Backpack Kid becomes the latest star to sue video games Fortnite

Backpack Kid, 16, becomes second dancer to sue Fortnite for using his Flossing dance move without asking for permission or paying him

  • The Backpack Kid, whose real name is Russell Horning, is suing the company Epic Games which owns Fortnite
  • His mother filed a lawsuit on his behalf on Monday seeking unspecified damages
  • They say it is unfair for Fortnite to use his move, The Floss, in its game
  • The video game included the Floss as a one-time special ‘Emote’ reward but players cannot buy it 
  • Horning is also suing NBA 2k which includes it as a player celebration dance 
  • Alfonso Ribeiro is suing both games for using his ‘Carlton’ dance
  • Rapper 2 Milly has also taken action against them for not using his Milly Rock  

The Backpack Kid, who shot to fame with his quirky dance move the ‘Floss’, has become the latest person to sue video games Fortnite and NBA 2k for allegedly using his move without seeking his permission or paying him royalties. 

The 16-year-old from Georgia whose real name is Russell Horning, shot to fame last year after performing with Katy Perry on Saturday Night Live. 

He had already won internet notoriety by posting videos of himself performing the dance on Instagram. 

On Monday, his mother Anetta sued Epic Games and Take Two Interactive, which own the games Fortnite and NBA 2K, on his behalf because he is under 18.

The lawsuit claims that both use the dance unfairly and profit off of it.  

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The Backpack Kid, whose real name is Russell Horning, shot to fame last year with his unusual dance move, the Floss. He is seen performing it on Saturday Night Live with Katy Perry 

The video game Fortnite allowed players to pick the ‘Floss’ as a reward Emote for a limited time, something Horning says is unfair 

All three plaintiffs say they have not yet obtained copyright of their moves but that they are in the process of doing so. 

Dancing is protected under US Copyright law so long as the dance is original and it has been recorded as the copyright holder’s own in a video. 

In Fortnite, players can buy what are called Emotes or win them as rewards once they advance to a high enough level. 

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The Floss emote cannot be bought in the game’s store. It was only ever available as a reward in the Season 2 Battle Royale.  

The lawsuit is one of three that has been recently filed against the two brands. 

Rapper 2 Milly claims they have ripped off his move, the Milly Rock.

And actor Alfonso Ribeiro has also recently taken action against the two companies claiming they are unfairly profiting from his ‘Carlton dance’ that he made famous when starring in The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.

Actor Alfonso Ribeiro coined the ‘Carlton’ dance on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. He is suing the video games for including it in their programs 

In Fortnite, the dance which closely resembles the ‘Carlton’ is called ‘the Fresh’ and can be bought for 800 V Bucks. 1,000 V Bucks is $9.99 

Both Epic Games and Take-Two Entertainment declined to comment on Tuesday. 

Representatives for each company told ‘We do not comment on ongoing litigation.’ 

Earlier this month, before Ribeiro had filed his lawsuit, Horning took part in a video where he judged some Fortnite players’ attempts at his dance.

Chance the Rapper previously slammed Fortnite for not including the music that some of the dances were created to.

‘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,’ he tweeted in July.  

Rapper 2 Milly has also sued the games claiming they use his move, the Milly Rock, and pass it off as the Swipe It Emote (shown right)

NBA 2k, which is owned by Take Two Interactive, is also being sued by all three men. They say players in that game use their dances as celebrations but that they never agreed to it and are not getting paid for it 

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