Remember David Slater, the photographer whose camera was hijacked by a monkey and used for a series of selfies that went viral on the Internet? The photographer has spent years fighting a copyright battle in court over the photos, and now he’s broke.
The Guardian reports that the 52-year-old photographer has run out of funds and is now considering coaching tennis and walking dogs as ways to earn a living.
After the original monkey selfie photos went viral on the Web, a takedown request was sent on Slater’s behalf to a publication that shared the images. This sparked a huge debate on whether or not Slater even owned the copyright to the photos, since technically the monkey was the one who shot the images.
Wikipedia took a stand for the monkey, arguing that the photo is in the public domain since it was captured by the monkey and not Slater. PETA then filed a lawsuit against Slater on the monkey’s behalf to have the copyright assigned to the monkey.
The US Copyright Office stated in 2014 that it can’t assign copyright to animals, and a judge ruled in 2016 that the monkey can’t own copyright to the famous selfie.
Since then, the case has gotten bumped up to a US federal appeals court, which heard arguments this week, but Slater didn’t have the funds to attend the hearing in San Francisco and was forced to watch a livestream from his home in the UK.
Link to the rest at PetaPixel