Monkey Takes Selfie, PETA Says He Owns the Copyright

Discussion in '[H]ard|OCP Front Page News' started by Megalith, Jul 15, 2017.

  1. Megalith

    Megalith 24-bit/48kHz Staff Member

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    In 2015, PETA sued British nature photographer David Slater and San Francisco-based self-publishing company Blurb for using a monkey’s selfies in the book “Wildlife Personalities.” That case continued this week as a federal appeals court heard arguments on whether an animal can hold a copyright to photos: attorneys for the animal rights organization insist that Naruto, the free-living crested macaque, is accustomed to cameras and clearly deserves copyright protection. “Where does it end? If a monkey can sue for copyright infringement, what else can a monkey do?”

    Andrew Dhuey, attorney for British nature photographer David Slater, said “monkey see, monkey sue” is not good law under any federal act. Naruto is a free-living crested macaque who snapped perfectly framed selfies in 2011 that would make even the Kardashians proud. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sued Slater and the San Francisco-based self-publishing company Blurb, which published a book called “Wildlife Personalities” that includes the monkey selfies, for copyright infringement. It sought a court order in 2015 allowing it to administer proceeds from the photos taken in an Indonesian wildlife reserve to benefit the monkey.
     
  2. leathco016

    leathco016 [H]Lite

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    Reasons like this are the reason why PETA needs sued by the federal government. Frivilous lawsuits and criminal acts galore from these guys. Also, its fishy that PETA headquarters owns a huge walk in freezer, which normally only has two uses: the storage of meat or the storage of cadavers. Or the fact that PETA beleives that any drug derived from animal research shouldn't be used, although she is a diabetic and has no problem taking insulin injections.
     
  3. Chas

    Chas [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yeah. They've basically bankrupted this poor guy with ongoing suits on the theory of "Them with the deepest pockets wins."
     
  4. DukenukemX

    DukenukemX 2[H]4U

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    I think some people need to understand that human like things like copyright doesn't apply to non-humans. That includes the animals life vs humans life. Yes, that means when it comes to harambe vs little boy, we will always choose the little boys life. At least until animals develop human level of intelligence.

     
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  5. Ripskin

    Ripskin [H]ard|Gawd

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    Just set up a sign that has a disclaimer so if a monkey or whatever uses the camera the user relinquishes all rights and ownership to the images to the owner of the camera. If the current level of evolved Monkey's can care about copywrite then they can read the disclaimer and walk away.
     
  6. SecretStash

    SecretStash Limp Gawd

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    Grunt if you wave all claims
     
  7. Kalabalana

    Kalabalana [H]ard|Gawd

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    Incredibly naive, well done PETA - this is certainly the method of promoting your cause that you should pursue. /sarcasm
     
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  8. Exercate

    Exercate [H]Lite

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    Ah, this is how it all begins.... The Planet of the Apes is upon us.
     
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  9. LurkerLito

    LurkerLito [H]ard|Gawd

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    I agree the monkey owns it, but only if he can claim it in a court of law by his own words or sign language when directly asked by the judge. :)

    All you have to do is bring the monkey to court and have the judge ask "Did you ask PETA to represent you?" to the monkey and when it doesn't answer the case is over because that means PETA is not his representative. :)
     
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  10. nilepez

    nilepez [H]ardForum Junkie

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    From other articles I've read (didn't read this specific one), the monkey cannot be assigned a copyright. And frankly, this is just stupid. The monkey doesn't want, nor does it need a copyright. I'm all for animal rights, but this is ridiculous. PETA is the worst animal rights organization
     
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  11. STR

    STR Gawd

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    1. Monkeys are not legal persons, they are wildlife, a part of nature.
    2. Their actions are acts of nature, no different from water eroding a scenic canyon.
    3. Acts of nature are not copyrightable.
    4. Nature is not a legal person either. You cannot sue on behalf of it because it is not something that can be legally harmed.
    5. You can sue people (and legal persons like incorporated companies and organizations) for violating laws on the environment.
    6. The transgression is against the law which exists on behalf of all of us. Environmental suits exist based on the idea that we (the people) are harmed when our environment is damaged. The environment is akin to property, not a stakeholder unto itself.
    7. There was no environmental damage here, no people were harmed.
    8. In order to have standing to sue, you must prove you were harmed.

    QED: Since no person was harmed PETA doesn't have standing to sue.

    Without standing, this suit should (and likely will be) thrown out due to lack of standing or proof of harm. Possibly with prejudice, which makes it harder to refile or appeal.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2017
  12. Chaos Machine

    Chaos Machine Limp Gawd

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    I would argue that the photographer owns the copyright since it was his equipment used and he facilitated the taking of the pictures.
     
