On Monday, April 23, 2018, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a trial court’s dismissal of copyright infringement claims brought by a monkey who took selfies that went viral in 2011. The court ruled animals do not have standing to file copyright infringement lawsuits. While Naruto, the monkey, did not personally file the suit, the action was filed by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Inc. (PETA) claiming “next-friend standing for the monkey. The court, however, stated that PETA failed to allege any facts establishing the required significant relationship and, in any case, an animal cannot be represented by a “next friend.” The full opinion can be viewed here.
(published by Judith Keene)