To provide a centralized location to discuss and comment on the government(s) use of same.
Article in New Scientist is kinda dated (Feb 2012) but has some rather useful information…
Civilian drones to fill the skies after law shake-up
Law changes mean uncrewed aerial vehicles aren’t just for the military any more – civilian uses are taking off, too
Editorial: “High time to welcome the friendly drones”
THE hobbyist was testing the camera on board his small uncrewed aerial vehicle (UAV), when he spotted it: a creek in Dallas, Texas, running red with blood.
He’d captured a picture of a stream of animal blood flowing north away from the Columbia Packing Company’s meat-processing facility. Acting on the visual evidence, investigators monitored the plant before raiding it last month. The company may now face criminal charges from local, state and federal authorities for polluting city waterways with a gory mix of pig’s blood and toxic chemicals.
Such a story may crop up more often as UAVs fall in price and become simpler to use. What is traditionally thought of as a military technology is about to change the lives of private citizens as well as big businesses.
For the moment, the law stands in the way. The US Federal Aviation Administration allows for recreational use of remote-controlled air vehicles, but the Columbia Packing case blurs the line because the UAV became a surveillance tool. Commercial use is also illegal – last week real estate agents in Los Angeles, California, were ordered to stop using helicopter drones to shoot aerial movies of properties they are selling. “Although the FAA allows hobbyists to fly model airplanes for recreational purposes, that authority does not extend to operators flying unmanned aircraft for business purposes,” the Air Division of the Los Angeles police department reminded the California Association of Realtors.
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