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What source can I cite about our legal freedom to fly in the USA?
1275 12 2015-4-12
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paul
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United States
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I had a "heated debate" with a member of my family last night.  He told me he saw a drone flying over his house, which he didn't like.  He asserted very confidently that it's illegal.  He also claimed he had a legal right to shoot it down (as long as the projectile is a beanbag) and that if it landed on his property, (even after he shoots it) he gets to keep it.

He honestly believed all of the above to be true.  I was surprised.  He's a nice guy otherwise.  He must have heard all this garbage from someone he trusts.

It's all crap of course.  So I challenged him to cite any applicable law supporting his assertions.  He browsed his phone for about 30 minutes and found nothing, although he did find something about when a person has "a reasonable expectation of privacy and video or pictures are taken specifically with the intent to invade said privacy."  (paraphrasing words to that effect)

I may or may not agree with him that it's unethical to fly in certain situations, but this debate was about the laws.  I'm happy that he found nothing, but I'd like to go a step further, finding something in writing myself, expressly stating that he's incorrect.  (Not just a lack of sources supporting his assertions.)

Any sources you peeps can direct me to?


2015-4-12
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jliddil
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United States
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Specific to photography:
http://www.krages.com/phoright.htm

https://www.faa.gov/uas/
2015-4-12
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Lee321
lvl.1

United States
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I don't know why people hate these things so much.  Seems like every time there is a news article about a small drone (most of which include a picture of a Phantom) at least 75% of the comments are from people wanting to shoot it, shoot the owner, beat the owner with a bat, defecate on it or some other disgusting action.  I'm sorry to hear your relative shares that attitude.  We've all got one.  My brother-in-law worries about "chemtrails."      
2015-4-12
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Kengineer
lvl.3

United States
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Ask him if he shoots at airplanes, they have much better cameras.
2015-4-12
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HermosaDrones
Second Officer
Flight distance : 2501906 ft
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United States
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live to fly another day...
2015-4-12
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cob666
lvl.2

Canada
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According to his logic he should have the right to shoot down a news helicopter and keep it if it crashes in his yard.

Odds are pretty good that your family member will be committing an actual crime if they shoot down a quadcopter instead of the imaginary crime the quadcopter pilot is committing.
2015-4-12
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oakspi
Second Officer

United States
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I guess armed drones are in the future so the drone can defend itself...
2015-4-12
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oakspi
Second Officer

United States
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Try this one at home
2015-4-12
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tonyray955
lvl.4

United States
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If the drone was over his house all the camera would see is his roof.
2015-4-12
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paul
lvl.3

United States
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cob666@gmail.co Posted at 2015-4-13 06:38
According to his logic he should have the right to shoot down a news helicopter and keep it if it cr ...

Similarly, I told him: "If I crash my car through your living room, you can hold me responsible for all injuries and property damage, but you don't get a free car."
2015-4-12
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paul
lvl.3

United States
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Lee321 Posted at 2015-4-13 05:05
I don't know why people hate these things so much.  Seems like every time there is a news article ab ...

I asked him if he felt he was "caught in the act of being interesting".

There seems to be this idea that we spend our time "peeping" on people.  I never saw the South Park episode, maybe that didn't help the image.   

People aren't as interesting as they seem to think they are.  There's no abundance of "sunbathers" out there.  (Although there are a few FAKED YouTube videos of drones finding them.)  If I look over a neighborhood, I'm looking at the "area", not someone's house.  It's the same as I see from an airplane.  

It's what Google publishes with their maps.

Also by his logic, using a ladder that enables the user to see over a fence is illegal, even if you're just cleaning your gutters.

It takes too much focus to actually fly and protect your $1000 investment to spy on anyone.
2015-4-12
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aladrian
lvl.2
Netherlands
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Heh.. funny story.

I buy my first large Camera Quad.  (DJI Phantom 2).. After a month of research and some years ago being into Radio control.  I started with a small quad in the house, and decided my first flights would be out of town in a big empty field  away from everything.. I park on a pullout beside the road and and proceed to discover how easy it is to fly the Phantom in GPS mode.

2x 9 minute flights.. my first but for 20 seconds I my back-yard.

The police had been given my license plate number and were looking for me after someone decided I must be an evil drone terrorist...

They knocked on my house door, but missed me.. and caught up to me the next day at the same spot.  They took my ID down and seemed pretty interested in the FPV, etc as I brought it back in from half a km out...  Interested in a good way.. But they made the point that people were flying places that they were not supposed to and would "keep and eye on me" now that they had my info..

Some kind of record?.. First "drone" flight and the cops were after me, even though it was as safe as possible.

Al...
2015-4-13
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Friffy1
lvl.3

United States
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aladrian@gmail. Posted at 2015-4-14 05:29
Heh.. funny story.

I buy my first large Camera Quad.  (DJI Phantom 2).. After a month of research a ...

As far as "drones" go, they don't mind them much here in Pennsylvania.  There are, of course, laws against "criminal surveillance."  There's a law that says that drones can't be used for hunting purposes.  And I recall reading something about a law that says something like a drone may not interfere with another person's activities.  And there are the federal laws and regulations to follow.

So, really, all common sense stuff.  Don't spy on people.  And don't mess with people.  Nothing of the "Oh my God! It's a.... d.. d.. d.. DRONE!" craziness that has swept the US.
2015-4-14
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