If a monkey takes a selfie, who owns the image?

(Editor’s Note: WTOP chose to purchase the right to use the photo taken by photographer David Slater.)

WASHINGTON — A monkey took a selfie three years ago and the Internet could barely contain itself.

Now, the ownership of said selfie is the topic of a heated battle between British photographer David Slater and Wikimedia Commons, the Washington Post reports.

Slater claims he owns the picture because the black macaque snapped its own photo while curiously inspecting Slater’s equipment during a shoot in Indonesia in 2011.

But Wikimedia insists the image is fair game because no one technically owns the copyright. A human did not take the photo, a monkey did.

Slater says that is just bananas. He asked the company to remove the image in 2012, but Wikimedia refused.

“Monkeys don’t own copyrights,” Wikimedia Foundation’s Chief Communications Officer Katherine Maher told the Post.

“What we found is that U.S. copyright law says that works that originate from a non-human source can’t claim copyright.”

And tell us what you think: Does the monkey own the selfie?

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