- The Washington Times - Friday, August 22, 2014

Apparently, the monkey has his rights. The U.S. Copyright Office has refused to register the copyright of a selfie snapped by a monkey, bringing an end to a legal battle between the Wikimedia Foundation and a British photographer.

“The Office will not register works produced by nature, animals or plants,” the U.S. copyright authority said, The Register reported. “Likewise, the Office cannot register a work purportedly created by divine or supernatural beings, although the Office may register a work where the application or the deposit copy(its) state that the work was inspired by a divine spirit.”

The Office specifically mentions the famous monkey picture.

Nature photographer David Slater said the monkey stole his camera in 2011 and when he got it back, he noticed that there was a picture of the monkey. The image went viral online, but subsequently became the root of a legal battle over Mr. Slater’s rights to the photo — and the accompanying royalties.

The Copyright Office said that if a human didn’t take the picture, it can’t be copyrighted.