Epic Games is under fire from rapper 2 Milly, who has filed a lawsuit against the Fortnite developer that alleges that one of the game’s dance emotes infringes his copyright for his dance, the Milly Rock. According to the lawsuit, 2 Milly, aka Terrence Ferguson, is accusing Epic of “misappropriating the Milly Rock dance through an in-game ‘Swipe It’ emote that [bears] noticeable similarities to Ferguson’s choreography and was included, according to the lawsuit, without crediting him or contacting him for permission to use or reproduce the move.”
MMO players will know that this is certainly not the first instance of real-world dances being replicated in video games; just as one example from the MMO world, World of Warcraft’s racial dances draw inspiration from (read: are near-direct copies of) the likes of Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga, and Beyonce. The difference, however, is that Fortnite’s dance emotes can be purchased with the game’s premium currency, so there’s certainly a strong argument that Epic is directly profiting from Ferguson’s choreography, though whether that argument will ultimately hold up in court remains to be seen.
Really interested to see where this goes. It’s a milestone for the use of dance in games, and the intellectual property of dance overall. https://t.co/SvmhVW5vGl
— Anil Dash 🥭 (@anildash) December 5, 2018