Monkey Business
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September 25, 2017
By Kirsten Murphy Photography
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I am fascinated by photo rights and ownership (think Philip Lorca Dicorcia). In the case of PETA suing photographer David Slater on the behalf of a macaque monkey's selfie  and then settling- I wonder who is actually protecting who?

Slater set up a camera in a jungle in Indonesia in 2011. A monkey named Naruto took a selfie and the photog made a lot of money from the smiling mug but PETA claimed the animal's rights had been violated and attempted to sue in behalf of the monkey. 

However, two sides dropped the case in September 2017. As a compromise, Slater settled for keeping 75% of the undisclosed (?hundreds of) thousand of money he'd already made from the selfie. The other 25% went to charities dedicated to protecting crested macaques in Indonesia. I wonder if that charity is PETA? I wonder if the two parties created a false sense of animosity knowing it would raise the issue of animal rights? Which it has.

"PETA and David Slater agree that this case raises important, cutting-edge issues about expanding legal rights for non-human animals, a goal that they both support, and they will continue their respective work to achieve this goal," Slater and PETA said in a joint statement.

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