Britney Spears, Somali pirates Britney Spears performs onstage during the iHeartRadio Music Festival.
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This is one "Oops" from Britney Spears that can be excused — the pop princess' most catchy singles are reportedly being used to fend off Somali pirates, who have a surprising aversion to American music.

Spears' songs like "Oops! I Did It Again" and "Baby One More Time" get blasted by ships out to sea off the east coast of Africa, which has proven an effective technique for preventing pirates from boarding. Merchant navy officer Rachel Owens told the U.K.'s Metro that Britney Spears songs were specifically selected for being particularly annoying — to the pirates, at least.

"These guys can’t stand Western culture or music, making Britney’s hits perfect," Owens said. "It’s so effective the ship’s security rarely needs to resort to firing guns."


Somali pirates have long posed a threat to Western tankers off the coast of Somalia. The real life story of an American ship captain and his crew, who found their vessel hijacked by pirates in 2009, unfolded on the big screen in the recent release of Tom Hanks' latest film "Captain Phillips."

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