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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk
Thread started 06 Aug 2014 (Wednesday) 10:24
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Wikipedia refuses to delete photo as 'monkey owns it'

 
losangelino
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Aug 06, 2014 10:24 |  #1

http://www.telegraph.c​o.uk ...to-as-monkey-owns-it.htmlexternal link



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battletone
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Aug 06, 2014 10:55 |  #2

Another reason I refuse to donate each time Wikipedia pops up and asks.


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Christopher ­ Steven ­ b
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Aug 06, 2014 12:00 |  #3

Help me out, guys--I must be missing something here. I can actually appreciate the argument that the copyright belongs with the monkey. It's at least arguable. But if we accept that the monkey owns the copyright then how did wikipedia go about securing licensing ? Or how do they argue it's then public domain ?



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OhLook
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Aug 06, 2014 12:03 |  #4

Christopher Steven b wrote in post #17080082external link
Help me out, guys--I must be missing something here. I can actually appreciate the argument that the copyright belongs with the monkey. It's at least arguable. But if we accept that the monkey owns the copyright then how did wikipedia go about securing licensing ? Or how do they argue it's then public domain ?

An excellent point. They can't argue that the monkey agreed to share the rights when she uploaded her selfie to Wikipedia.


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nathancarter
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Aug 06, 2014 12:21 |  #5

They argue that it's public domain because non-human entities can't own copyright.

Third paragraph from the bottom:

In its report Wikimedia said that it "does not agree" that the photographer owns the copyright, but also that US law means that "non-human authors" do not have the right to automatic copyright of any photographs that they take.


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battletone
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Aug 06, 2014 12:56 |  #6

How is this any different than Briged Berlin who has a book full of breast imprints of herself, but also those of her friends? It's considered her art. Would this imply the act of doing what you are directed to do (or in the case of the monkey, allowed to be coaxed to do), somehow implies creative ownership?


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kjonnnn
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Aug 06, 2014 12:59 |  #7

Photographers, like everyone else, have to stop believing every outrage passed along on the net, and just investigate slightly to find the truth.

Wikipedia is NOT saying that the monkey owns the copyright. In fact, they say "This file is in public domain, because as the work of a nonhuman animal, it has no human author in whom copyright is vested."

But since the monkey pressed the shutter the photographer does not have the copyright either. Owning the camera doesn't pass the copyright along to him. Just because the other entity isnt human, doesnt mean copyright gets transferred to the camera owner. Photographers love to follow the letter of the law when it comes to copyright, ... whoever presses the shutter has the copyright. Wikipedia is following that letter of the law. Therefore since the photographer DIDNT press the shutter, he does not have copyright, and therefore does not have STANDING to ask that the photo be removed, because it is in the public domain.

Its an interesting case, but its pretty simple.

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battletone
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Aug 06, 2014 13:06 |  #8

kjonnnn wrote in post #17080200external link
Photographers, like everyone else, have to stop believing every outrage passed along on the net, and just investigate slightly to find the truth.

Wikipedia is NOT saying that the monkey owns the copyright. In fact, they say "This file is in public domain, because as the work of a nonhuman animal, it has no human author in whom copyright is vested."

But since the monkey pressed the shutter the photographer does not have the copyright either. Owning the camera doesn't pass the copyright along to him. Just because the other entity isnt human, doesnt mean copyright gets transferred to the camera owner. Photographers love to follow the letter of the law when it comes to copyright, ... whoever presses the shutter has the copyright. Wikipedia is following that letter of the law. Therefore since the photographer DIDNT press the shutter, he does not have copyright, and therefore does not have STANDING to ask that the photo be removed, because it is in the public domain.

Its an interesting case, but its pretty simple.

LESSON: Don't post photos your pets take.

I would argue this is an extension of "mixed media", and a "derivative work", and there for the "art" belongs to the artist.

But in seriousness, this is stupid. By turning the camera on and letting the monkey have it, you are the creator of the art. That's like saying you only own the right to the first image of a series of photos with timed shutter release since you only pressed it once and a computer triggered the rest.


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losangelino
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Aug 06, 2014 13:08 |  #9

I think he has an argument to make. The monkey is NOT a person therefore could not own the copyright. Therefore by him setting it up and "manipulating" a non person it is his. Not much different than if he pushed a remote trigger himself. A trigger, even an intervalometer is a non person, like the monkey but it does not mean the photo becomes public domain because it was triggered by a Non person. It is not public domain.