  13. Syntax_Error

    Syntax_Error [H]Lite

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    Rather ironic, considering the word "ethical" is part of their organization's title. It's like all these entitled, self-righteous assholes just sit together and figure out schemes to troll their fellow humans using animals as their tools.
     
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  14. SomeoneElse

    SomeoneElse Gawd

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    So my question is if he wins this lawsuit who get the damages? PETA? Why do they get anything at all? They aren't the owners of the copyright so therefore aren't entitled to anything.
    If that's the case i want to sue Google on behalf of Apple and Sue Apple of behalf of Samsung. Just so I can get the whatever it is that im seeking because I brought the case to court. (thats what this looks like to me, just my opinion).
     
  15. 5icko

    5icko Gawd

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    Liberalism is a mental disorder.
     
  16. STR

    STR Gawd

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    Nope. It's not who owns the camera, it's who pushes the shutter button. Owning a camera by itself doesn't create anything. Pushing the shutter is the act of creating the intellectual property.
     
  17. Ripskin

    Ripskin [H]ard|Gawd

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    I agree 100%. I'm just saying then if stupid lawsuits like this come up they can say we posted a disclaimer and the waved their right to the photos.
     
  18. HeadRusch

    HeadRusch Gawd

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    I'm starting an organization called PWEOP......I believe we should all wake UP as a people and accept that both Animals AND Plants have *FEELS*.....and it would be morally wrong to "consume" either of those life forms, which means we...as a higher-order species, must do the smart-thinking thing: We must only feed on ourselves. People Who Eat Other People will be an organization of high-thinking individuals who have come to realize that cannibalization is the only smart way. Think about it, preying upon our own will ensure an end to Obesity! Physical Strengh and Endurance levels will go through the roof, the law of nature will begin to weed-out many of the problems we have as a people. Populations will shrink, resources will begin to naturally renew as demand starts to fall off! Further, entire new industries will emerge to cater to the unique flavors and cooking techniques and equipment which will be required to both capture and consume, well, people! Everyone will have a job, because you know...one day..boom, "Shit..Fred didn't make it out of the Subway this morning....I think he was brought-down by a pack of Asian kids...call HR we need meat in that seat, and subway should be good for awhile cuz they've fed".....

    We'll also eat Monkeys....if you're smart enough to litigate, you're smart enough to barbecue. Dolphins, Bees also potential appetizers.
     
  19. collegeboy69us

    collegeboy69us [H]ardness Supreme

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    Frivolous lawsuit indeed... and I feel sorry for the dude having to put up with this shit, and is probably in the poor house now because of it.

    Our legal and justice system is pretty much a joke at this point, and there will come a day when some innocent person is put through the ringer because of this PETA-type shit who will snap and go on a shooting spree against peta lawyers or whoever is at the top, and when that day comes I'll laughand think... well they did have it coming. We need a "loser pays" system in this country so bad, it would cut down on so many of the shit box bogus law suits our system has to deal with.

    Bankrupting a guy because a monkey picked up a camera and had no idea what he was doing... their stupidity knows no bounds.
     
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  20. rudy

    rudy [H]ardness Supreme

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    Lets just say that the monkey did have the copyright.... To me the monkey cannot sue for copyright infringement because as of yet no one can communicate with any non human well enough to establish that they would like to sue or be represented by a lawyer. I am not a lawyer so correct me if I am wrong but I could not go out and just file a lawsuit on behalf of collegeboy69us without his consent and desire to do so, but that is exactly what happened here. The only close thing I am aware of is a class action lawsuit. Can you do that with a class of 1? Don't you have to alert all participants and ask them in words they can understand if they want to opt out of the suit?
     
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  21. nilepez

    nilepez [H]ardForum Junkie

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    This is correct, but I'm not sure how it should go in this case...should it be public domain or does the photographer own it? What if it was a camera that was simply trigger by motion? Who owns the copyright then?

    I feel bad for this guy, because I think he could have just said he took the picture and more than likely nobody would have known any better.
     
  22. nilepez

    nilepez [H]ardForum Junkie

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    That doesn't fly. Bands try doing this to concert photographers and while anyone working for a decent publication gets it waived, almost everyone believes that you can't steal a photographers copyright. The issue here is that the monkey can't own a copyright. All they can reasonably litigate (I suspect, as I'm not an attorney), is whether or not the image is owned by the photographer that owned the camera or if it's in the public domain.

    I'd assign it to the photographer, but if the image had been taken by a 5 year-old kid, it'd be the kids.
     
  23. B00nie

    B00nie [H]ardness Supreme

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    Everyone taking selfies is a monkey anyway.
     
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  24. BloodyIron

    BloodyIron [H]ard|Gawd

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    Did PETA get permission from the monkey to represent them in court?
     
