Brooklyn rapper 2 Milly is suing Epic Games over the use of his dance moves without asking for his permission or giving him due credit. The rapper claims that Fortnite, Epic’s most popular video game, stole his signature “Milly Rock” dance move and renamed it “Swipe It.”
2 Milly’s case is being handled by attorney David Hecht and his team from Pierce Bainbridge. They are suing Epic Games over copyright infringement and exploiting African American talent for profit in a video game. “I was never compensated by Epic Games for their use of the ‘Milly Rock. They never even asked for my permission,” said the rapper via press release. This lawsuit could set a precedent that has consequences for Fortnite and for other video games that use existing dance moves as Emotes, making these moves popular without giving the artists their due credit.
In July, Chance the Rapper was one of the first to speak out against Fortnite, claiming that the video game should use the artists’ music if they’re taking these dance moves and using them as Emotes.
Fortnite should put the actual rap songs behind the dances that make so much money as Emotes. Black creatives created and popularized these dances but never monetized them. Imagine the money people are spending on these Emotes being shared with the artists that made them
— Chance The Rapper (@chancetherapper) July 13, 2018
“I think they believe that they can railroad African American talent because they doubt that there will be any legal consequence,” said Hecht in an interview with Kotaku. He claims that there’s an alarming general expectation in the business world where individual artists, famous or not, can’t stand up to large corporations.
Epic games hasn’t made any comments regarding the lawsuit.