Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Ed Sheeran in his rightful place, thanks to photo illustration software (Photo: Stefania D'Alessandro/Getty)

It’s about time someone stood up for the rights of people who don’t want others to listen to Ed Sheeran anywhere within earshot. The British crooner, whose likable and good-natured demeanor clearly mark him as a monster on par with Michael Bublé and Josh Groban, recently awarded the writers of TLC’s “No Scrubs” a songwriting credit on his new track “Shape Of You,” perhaps in an effort to divert attention from the true legal battle we should all be waging: Making his music illegal. And that’s what came from a recent courtroom scenario, albeit in roundabout form: ITV reports a woman from Birmingham, England, was sentenced to eight weeks’ jail time after repeatedly (and loudly) blasting the new single on repeat for upwards of half an hour.

To be clear, the judge didn’t specifically single out the song itself, a track whose nefariously catchy rhythm and melody make it a real contender for song of the year, in his verdict. No, he set aside the true menace to waste his time focusing on the facts of the case. Sonia Bryce, mother of three, had already been served with an injunction from her landlords barring her from “creating a nuisance” after previous noise complaints—an injunction she violated last December, earning her a six-week sentence at the time. (It’s unknown what song or songs were to blame for that incident, though one need only look at the glimmer of malevolence masquerading as genteel humility in Sheeran’s eyes to guess at the source, the damnable hitmaker.)


However, in announcing the new eight-week jail term for Bryce, the judge did send a clear message to others who might be tempted to give in to the hook-filled wiles of the Bing Crosby of our times. “You must learn that you should behave as a reasonable and responsible adult and not make life for your neighbors the misery that you have,” he admonished. Truly, a warning for all potential enjoyers of such generic but infectiously appealing tunes: Justice will find you, especially if it has already found you multiple times before, because you seem like kind of a shitty neighbor.

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