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  25. arestavo

    arestavo [H]ard|Gawd

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    Dude. We're animals.

    Yes, we've been put in charge of this planet (by God's grace or by our intelligence (take your pick)), yet we've still got all of those mammalian instincts. Sure we can suppress them, yet they're still there.

    One remove from wild animals, all of us!

    The diadem that you're holding up is really civilization. We're civilized, they're not. And we love to point to other cultures as being uncivilized even within our own species.
     
  26. Master_shake_

    Master_shake_ 2[H]4U

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    Doesn't PETA have animals to euthanize?

    Oh ya... Muh ethics.
     
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  27. Private_Ops

    Private_Ops [H]ard|Gawd

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    If there was a change in the definition of "hypocrite", it would just say "PETA".

    Further revisions could add the words "Goverment" and "(big) Media" as well.
     
  28. ChoGGi

    ChoGGi Gawd

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    Don't you normally need a model release to be signed if you use an image (containing a person) for commercial purposes? Why isn't PETA going after all the people taking pictures of other animals? Oh right, because the judge would tell them to fuck off...

    so PETA, maybe you should stick with euthanizing animals, you seem to be pretty good at that.
    I would also like to see more half naked celebrities.
     
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  29. STR

    STR Gawd

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    The photographer already lost his case. The monkey pressed the shutter. It took the picture and since "it" was a monkey the photo was an act of nature. Act of nature means no one can own the IP. Since no one can own it, the photo has been declared in the public domain. Which is why [H] and everyone else is free to use it when reporting on this case (or for any reason).

    This is actually the 2nd case involving this photo. PETA is taking the precedent from the previous case (monkey was found to have taken the photo) and trying to say the monkey owns the photo. There is currently a movement within the larger Animal Rights effort to get courts to recognize primates as legal persons. Legal personhood is the same thing as corporate personhood. It doesn't mean you're a human (a natural person in legal parlance), it just means you have certain rights (to own property and to bring a suit to court, for example) which are usually less broad than what a natural person enjoys.

    The problem for PETA and others who bring similar cases is that there is precisely zero legal grounds to give primates personhood. Only humans, and organizations of humans (corporate personhood again) have that standing under the law and the US Constitution (and (AFAIK) all 50 state constitutions/charters and those of home ruled territories and commonwealths (Puerto Rico, USVI, etc.). There's no basis for it. But they keep bringing these suits in the hopes of finding the right argument to the right set of circumstances that the right judge will find for. Given enough time, they just might.

    However, any victory will be short lived. Any win will be overturned on appeal, or narrowed so that it's clear the animal is not a person. Because, ultimately, courts are not where our laws come from. Courts do not make new laws or create new rights. They apply logic to the laws they are given by extended them to the case at hand. Animals are, essentially, property under the law. You can't torture your pet or kill endangered species because those are human actions which are illegal. Not because the animal has inherent rights to exist or not be tortured.

    There are plenty of cases where pet owners blew off their pet's heads with a gun. Because it wasn't torture (animal felt no pain) such people are not guilty of animal cruelty (torture) laws. It's perfectly legal to destroy your own property. I'd also like to point out that what is legal isn't necessarily what is right. I'd like to think we can all agree it's pretty messed up to shoot Fido for no reason (STR goes and hugs his dogs. Then gives them treats).
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2017
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  30. funkydmunky

    funkydmunky [H]ard|Gawd

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    Captive monkeys should sue for unlawful containment. Live among themselves and learn to use guns. It could even spark a movie franchise!
     
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  31. P4B

    P4B Limp Gawd

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    cant wait for peta to have to pay for everyones legal bills
     
  32. Chaos Machine

    Chaos Machine Limp Gawd

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    I know it is for people, but when there is no person that can claim the copyright for pushing the shutter, it should default to the person who set up the shot. I am just thinking from a moral standpoint, it shouldn't be public domain as the guy had a financial stake in setting up the photo shoot.
     
  33. P4B

    P4B Limp Gawd

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    of a stolen camera
     
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  34. shansoft

    shansoft [H]ardness Supreme

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    Does this have anything to do with liberalism? this just outright stupidity to me.
     
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  35. Krenum

    Krenum [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Monkey see monkey do.
     
  36. Rob94hawk

    Rob94hawk [H]ard|Gawd

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  37. Randall Stephens

    Randall Stephens n00bie

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    Peta can't sue. They have no standing.
     
  38. Master_shake_

    Master_shake_ 2[H]4U

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    People Exposing Tits and Asses.
     
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  39. jedijeb13

    jedijeb13 Limp Gawd

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    And I always thought PETA stood for People for the Eating of Tasty Animals, man was I wrong.
     
  40. Master_shake_

    Master_shake_ 2[H]4U

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    being wrong never looked so good though.