Monkey can't sue to copyright protect selfie, court rules

Monkey can't sue to copyright protect selfie, court rules

Monkey can't sue to copyright protect selfie, court rules

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sued on behalf of the monkey in 2015, seeking financial control of the photographs for the benefit of the animal.

While traveling through Indonesia in 2011, Slater set a camera on a tripod with a wired remote at the Sulawesi nature reserve in an attempt to encourage the primates to take photos of themselves.

Naruto is a free-living crested macaque who snapped perfectly framed selfies in 2011 that would make even the Kardashians proud. But in that same 2004 case, the court also ruled that acts of Congress only apply to humans unless Congress says otherwise.

British photographer David Slater published Naruto's photos in a 2014 book, setting off a ridiculous debate over animals rights.

The problem for Naruto, however, was that copyright law did not 'expressly authorize animals to file copyright infringement suits, ' Ninth Circuit Judge Carlos Bea said in the ruling. The court ordered PETA to pay Slater's legal fees, for both the appeal and the original trial in district court.

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Following oral arguments, Slater and PETA announced in September that they had reached a settlement under which Slater agreed to donate 25 percent of any future revenue from the images to charities dedicated to protecting crested macaques in Indonesia.

The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals took up the case last July, with the San Francisco panel asking PETA's attorney why the group should represent the monkey's interests.

The court also found that PETA couldn't represent Naruto as a "next friend" because it couldn't establish it had a relationship with the monkey allowing to serve as a legal guardian in a court proceeding and because current law didn't animals such legal representation.

Kerr said Monday the 9th Circuit ruling would not affect the settlement.

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