Epic Games responds to lawsuits, says "dance routines are not protected by copyright"

midian182

Posts: 5,862   +48
Staff member

Epic Games is being sued by BlocBoy JB, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air’s Afonso Ribeiro, Russell “Backpack Kid” Horning, Orange Shirt Kid, and rapper Terrence “2 Milly” Ferguson, for unauthorized use of their dances.

Epic’s attorney, Dale Cendali, wrote in a letter to the California Federal Court that 2 Milly’s lawsuit was “fundamentally at odds with free speech.”

“No one can own a dance step,” the motion reads. “Copyright law is clear that individual dance steps and simple dance routines are not protected by copyright, but rather are building blocks of free expression, which are in the public domain for choreographers, dancers, and the general public to use, perform, and enjoy.”

Epic also claims that the “Swipe It” dance emote in question is different from 2 Milly’s version. According to the letter, the rapper’s move, referred to as “the Dance Step,” features the torso, shoulders, and head facing forward while the ribs move side to side with the arm movements. The emote, meanwhile, involves the torso, shoulders, and head turning side to side with the arm movements, and the ribs remaining in place. 2 Milly’s move is also said to be performed at a significantly quicker tempo. "The works simply are not substantially similar," said Epic.

How the judge responds to the argument will likely affect the other lawsuits. While The Carlton Dance has been removed from Forza Horizon 4, Ribeiro has admitted he “stole” the move, though he lawyer says he didn’t use the word in the legal sense. In the case of Orange Shirt Kid, his Orange Justice dance, originally called ‘The Random,’ was submitted to Epic Games as part of a competition. It didn’t win, but fans petitioned for its inclusion in Fortnite.

Permalink to story.

 

Uncle Al

Posts: 7,207   +5,591
Their lawyers got it right. A simple review of the copy write laws do not mention such coverage and while you can file suite for just about anything in this country, a clear thinking & non corruptible judge would have to rule against it ...... of course this is the USA ......
 

gusticles41

Posts: 503   +600
I'm not a fan of Epic monetizing popular dance moves, but this one is just ever so different enough that I'm sure they'll avoid being sued regardless of this statement:

“No one can own a dance step,”

Maybe not, but it's a slimy practice to take someone's dance they made up and implement it into your game to make money off 12 year olds.
 

ForgottenLegion

Posts: 456   +450
I'm not a fan of Epic monetizing popular dance moves, but this one is just ever so different enough that I'm sure they'll avoid being sued regardless of this statement:

“No one can own a dance step,”

Maybe not, but it's a slimy practice to take someone's dance they made up and implement it into your game to make money off 12 year olds.
Morals go out the window when you're taking in so much cash you don't know what to do with it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gusticles41

MilwaukeeMike

Posts: 3,211   +1,455
I'm not a fan of Epic monetizing popular dance moves, but this one is just ever so different enough that I'm sure they'll avoid being sued regardless of this statement:

“No one can own a dance step,”

Maybe not, but it's a slimy practice to take someone's dance they made up and implement it into your game to make money off 12 year olds.
True - just because you can, doesn't mean you should.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gusticles41

Teko03

Posts: 613   +326
Shocked to see comments supporting EPIC, considering they're raking in cash using dance moves created and popularized by the individuals mentioned. It's pathetic and beyond shady. Swipe it is the same as Milly Rock.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gusticles41