WBEZ | primates http://www.wbez.org/tags/primates Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Federal Judge Says Monkey Can't Own Copyright to His Selfie http://www.wbez.org/news/federal-judge-says-monkey-cant-own-copyright-his-selfie-114403 <p><div id="storytext"><p>The legal saga of the monkey selfie continues: On Wednesday, a federal judge said the macaque who famously snapped a picture of himself cannot be declared the owner of the image&#39;s copyright.</p><p>At least, until Congress says otherwise.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/macaca_nigra_self-portrait_custom-9e834e877413ee5cb1da909a7a528c80db9beed9-s400-c85.jpg" style="text-align: center; height: 745px; width: 540px;" title="A macaque took this self-portrait in 2011 with a camera owned by photographer David Slater. PETA says the monkey owns the copyright; Slater says he does. The U.S. Copyright Office says no one can, and a federal judge has now said it would be up to Congress to extend copyright privileges to animals. (David Slater via Wikimedia Commons)" /></p><p>There&#39;s &quot;no indication&quot; that the Copyright Act extends to animals, U.S. District Judge William Orrick wrote in a tentative opinion issued Wednesday in federal court in San Francisco.</p><p>&quot;I&#39;m not the person to weigh into this. This is an issue for Congress and the president,&quot; Orrick said from the bench,<a href="http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2016/01/judge-says-monkey-cannot-own-copyright-to-famous-selfies/">according to Ars Technica</a>. &quot;If they think animals should have the right of copyright they&#39;re free, I think, under the Constitution, to do that.&quot;</p><p>The photo in question was taken in 2011 on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, with a camera owned by nature photographer David Slater. But Slater didn&#39;t trip the shutter: the macaque did.</p><div id="con462251137" previewtitle="Related NPR Stories"><h3><strong>The Story So Far</strong></h3><div id="res462251136"><div><a data-metrics="{&quot;category&quot;:&quot;Story to Story&quot;,&quot;action&quot;:&quot;Click Internal Link&quot;,&quot;label&quot;:&quot;http:\/\/www.npr.org\/sections\/thetwo-way\/2014\/08\/07\/338668652\/if-a-monkey-takes-a-photo-who-owns-the-copyright&quot;}" href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2014/08/07/338668652/if-a-monkey-takes-a-photo-who-owns-the-copyright">If A Monkey Takes A Photo, Who Owns The Copyright?</a>&nbsp;Aug. 7, 2014</div></div><div id="res462251251"><div><a data-metrics="{&quot;category&quot;:&quot;Story to Story&quot;,&quot;action&quot;:&quot;Click Internal Link&quot;,&quot;label&quot;:&quot;http:\/\/www.npr.org\/sections\/thetwo-way\/2014\/08\/22\/342419651\/who-owns-a-monkey-s-selfie-no-one-can-u-s-says&quot;}" href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2014/08/22/342419651/who-owns-a-monkey-s-selfie-no-one-can-u-s-says">No One Can Own A Monkey&#39;s Selfie, U.S. Says</a>Aug. 22, 2014</div></div><div id="res462251504"><div><a data-metrics="{&quot;category&quot;:&quot;Story to Story&quot;,&quot;action&quot;:&quot;Click Internal Link&quot;,&quot;label&quot;:&quot;http:\/\/www.npr.org\/sections\/13.7\/2015\/09\/23\/442860957\/should-a-monkey-own-a-copyright&quot;}" href="http://www.npr.org/sections/13.7/2015/09/23/442860957/should-a-monkey-own-a-copyright">Monkey Selfie Lawsuit A Long Shot &mdash; But A Worthy One</a>&nbsp;Sept. 23, 2015</div></div></div><p>As a result, some outlets &mdash; including Wikipedia &mdash; maintain that no one owns the copyright to the photo, and have been using it as an image&nbsp;<a href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Macaca#/media/File:Macaca_nigra_self-portrait.jpg">in the public domain</a>.</p><p>The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals filed a lawsuit last year on behalf of the monkey &mdash; which it calls Naruto &mdash; arguing that in fact Naruto owns the copyright (which PETA is offering to administer on the monkey&#39;s behalf).</p><p>The U.S. Copyright Office, since the dispute began, has specifically listed &quot;a photograph taken by a monkey&quot; as an example of an item that&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2014/08/22/342419651/who-owns-a-monkey-s-selfie-no-one-can-u-s-says">cannot be copyrighted</a>.</p><p>Slater, meanwhile, has a British copyright for the photo, which he says should be honored worldwide, The Associated Press reports.</p><p>He asked the court to dismiss PETA&#39;s claim.</p><p>&quot;The only pertinent fact in this case is that Plaintiff is a monkey suing for copyright infringement,&quot; Slater&#39;s lawyer wrote. &quot;[I]magining a monkey as the copyright &#39;author&#39; in Title 17 of the United States Code is a farcical journey Dr. Seuss might have written.