TRUTH IS

        I think she is being sarcastic. These ppl engage in Skullduggery.

        • IllyPhilly


      • IllyPhilly

        LOL, I guess you don’t follow Jay-Z’s career much.

      • free thinker

        You do not need a degree in writing to be an author.Ask the writer of Harry Potter. You need creative ideas and a grip on the english language and creative writing process. Some college graduates are educated fools and snobs.

    • NYCscholar