Friday, August 8, 2014

SAT awesome giveaway - Shark Girl DVD - and wildlife selfies

Madison Stewart doing what she enjoys most: fraternising with a shark.

Last month we interviewed the inspirational Madison Stewart, aka Shark Girl, about her passion for a group of animals many people fear (you can read it here).

Thanks to ABC Television we have not one, not two, but three copies of “Shark Girl: One Girl’s PassionateFight to Save the Creatures She Loves”.

As Madison has said, one of the biggest threats to sharks is our fear of them. She is trying to help sharks by, among other things, educating people about them and trying to blast some irrational fears along the way.

So, to win a copy of this awesome DVD (which is valued at $19.99 and includes a swag of special features and behind-the-scenes footage), SAT wants a photo documenting you helping out a non-human or non-humans. 

It could be direct – like pulling a horse out of a ditch – or indirect, like teaching kids the best way to approach strange dogs or indeed campaigning for better treatment of sharks (though it might be a bit weird if Madison enters).

The best three win a DVD and internet fame. It’s that simple.  All you need to do is email the image and a caption to SAT and include your name, postal address and (just in case) phone number. JPEGS preferred and higher res (eg around 1-2MB) are better. Sorry folks, only Aussie entries are eligible to win (but overseas readers are still welcome to send photos!).

SEND IN ALL ENTRIES BY AUGUST 21. Winners will be announced in the last week of August. If you've never entered anything before, now is your opportunity.


Here’s an interesting newsitem: a wildlife photographer’s camera is “borrowed” by a stunning crested black macaque on location in Indonesia. During this period the macaque takes hundreds of “selfies” (philosophical question: does one need to know one is taking a SELFIE, or indeed does one need a sense of self, for it to be a selfie?). (More flippant question: can you imagine a black crested macaque singing “But first, let me take a selfie?” [thank you to Flora for pointing out thisinteresting piece of social commentry by the hopefully ironically named "Chainsmokers"]).

He edited the photo and published it with a few outlets, along with the story. Along came WikimediaCommons, absorbing the photo in its copyright free collection, on the grounds that the monkey, not the man, pushed the shutter and – presumably – has no enforceable copyright therefore the image can be used freely.

This raises a number of interesting issues. What if a child did the same thing? Would we suggest that the child had copyright and put the money away in a trust fund? Does the photographer have claim to the rights for setting up the conditions for taking the photo? (Is it all about who pushed a button? What about photographer’s assistants? Are they monkeys?).

One thing is unquestionable…this is a cracking photo and probably the best selfie I have ever seen, with the possible exception of my colleague Steve’s cat’s “selfies” of her bottom (see here).