&quot;</p><div id="res462255380"><iframe height="555" scrolling="no" src="http://apps.npr.org/documents/document.html?embed=true&amp;id=2678125-Motion-to-Dismiss-Naruto-Case" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border-width: 0px; border-style: initial; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; font-size: inherit; line-height: inherit; font-family: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;" width="100%"></iframe></div><p>(The whole motion, filed on behalf of Slater and his company, is an entertaining read. &quot;Monkey see, monkey sue.&quot;)</p><p>&quot;If the humans purporting to act on Plaintiff&#39;s behalf wish for copyright to be among the areas of law where non-human animals have standing, they should make that dubious case to Congress &mdash; not the federal courts,&quot; the lawyer continued.</p><p>And Judge Orrick appears to agree &mdash; not necessarily with the Seussian nature of the claim, but with the argument that it&#39;s up to Congress to make this call.</p><p>Naruto&#39;s supporters aren&#39;t giving up, the AP reports:</p><blockquote><div><p><em>&quot;Jeff Kerr, general counsel for PETA, said the organization will continue fighting for the monkey&#39;s rights.</em></p><p><em>&quot; &#39;Despite this setback, legal history was made today because we argued to a federal court why Naruto should be the owner of the copyright rather than been seen as a piece of property himself,&#39; Kerr said. &#39;This case is also exposing the hypocrisy of those who exploit animals for their own gain.&#39; &quot;</em></p><p>&nbsp;</p></div></blockquote></div><p><a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/01/07/462245189/federal-judge-says-monkey-cant-own-copyright-to-his-selfie?ft=nprml&amp;f=462245189" target="_blank"><em>&mdash; via NPR</em></a></p></p> Thu, 07 Jan 2016 10:17:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/federal-judge-says-monkey-cant-own-copyright-his-selfie-114403 Through primates, the evolutionary origins of war http://www.wbez.org/content/through-primates-evolutionary-origins-war <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//story/photo/2011-September/2011-09-08/Exhilerated and Exhausted.jpg" alt="" /><p><p style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/28772707?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0&amp;color=b30000" webkitallowfullscreen="" width="601" frameborder="0" height="338"></iframe></p><p>Today WBEZ launches a new monthly series called Art/Work, where we talk with contemporary visual artists exhibiting in Chicago about the inspiration and perspiration behind their creative endeavors. We begin with <a href="http://www.alisonruttan.com/">Alison Ruttan</a>, a multimedia artist based in Oak Park, Ill., who works largely in photography and video.</p><p>Ruttan likes to emphasize that she is an artist, not a scientist, despite her fascination with scientific inquiry. She jokes that she was raised to be an "artist anthropologist" by her social scientist parents who moved her to a new school almost every year. “I would have to figure out how to not get picked on,” she said about her childhood. “I was really interested in trying to understand what the rules were about behavior - and trying to fit in.”</p><p>Now, fascinated as she is by human behavior, much of her work is preoccupied with exploring what makes us uniquely human, versus those elements of our behavior which can be traced to our primate ancestors.</p><p>Ruttan’s previous projects include a series on primates <a href="http://www.alisonruttan.com/art.php?group=0&amp;item=4">photographed in human settings</a>, and an investigation of bonobos living in captivity who may be <a href="http://www.alisonruttan.com/art.php?group=0&amp;item=1">cultivating individual hairstyles</a>. But her most ambitious project to date is a photo series based on the field work of legendary primatologist Jane Goodall.</p><p>Goodall spent decades in Tanzania starting in the 1960s, observing the behavior of humanity’s closest primate relatives: chimpanzees.&nbsp; Among the things she witnessed was a brutal "war" between two groups of chimpanzees that had previously lived together as a single, peaceful community. After splitting in two, one group of chimpanzees attacked and decimated what Ruttan called “their former friends.”