Get your gavels ready. Canon USA has filed a pair of lawsuits against a handful of online photography retailers in an attempt to halt the sales of grey market gear – equipment that is legal and often cheaper to purchase, but isn’t covered by Canon’s warranty. [Read more…]
Just when you thought a copyright battle about a monkey’s selfie couldn’t get any more bizarre, Photographer David Slater responded to PETA’s lawsuit with yet another surprise move in this ongoing saga.
Rather than argue in favor of the photographer’s ownership of the copyright, defense papers claim PETA can’t prove Naruto, the monkey on whose behalf it’s suing, is the monkey seen in the photos.
A District Court in California recently said that the act of threatening to arrest a person solely for recording police officers is a clear violation of the First Amendment.
The summary judgment was given in Barich v. City of Cotati, where a civilian who often records city officials claimed the chief of police violated his First Amendment rights by threatening to arrest him if he recorded the chief.
The court also said the police chief is not entitled to qualified immunity, which would shield him from liability for the violation of an individual’s federal constitutional rights, as it’s clear that the public has the right to record government officials in public places.
Several months ago we reported that William Merideth of Kentucky was arrested and charged with first degree wanton endangerment and criminal mischief after firing his neighbor’s drone out of the sky with a shotgun.
Based on the fact that the drone was shot over Merideth’s property and that eyewitnesses said the drone was flying low, a Bullitt County District Court judge decided to dismiss all charges against him.
So can anyone go shooting drones from now on?
Just three days after California Governor rejected several drone-related bills, the Los Angeles Times reports that Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation intended to protect the rich and famous from the prying eyes of the paparazzi.
Bill AB 856 expands privacy protections by changing the definition of a “physical invasion of privacy” to include a drone invading the airspace above private property in order to record video, sound or capture photographs.
Violators of the new law will face fines ranging from $5,000 to $50,000.
The company is being accused of conducting 65 unauthorized commercial flights, which involved aerial photography, over Chicago and New York’s highly restricted Class B airspace.
“These operations were illegal and not without risk,” the FAA said, and the company now has 30 days to respond to the agency.
Madelyn Milton, a doctoral student from Minneapolis, was out last year with her friends when an argument with a taxi driver over the fare led to police being called.
The young women decided to record police sergeant Tyrone Barze, and when Madelyn stood up for her right to record him she ended “lying unconscious and bleeding in the street”, according to the lawsuit.
Despite this being the fourth lawsuit against Barze, Minneapolis police union president described him as an “excellent” officer.
The police union chief’s response to the lawsuit was even more infuriating.
Pro tip: if you decide to rob a bank, don’t celebrate it by posting photos of the money on social media.
It seems pretty obvious, but a couple from Ohio did just that several days after robbing a bank near Columbus.
A tip through Central Ohio Crime Stoppers eventually led police to the couple, John Mogan and Ashley Duboe, and photos they posted on Facebook holding wads of money.
An Illinois woman, who was arrested and charges were filed against her after she recorded police officers on her friend’s property without their consent, decided to fight back and stand up for her rights.
Ironically enough the officers themselves were not given permission to enter the property in the first place. Additionally, the Illinois Eavesdropping Act under which the woman was arrested had already been ruled unconstitutional.
PINAC reports that after filing a lawsuit against the city of Naperville, a suburb of Chicago, and the police officers involved, the woman accepted a $117,500 settlement.
In the settlement agreement the city insists that the agreement is not an admission that the police “acted wrongfully”, but the videos below paint a different picture.
Remember the macaque monkey who snapped a few selfies that went wildly viral back in 2011?
While photographer David Slater and Wikipedia argued about whether or not the photographer owned the copyrights, and the U.S. Copyright Office also chimed in, there’s now a third party involved – with an entirely new claim.
PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) has filed a suit in a San Francisco federal court claiming that the monkey should be recognized as the legal copyright owner, and requested permission to administer the proceeds for the benefit of the monkey and his friends.