Monkey Selfie Photographer David Slater: US Copyright Office Guidelines Misleading - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Monkey Selfie Photographer David Slater: US Copyright Office Guidelines Misleading

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Wildlife photographer David Slater not only persists in his copyright battle with Wikipedia but also re-focuses the spotlight onto the endangered monkeys, by giving away free canvas prints of the famous monkey selfie. With every order, $1.70 will be donated to aid conservation efforts.

August 29, 2014

Gloucestershire, UK – August 29th, 2014 /PressCable/

Wildlife photographer David J Slater is refusing to take the latest guidelines issued by the US Copyright Office lying down.

“I have read the draft release from the US Copyright Office. It does not weaken my case for copyright of the monkey images,” said Slater.

The US Copyright Office (USCO) has recently weighed in on the monkey-Wikipedia wrangle with the latest revision of their regulations. Seemingly alluding to the current raging debate over the monkey selfie, the guidelines specifically assert that “a photo taken by a monkey” cannot be copyrighted.

Still, the British photographer believes he has a robust case to plead.

“The intention and creativity behind a work cannot be discounted. Photographs such as the famous winning Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2008 snow leopard shot from Steve Winter are made employing an animal to press a pad or trip a beam. Even though the animals set the camera off without consciously knowing, this doesn’t mean no creative effort goes into the picture from the human,” said Slater. “It is an insult to photographers for anyone to make legal claims that the entity pressing the button must either be the copyright owner or it is public domain – it just isn’t that simple”.

While many news reports have described the circumstances surrounding the photo as chance, Slater maintains the photo was “deliberately planned”.

The photo in question was taken in 2011, when British wildlife photographer Slater was touring the monkey’s native habitat in Sulawesi, Indonesia. During his trip, he shadowed the crested black macaques and became accepted as one of the troop. When the monkeys became intrigued with his equipment, Slater conceived of the idea to set it up for them to take pictures of themselves.

“The news reports have been rehashing the same uninformed backstory behind the photo. The selfie was not just happenstance. After the monkeys ran off with my camera, I decided to take advantage of their interest and intelligence, and set the shot up for an intended up-close portrait. All the monkey did was press a button,” said Slater.

Nevertheless, Slater is refocusing the limelight onto the monkeys. Together with photo products company, Picanova, Slater is giving away free 12?8” canvas prints of the famous selfie. For every order made, $1.70 will be donated to the Sulawesi Crested Black Macaques Conservation Program. From today until November 30, the canvas prints can be redeemed on:

The voucher code “#MONKEYSELFIE” may also be used to redeem a personalized canvas print.

In the meantime, although the US Copyright Office’s new guidelines appear to back Wikipedia’s stance, discussions surrounding options for Slater to assert his ownership has been on-going.

While Slater stops just shy of confirming any legal action, it appears to be that the legal battle remains on course.

“I have been instructed, by my legal team, to remain tight lipped and not to discuss details of any law suit, however rest assured I have only just started and this case is not going to go away,” said Slater.

To join the conversation and keep tabs on the latest news, tag your posts with: #monkeyselfie

Contact Info:
Name: David J. Slater
Organization: DJS Photography
Phone: +44 7999950697
Address: Fairways Avenue, Coleford, Gloucestershire, UK, GL16 8RP

ReleaseID: 61187

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