</p><p>For her series <em>The Four Year War at Gombe</em>, Ruttan cast untrained actors (and one performance artist) to re-enact scenes from Goodall’s work. Shot in a patch of woods in Oak Park and River Forest, Ill. the resulting photographs are reminiscent of the kind of dark, 19th century illustrations that might accompany classic children's fairy tales. The woods are dark and foreboding, the photos, haunting. Her images also take aesthetic cues from horror films shot with hand-held cameras, like <em>The Blair Witch Project,</em> and have the kind of size and presence one finds in monumental landscape painting or the stained glass windows of a cathedral.&nbsp;You can see Ruttan’s work, and hear her describe her process, in the video above.</p><p><em>Selections from </em>The Four Year War at Gombe <em>are on display at the Museum of Contemporary Photography at Columbia College in Chicago through Oct. 16<sup>th</sup>. Ruttan gives an artist talk tonight at 4 p.m., followed by a reception from 5 to 7 p.m. </em></p></p> Thu, 08 Sep 2011 16:21:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/content/through-primates-evolutionary-origins-war Clever Apes #13: Origin stories http://www.wbez.org/blog/clever-apes/2011-05-24/clever-apes-13-origin-stories-86999 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//blog/photo/2011-May/2011-05-24/Kipunji.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><img alt="The only known specimen of rungwecebus kipunji is locked away at the Field Museu" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-May/2011-05-25/Kipunji 1.jpg" style="width: 595px; height: 335px;" title="The only known specimen of rungwecebus kipunji is locked away at the Field Museum. "></p><p>Say the original <a href="http://www.ushistory.org/declaration/document/">Declaration of Independence </a>burned up. No problem, you might think – we have pictures of it. But then say someone discovered that a word had been scratched out and replaced. Without the original document to examine, we might never know what that discarded word was … or how close we came to being a nation founded on the right to pursue “life, liberty and the pursuit of waffles.”</p><p><audio class="mejs mediaelement-formatter-identified-1332483509-1" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/sites/default/files/Clever_Apes_13_Origin_Stories.mp3">&nbsp;</audio></p><p>There’s power in the original – whether it’s a document, the mold of a famous sculpture, or the standard of a common measurement, like <a href="http://www.bipm.org/en/practical_info/faq/faqs_mass.html">the kilogram.</a></p><p>Scientists who name a new species keep an artifact of its origin. It’s called the holotype – the standard by which a new species (or genus or subspecies) is designated. It turns out there are a whole bunch of these <a href="http://fieldmuseum.org/explore/our-collections/mammal-collection">locked away in secure cases in Chicago</a> – more than 500 just for mammals. It’s like a tiny National Archives of biology.</p><p>On this round of <a href="http://www.wbez.org/cleverapes">Clever Apes, </a>we consider origins, from the concrete example of a <a href="http://www.wcs.org/saving-wildlife/small-primates/kipunji.aspx">monkey holotype</a>, to the murk of the beginnings of consciousness. On that point, we check in with Malcolm MacIver of Northwestern, whom we visited last year to hear a choir of singing fish he helped create. Those fish inspired his theory on the origins of consciousness, which he first laid out in <a href="http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/sciencenotfiction/2011/03/14/why-did-consciousness-evolve-and-how-can-we-modify-it/">several blog posts.</a> He dates it back to our emergence from the primordial oceans, when all of a sudden we could begin to see much farther. That meant more time to plan, to consider possible futures. And that, by at least one formulation, is the essence of consciousness.</p><p>As always, subscribe to the Clever Apes&nbsp;<a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/CleverApesPodcast" target="_blank" title="http://feeds.feedburner.com/CleverApesPodcast">podcast</a>, follow us on&nbsp;<a href="http://twitter.com/#%21/cleverapes" target="_blank" title="http://twitter.com/#!/cleverapes">Twitter</a>, find us on&nbsp;<a href="http://www.facebook.com/pages/Clever-Apes-on-WBEZ/118246851551412" target="_blank" title="http://www.facebook.com/pages/Clever-Apes-on-WBEZ/118246851551412">Facebook</a>.</p><p><img alt="Alas, poor Kipunj: Bill Stanley and the skull of a new genus he helped identify." class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/blog/insert-image/2011-May/2011-05-25/Stanley and skull 1.jpg" title="Alas, poor Kipunj: Bill Stanley and the skull of a new genus he helped identify." width="600" height="337"></p></p> Wed, 25 May 2011 04:28:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/clever-apes/2011-05-24/clever-apes-13-origin-stories-86999