Wow. So remember the photo taken by the monkey and Techdirt’s subsequent musings about who owns the copyright a photo taken by a monkey? Today Techdirt is reporting that Caters News Agency sent a takedown notice to Techdirt asking them to remove the monkey’s photos. Totally not making this up.
We were a bit surprised to receive a notice on Monday from Caters News, telling us they represented David Slater with respect to the syndication of those photos, and asking us to take down the photos. The notice was not a DMCA takedown notice. It doesn’t even mention copyright, though that seems like the only basis upon which they would make such a takedown request. And, to be clear, it was not in the least bit threatening. There is no legal language and no threat at all in the note.
When asked for clarification by Techdirt, a representative from Caters replied:
Michael, regardless of the issue of who does and doesn’t own the copyright — it is 100% clear that the copyright owner is not yourself. You have blatantly ‘lifted’ these photographs from somewhere — I presume the Daily Mail online. On the presumption that you do not like to encourage copyright theft (regardless of who owns it) then please remove the photographs.
Onionesque. Please someone interview the monkey about his/her views on this.