US College Student Who Tracked Taylor Swift's Private Jet Hits Back

Jack Sweeney, the 21-year-old college student who received a cease-and-desist letter from Taylor Swift's lawyer for tracking her private jet, has responded defiantly.

Lisha Kannan
New Update

Image Sources from Los Angeles Times

Jack Sweeney, the 21-year-old college student who received a cease-and-desist letter from Taylor Swift's lawyer for tracking her private jet, has responded defiantly. Posting on X (formerly Twitter), Sweeney shared the letter sent by his own legal team, accompanied by a reference to one of Swift's songs, Look What You Made Me Do, from her Reputation album.


In the letter, Swift's attorney accused Sweeney of engaging in "stalking and harassing behaviours" by monitoring the singer's jet activity. However, Sweeney's legal team countered, stating that there was no evidence of any legal wrongdoing in his actions. Attorney James Slater of Slater Legal PLLC emphasised that tracking private jets using publicly accessible information, including data from the Federal Aviation Administration, is not unlawful.

Slater also highlighted that similar data had been used to publish information about other public figures, such as Elon Musk. He concluded that Sweeney's use of publicly available information for tracking private jets, including those of public figures like Taylor Swift, does not violate any laws regarding protected speech or privacy.

Sweeney's Tracking Methods and Defense

Jack Sweeney, a University of Central Florida student, defends his actions, claiming that he uses publicly available data from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and information from volunteer hobbyists who track aircraft signals using ADS-B receivers. Sweeney asserts that his intention is not to harm anyone but rather to provide transparency and public information. He argues that Swift's fans are the primary audience for his tracking accounts and subreddit, emphasizing the broader interest in Swift's whereabouts evident in public statements, such as the Embassy of Japan's confidence in her flight to the Super Bowl.


Sweeney's defence revolves around the notion that he is merely sharing factual information and highlights the public nature of details related to Swift's travel plans. However, Swift's legal team and spokesperson contend that this information sharing poses a direct threat to Swift's safety, particularly given her history of dealing with real-world stalking incidents.

Swift's Private Jet Usage and Environmental Controversy

The situation involving Swift's private jet tracking also brings attention to previous criticisms of the pop star's use of private jets. In July 2022, a report by digital marketing agency Yard claimed Swift took 170 flights on her private jet within a short timeframe, a claim Swift's spokesperson vehemently denied, calling it blatantly incorrect. The spokesperson further addressed environmental concerns related to private jet usage, noting that Swift purchases more than double the necessary carbon credits to offset her travel. This broader context adds layers to the controversy, highlighting the challenges celebrities face in balancing privacy, safety, and environmental considerations in the public eye and the age of social media scrutiny.

Taylor Swift privacy concerns Private Jet