A sad tale involving some serious Monkey business and a guy called Slater

I am not going to monkey around I am going to get straight to the point. A nature photographer named David Slater had his camera stolen and the thief accidentally took a photo of a monkey with it while it was in his possession. The photographer retrieved his camera and found the above image on it. “Why I’ll be a monkey’s Uncle,” he exclaimed, ” that is a great photo.” He liked it so much he included it in his book of nature photography and that is when the monkey business started and he found himself with a monkey on his back.

David Slater’s problems started years ago when his copyright of the monkey photo on his camera was challenged by animal rights activists ( PETA) who claimed to be representing the monkey who stole his camera and took a selfie with it. YES REALLY.

A man is reportedly bankrupt after being dragged through court by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), which claims to be representing a monkey whose selfie said man is accused of stealing.
According to VICE’s Motherboard, this all began in 2014 when the photographer, David Slater, got into scuffle with Wikimedia over ownership of the monkey’s selfie.

…the monkey had run off with his camera and taken a ‘selfie.’”

Motherboard goes on to state that, when Wikimedia Commons hosted the picture on its site, Slater sent a copyright notice, claiming they had used his picture without permission.

“Wikimedia considered it, and then declined to take it down,” the outlet states. “Slater wasn’t the author, they said. If anything, the monkey—who pointed the camera and snapped the photo—was. But monkeys can’t own copyrights, so the photo is in the public domain.”

The story went viral but promptly fizzled when Slater and Wikimedia went their own ways with no lawsuits being filed.

Not long after, however, Motherboard reports that Slater decided to use the monkey’s selfie in a self-published book of wildlife photos.
PETA subsequently sued both Slater and the self-publishing company, Blurb Inc., on behalf of the monkey, claiming the animal owned the photograph and deserved all proceeds from the self-published book.

“And so started the long, drawn out, distressing, and mostly downright ludicrous legal battle over who owns the ‘monkey selfie’ image,” writes IFLScience.

The blog adds that “PETA argues that the monkey that took the photo of itself by pressing the button knew what it was doing and so has artistic ownership of the photo.”

Indeed, in a blog post on its website, PETA states, “if this lawsuit succeeds, it will be the first time that a nonhuman animal is declared the owner of property (the copyright of the ‘monkey selfie’), rather than being declared a piece of property himself or herself. It will also be the first time that a right is extended to a nonhuman animal beyond just the mere basic necessities of food, shelter, water, and veterinary care. In our view, it is high time.”

-Milo

While PETA is having their fun establishing a monkey’s right to copyright Slater has been bankrupted while fighting this ridiculous battle. It is yet another example of the legal system being used for an improper purpose and yet another example of legal Jihad. It is appalling that PETA has ruined this man just because they wanted to make legal history. Powerful activist groups with plenty of money are doing this more and more often these days. Individuals can not stand up to them because the cost of defending themselves is too high. There is something seriously wrong with a legal system that allows this kind of thing to happen. These PETA activists are heartless. They have destroyed a human being for the sake of a monkey who doesn’t know what copyright is and who has no use for money. If the monkey was a man he would have had no legal right to the photo because the camera was stolen. Perhaps Slater should have charged the monkey with theft!

 


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