Monkey selfie copyright issue resolved by U.S. Copyright Office

    The dispute between the photographer and Wikimedia , the subject of which are monkey selfie (the animal stole a camera and took a selfie), received a curious continuation. The discussion became so active that officials, namely the US Copyright Office, took up the issue.

    And the solution, after a detailed examination of the problem, became unambiguous : “Works made by nature, animals or plants” cannot be protected by copyright.

    The story itself began back in 2011, when photographer David Slater, specializing in wildlife, decided to photograph a rare species of monkey from Indonesia. The photographer began to install equipment, but one of the monkeys decided to help the person. Without thinking twice, the animal stole the camera, and began to press the shutter button again and again. Among hundreds of shots, there are almost perfect animal selfies.

    The photo was uploaded to the Wikimedia Commons photo hosting, after which the photographer asked to delete this photo, declaring their rights to it. Representatives of Wikimedia (a non-profit organization that serves a dozen Wiki projects, including Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons) refused to delete the photo, indicating that the photographer does not own the rights to the selfie photo. The photographer began to dispute this opinion, claiming that he had lost thousands of dollars of "lost profits" as deductions. The photographer even told the Air Force that the monkey was his assistant.

    After that, a heated discussion arose on the Web and on the pages of paper magazines and newspapers about the rights of the photographer and the right of third-party organizations and individuals to use such photographs.

    Now the decision has been made in the United States, so the photographer will have to be content with this decision, and Wikimedia (and other organizations / resources) will be able to calmly use the photos, which are sponsored by natural forces / objects. The Copyright Office did not comment on this particular case, but one must think that the decision was initiated by this particular case.

    Via latimes

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