In case you missed it | Bear photo takes another twist

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Just when the whole bear falling from a tree photo controversy seemed to be settling down, a new claim has emerged. You may recall that CU Independent photographer Andy Duann snapped a cute photo of a bear falling out of a tree after it was tranquilized by authorities. The photo was so cute that it went viral. As a result of the photo becoming something that people actually seemed to like, the Daily Camera decided to buy it for itself for $250 from Duann. As could have been predicted, the CU Independent that Duann actually shoots for thought that it owned the photo, only to later discover that it had forgotten to get a contract from the photographer concerning the work he provided to the Independent, CU’s online newspaper. So Duann now claims to be the owner of the photo. But hold on. Let’s not forget the victim.

As of Wednesday morning, the bear had retained Frank “The strong arm” Azar, and has filed suit. The bear claims that her civil rights were violated when she was drugged and then photographed in a compromising “super bear” pose while incapacitated. The suit also claims that the bear was further humiliated after millions of viewers saw the photo, which was indiscriminately distributed across the Internet. The bear’s attorney has described the case as “extremely complicated” because so many people at various corporate-owned publications need the photo in order to drive the page views that, more often than not these days, determine their annual bonuses. Azar says that he expects still more claims of ownership to be filed because many newspapers are only now hearing that the bear photo went viral, and while they don’t know what that means, their consultants have told them that they should try really hard to own viral things as often as possible so they can all become paperless papers someday like the Independent.


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