Wikimedia, the organisation behind the online encyclopedia Wikipedia, is defending its decision to keep a monkey’s selfie in the public domain.
The man who owns the camera used by the primate claims that he has copyright over the image, but the Wikimedia Foundation says that its rules over animal rights are crystal clear.
Wikimedia spokesperson Katherine Maher said: “The law on this is very clear – only humans can hold copyright, animals can’t. And although Mr Slater did have his camera and he was in Indonesia, the monkey took the photograph and so this is an issue of public domain.”
But the British nature photographer David Slater argues the rights belong to him as the monkey used his camera when he was in Indonesia three years ago tracking the critically endangered Macaca nigra.
“I’ve already talked to Wikipedia over the internet. They never contacted me to find any facts. The problem is they rely on newspaper articles, embellishments by various newspapers,quotes that are made up on my behalf, and this is their evidence,” said Slater.
Slater claims this is no monkey business and says he has lost up to 10,000 euros in income because of Wikimedia’s refusal to take the picture down.