Monkey Trivia:Monkey Selfie Ends In A Win For Photographer

In 2008, photographer David Slater encountered a troop of crested black macaques while taking pictures at an Indonesian…

In 2008, photographer David Slater encountered a troop of crested black macaques while taking pictures at an Indonesian wildlife park. While he concentrated on shooing some curious monkeys, others snuck to his camera, which was on a tripod, and started to click on the shutter.


Monkey Trivia:Monkey Selfie Ends In A Win For Photographer
Monkey Trivia:Monkey Selfie Ends In A Win For Photographer

The monkeys took hundreds of pictures, some of which included Slater. However, the most popular was a selfie taken by a monkey that pressed on the shutter. What followed was a bizarre copyright battle between Slater and the monkey, which was named Naruto.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) claimed that Naruto owned the copyright to the picture. Slater insisted that he owned the copyright and not Naruto. In 2015, PETA filed a copyright lawsuit on behalf of Naruto. In 2017, PETA agreed to dump the lawsuit on the condition that Slater gave them 25 percent of the royalties he received from the images.

However, in 2018, a court stopped PETA from settling the lawsuit because it wanted to pass judgment that would allow judges to decide over similar incidents in the future. The court ruled that animals cannot file or own copyrights. This effectively gave copyright ownership to Slater.[


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