Recently, Wikimedia (the entity behind Wikipedia) has refused repeated requests from professional photographer David Slater to remove from one of his most famous photos from its royalty free photo collection website. The photo at issue is a “monkey selfie.” Slater claims he owns the copyright to the photo and Wikimedia is using it without his permission. Bananas! claimed Wikimedia; a recent report reveals that Wikimedia editors decided that Mr Slater has no claim on the image as the monkey itself took the picture.
In what must be the wildest of luck, Slater was visiting a North Sulawesi national park in Indonesia when a black macaque grabbed an errant camera and took an amazing array of self-portraits. These amazing pictures ran in an July 5 article about the incident in the UK’s Daily Mail. Two of the four pictures featured in the article included a copyright notice indicating Caters News Agency (Slater’s photo agency) as the owner.
Can Canters News Agency or Mr. Slater own the copyright in the photos taken by this highly intelligent and obviously photogenic? In order for this to be the case, the monkey would have to be an author under the Copyright Act. And if a monkey can be considered an author, he or she would have to assign or transfer the copyright in the photos to Caters News Agency.
Continue Reading Copyright Ownership Claim Of Pictures Taken By Wild Ape is Monkey Business