Media Law Prof Blog

Editor: Christine A. Corcos
Louisiana State Univ.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Guadamuz @technollama on The Monkey Selfie, Copyright, Originality, and Internet Jurisdiction

Andres Guadamuz, University of Sussex, is publishing The Monkey Selfie: Copyright Lessons for Originality in Photographs and Internet Jurisdiction in volume 5 of the Internet Policy Review (2016). Here is the abstract.

In 2011, a macaque monkey used a camera belonging to British photographer David Slater in Indonesia to take a self-portrait. The selfie picture became famous worldwide after it was published in the British media. In 2014 Slater sent a removal request to Wikimedia Commons, which indicated that the picture was in the public domain because it had been taken by the monkey and animals cannot own copyright works. While most of the legal analysis so far has been centred around US law, this article takes a completely different approach. Re-assessing jurisdictional issues, I examine the case from a UK and European perspective. The monkey selfie is of importance to internet policy: it has a lot to teach us about online jurisdiction. Under current originality rules, David Slater has a good copyright claim for ownership of the picture.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

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