Getting the Kesha case wrong

To the non-legal mind, Kesha’s court case is eminently reasonable. She would like to be unshackled from a decade-old contract tying her to producer and collaborator Lukasz Gottwald (aka “Dr Luke”), a man she says has drugged, raped and psychologically abused her from the time she was 18. Specifically, she would like to be freed from working with his company Kemosabe, a subsidiary of Sony, explaining in a recent injunction request: “I know I cannot work with Dr Luke. I physically cannot. I don’t feel safe in any way.” (Gottwald has consistently denied all allegations.)

It doesn’t take a legal genius to determine that even if proving she was raped is an impossibility, she should be taken very seriously when she says she feels unsafe working with this man. But the legal mind presiding over her most recent case disagrees because, as it turns out, there are a million legal reasons why her personal story can’t be heard in any meaningful way.

Kesha can walk away from that contract, that work and that man, any time she likes. We do not have contracts of slavery and they would not be legal if we did.

She is entirely free to go and do whatever work she likes: except singing on pop records. Because she signed a contract which said she would only sing on pop records with that company and that man.

22 thoughts on “Getting the Kesha case wrong”

  1. Oh, and today’s baffling extrapolation by a feminist whackjob:

    “An estimated 68% of rapes go unreported. This case is unlikely to do much to change that statistic.”

    Nope. Me neither.

  2. So Much For Subtlety

    Because she signed a contract which said she would only sing on pop records with that company and that man.

    Not even that. The label has offered her someone else to work with.

    She could also, presumably, buy her way out. At this point if she could find another record deal, they might reach a settlement. But having got what she wanted from the deal, why should she be allowed to walk away with cash and prizes? Because of her feels?

  3. Only 68% of rapes not reported.

    I thought the line was that only 6% of rapes were reported.

    Keeping lies straight was always a problem for liars.

  4. So Much For Subtlety

    But the legal mind presiding over her most recent case disagrees because, as it turns out, there are a million legal reasons why her personal story can’t be heard in any meaningful way.

    They heard her personal story, sweetcheeks. They just didn’t give a f**k.

    For once the law was not such an ass.

  5. the legal mind presiding over her most recent case was, of course, a female judge. But the writer can’t bring herself to acknowledge it.

  6. “there are a million legal reasons why her personal story can’t be heard in any meaningful way.” Only one, actually. Presumption of innocence.

    *yawn*

  7. She is fishing for any possible way out of the contract by looking for any offence, ‘hate-crime’ in this attempt, that could render the contract null and void. The judge, seeing straight through it, tossed it out. Kesha is getting her arse handed to her, wrapped up in a large legal bill. No other record label will touch her with a barge pole, it will effectively end her recording career. Poor little millennial, no safe spaces in the real world.

  8. So Much For Subtlety

    NielsR – “Only one, actually. Presumption of innocence.”

    Not sure that is all that relevant – a civil case not a criminal one. Civil courts often operate without the benefit of the presumption of innocence. Libel for instance presumes guilt.

    More to the point, they do not need proof beyond a reasonable doubt. A balance of probabilities is enough.

    Kesha still got her butt kicked and then handed to her.

  9. As SMFS points out above, Sony have offered her a get out. She is not obliged to work with “that man”.

    The Guardianista would tear up the law for the sake of the Devil.

  10. There is a solution to these sorts of situations, but those of you not in the UK won’t be aware.

    It has become a cause celebre as a result of a shocking story that unfolded in the Archers on Radio 4, this week.

  11. The Meissen Bison

    The trick seems to be that one need simply morph into a victim whereupon the chains and shackles of constraint simply fall away.

    For instance, I think it’s going to be a long, long time… until the courts touch down on an earlier wisdom whereby parents protect children rather than vice versa.

  12. “Decade old contract”

    I thought most record* deals were based on providing a set number of albums*. In which case she can get out of it by doing some “Here, My Dear” style ones. Possibly on the subject of rape?

    *Showing my age, I have no idea what the terminology is now we’re in the download era

  13. The Inimitable Steve

    Not saying Ke$ha is a liar, or indeed that a grown woman who goes by the name of Ke$ha might be a bit unreliable, but I’d be more inclined to believe her 50 Shades of Savile story if she hadn’t changed the key details.

    Anyway, the Guardian argument boils down to saying that women, like children, have limited capacity and therefore shouldn’t be expected to fulfil their legal obligations under contracts they freely entered into.

    I’m not sure even Sharia law goes that far.

  14. The Inimitable Steve

    GlenDorran – Marvin Gaye was so hideously talented that even his weaker stuff was still interesting.

    I’d be surprised if Ke$ha released anything as good as “Here, My Dear”.

  15. “Your honour, my client possesses a vagina and as such should not be subject to the Law of Contract”.

    Judge: “I disagree”.

    Riots in the Capitol as the angry mob blows up Twitter.

  16. Could another record label buy out her contract, sort-of like football clubs did before the Bosman ruling?

  17. So Much For Subtlety

    Andrew M – “Could another record label buy out her contract, sort-of like football clubs did before the Bosman ruling?”

    At this point, why would you want to? Would you want to produce her next album? If she is capable of doing this, what is she capable of doing next?

    Michael Bay brought Megan Fox from nowhere to such fame that some men’s magazines were calling for a “No Megan Fox Day”. She was such a b!tch on set that the crew signed an anonymous letter protesting her diva-ness. The crew were so mean Bay defended her. She compared Bay to Hitler.

    Not a lot of people have wanted to work with her ever since. That is sensible. There was a reason that people used to teach young ladies manners. They work.

  18. Wasn’t “Here, My Dear” a payoff in a divorce settlement rather than a contractual obligation?

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