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gjl711
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Aug 06, 2014 13:09 |  #10

I have to remember to charge those couples who ask if I can take their picture with their camera as technically I own the copyright. Dang, I have been giving away my hard work for free way too long. :):)


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sirquack
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Aug 06, 2014 13:42 |  #11

gjl711, you made the point I was just about to make. The concept of copyright is just stupid in the interpretation that Wiki made. I have taken many photos of passers by who asked me to use their camera to take a photo of them. By Wiki's reasoning, if one of those shots were to get published and make money, I could then lay claim to the copyright because I had technically taken the photo even if all I did was push the button. And as stated by losangelino, I use an intervalometer quite often on my camera. If it were to somehow catch a news worthy or great event am I not able to claim copyright since it was my camera that took the photo and not me.
As an amateur, I would be willing to chip into the fund for the photographer to take this one to court just to get the case heard and adjudicated. It sounds like it would be in photographers, in general's, best interest to have this case decided.


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gjl711
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Aug 06, 2014 13:51 |  #12

sirquack wrote in post #17080292external link
gjl711, you made the point I was just about to make. The concept of copyright is just stupid in the interpretation that Wiki made. I have taken many photos of passers by who asked me to use their camera to take a photo of them. By Wiki's reasoning, if one of those shots were to get published and make money, I could then lay claim to the copyright because I had technically taken the photo even if all I did was push the button....

I don't think it's Wiki's interpretation, it the copyright law itself. There was a thread a while ago discussing it and I believe the conclusion was that the copyright does not go to the owner of the camera but it really does belong to the photographer, the one who pushes the button.

To play devils advocate, suppose you rent a camera and take an award winning photo. Would the copyright belong to the camera owner?


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sirquack
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Aug 06, 2014 14:15 |  #13

I am suggesting the image is owned by the person who has the effort into creating it. If I take my camera, hand it to my son and he makes a ton of changes and hands it back to me and I take an award winning photo with no changes to the settings, I would say we both share in the image creation. If I take the same camera, make my own changes and have him push the button because I am no able to do so while appearing in the image, then I believe I "created" the image. He just pushed the button.
Same holds true of the walk by shot. I take a photo with the couples camera of them in front of a location. I ultimately give them the camera back and they own the "image". I only served as the remote trigger.
In this particular photographers case, he provided the camera, went to the environment, yes the monkey created the image by pushing the button, but that in itself is not creating the image. The photog took the "RAW" image, processed it and put it out for view. None of that would have happened if it were not for him. That is where I believe the copyright lies with him. While I am not a lawyer, I think that is a common sense approach to the situation. But I don't know if there is any case law where there is standing on the topic.


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benji25
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Aug 06, 2014 14:36 |  #14

sirquack wrote in post #17080339external link
I am suggesting the image is owned by the person who has the effort into creating it. If I take my camera, hand it to my son and he makes a ton of changes and hands it back to me and I take an award winning photo with no changes to the settings, I would say we both share in the image creation. If I take the same camera, make my own changes and have him push the button because I am no able to do so while appearing in the image, then I believe I "created" the image. He just pushed the button.
Same holds true of the walk by shot. I take a photo with the couples camera of them in front of a location. I ultimately give them the camera back and they own the "image". I only served as the remote trigger.
In this particular photographers case, he provided the camera, went to the environment, yes the monkey created the image by pushing the button, but that in itself is not creating the image. The photog took the "RAW" image, processed it and put it out for view. None of that would have happened if it were not for him. That is where I believe the copyright lies with him. While I am not a lawyer, I think that is a common sense approach to the situation. But I don't know if there is any case law where there is standing on the topic.

So where does Canon get a share of the copyright? The airline that flew him there? The guide that came with him? The lens manufacturer? His employer who he bought the camera with his salary?

All of these things were pivotal to that photo. Without them it simply couldn't have happened. Do they get a share of the copyright?


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dkizzle
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Aug 06, 2014 15:29 |  #15

Correct me if I am wrong but a monkey takes better pictures than the photographer? :)

“For every 10,000 images I take, one makes money that keeps me going. And that was one of those images. It was like a year of work, really.”

He takes 10,000 images, this is the best one...BUT it was not taken by him and instead it was done by a monkey. I guess being a nature photographer is so easy, even a monkey can do it. :)


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Wikipedia refuses to delete photo as 'monkey owns it'
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