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IDEA: Mavic "Insurance" Sponsored by Mavic Users
347 10 2017-10-17
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randy.sauder
First Officer
Flight distance : 872572 ft
Canada
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I've an idea, not sure if this has been done anywhere for any product before but please provide your feedback.  If we as a usergroup can make this work I think this could be a fantastic thing.  My thought is that if this idea shows merit, we as a usergroup can formulate the details/rules etc to jumpstart this....
[color=#c3a79d !important]Background: Every Mavic operator is faced with the risk that at some point, their Mavic may suffer damage or loss due to many reasons including operator error.  Their are several options available which include :
[color=#c3a79d !important]a). DJI Warranty
[color=#c3a79d !important]b). DJI Care
[color=#c3a79d !important]c). Personal 3rd Party Insurance

[color=#c3a79d !important]If you are like me, you have (a) and (b) and may have difficulty finding (c) in your area or it is way too expensive.  Having been a contributor to this group for a while, I've noticed that Warranty service does not appear to qualify for most people (even when it should perhaps) and from my review of the forums, it appears that DJI Care also is not as fool-proof as advertised. Compounding this is the fact that many do not have access to affordable 3rd party insurance (such as State Farm etc).  



Concept: Every Mavic user registered in this forum qualifies for 'Mavic Community Goodwill Drone Insurance' and depending on their circumstance, may recieve a payout upto the full amount of their Mavic should they suffer a loss.  This 'insurance' would be funded entirely by the Mavic user group (details below).  Any user submitting a 'claim' would have their details reviewed by a panel of usergroup SMEs or 'Subject Matter Experts' whereby they would be responsible to determine if a claim is valid, and to what extent the user would be supported by this fund.  

"The Fund": For several reasons including legal, this is not true 'insurance' but a 'Goodwill Fund'.  
     The fund coud be generated in many ways:
     1. By subscription @ say $1/month
     2. By a signup fee of $10/yr
     3.  A combination of the above plus maybe a 'deductable amount' that is 'prorated' based on your 'Flight Miles (m)' as reported by DJI. Example, for every 20,000m, $1 deductable (so $20 deductable on 200,000 flight meters).  Just an idea!
     4.  Support by DJI.  Idea: DJI perhaps contributes a % of your existing 'DJI Points' towards the fund.  Maybe 10%?.  This would encourage a 'more you contribute to the user forum, the more you can get covered by the fund'...

Other considerations:
1. The amount of the fund and the decision process to paying out to any user would need to be 100% transparent.  All details would be on the forum.
2. The fund would never payout if the cause is related to a warranty or a DJI Care.
3. Their needs to be some way for this idea to supplement 'DJI Care' (not replace it).  I am thinking that this fund would be mostly useful for obviously for those that either do not have DJI Care or could not claim DJI Care because their Mavic was not recoverable.
4. Clear and easy rules/decison making process so this is as fair as possible.  There needs to be some sort of 'ranking/scoring' system for each claim so that the 'Fund Moderators' can objectively classify claims based on some scale to prevent a situation where their may be too many claims for the fund to handle (initially).  Perhaps the fund pays out to the top claims firstly, then as funds are regenerated, the next highest claim (by score, not by amount) is paid out.
4. Many more!!


The goal for this idea is to maximize the Mavic community's enjoyment of their drones and provide some full or limited relief to Mavic operators that suffer a loss to their drone.


APPRECIATE YOUR FEEDBACK!  




The goal for this idea is to maximize the Mavic community's enjoyment of their drones and provide some full or limited relief to Mavic operators that suffer a loss to their drone.

2017-10-17
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MDJ
lvl.2
United Kingdom
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A couple of questions about this:

1) Under which legal or regulatory environment would you propose to offer this service?  I'm not sure about other countries but in the UK "insurance" is a regulated financial service and it is illegal to offer such services for payment without being registered.  I think the main reason for this is to avoid incidences of fraud.  Other countries may have similar rules.

2)  Who is going to decide if a claim is a valid claim or not.  Do you make reinbursement regardless of pilot behaviour?  If so, if pilots will be paid from the insurance regardless of the situation, then there is no incentive for pilots to be careful and avoid incidents.  As a result, your claim rate is likely to be very high resulting in the fund for reimburement running short.

3) If that situation arises (fund running short) then what do you do?  In essence you now have a contract with people to provide the service at a fixed rate.  You can't really go back and ask them to top up the fund so that reimbursments can continue.  

4) A follow on question would be, if the fund does go into deficit, who legally is going to be on the hook for this?

There are all sorts of other questions of detail that could be asked.  In my opinion, most of them are not easily solved.  In other words, it's a nice idea but my opinion is that it wouldn't really work.  A background in financial services in a previous life pretty much confirms this to me as well.  There's a reason why drone insurance is hard to get in most markets.  In the hard world of business cases a drone insurance business is a difficult model on which to build a sustainable business.  Those that do offer it, like State Farm in the US, are building it on the back of their already existing and extensive insurance business.  
2017-10-18
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QuadKid
Captain
Flight distance : 482349 ft
United States
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I will stick with State Farm, as a matter of fact I went in to insure my new P4P about a week ago (already had a policy for my Mavic $75 p/year USD ) so I went and took out another policy for the P4P, paid the additional $75. Got a call from the agent yesterday saying they are going to cancel and refund me the $75 I spent on the secondary policy as the P4P will be insured under my Mavic Policy with full replacement cost on each drone, $0 deductible for the initial rate of $75. How cool is that, 2 birds, 1 policy with the Mavic insured for $1,200 & the P4P for $1,600 no questions asked other than if it is stolen they just want a copy of the police report of the theft.
2017-10-18
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$gambino$
First Officer
Flight distance : 1563980 ft
United States
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Yea state farm is awesome
2017-10-18
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randy.sauder
First Officer
Flight distance : 872572 ft
Canada
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MDJ Posted at 2017-10-18 00:57
A couple of questions about this:

1) Under which legal or regulatory environment would you propose to offer this service?  I'm not sure about other countries but in the UK "insurance" is a regulated financial service and it is illegal to offer such services for payment without being registered.  I think the main reason for this is to avoid incidences of fraud.  Other countries may have similar rules.

1). I explicitly renamed this a "fund"; aka goodwill fund as I recognize this cannot, as I said 'for legal reasons' be an 'insurance'.  Being a fund to support people, rules and an agreement would have to be clearly drafted to indicate this.  There would be no guarantee of of any 'claim' being supported under this fund.  I completely understand the implications and legality of insurance.

2). 'Claim' validity would be determined solely by the SME that administer this this process.  As indicated, rules/guidelines would need to be drafted and published for complete transparency so that those who participate can see how the process is applied.

3).  I believe you could do any of these things...if the 'terms of service' were created this way.  Each participant would clearly know and agree that a). this is not a contract for insurance; b). there is no expectation of any 'claim' being paid out; c). participants agree that any payout is up to the sole discretion of the fund administrators and decisions are final.

This is precisely what the term 'Goodwill' is all about.  Example if you have a 'contract' for warranty with DJI and you do NOT meet the conditions for coverage, DJI in it's sole discretion MAY decide to offer you some coverage and or relief of some sort...but they are not obligated to do this; it is out of their Goodwill.  You will very often see DJI offer people who have lost their drones, a 15% discount.

4). The fund is not able to go into deficit. By design, it ceases to compensate people until additional resources are available.  This goodwill fund is 100% based on it's participants contributing to the fund.  This is why I believe the cost to participate must be  very very low, it's success relies on a large # of participants.  It cannot compete with say DJI CARE.

This idea is born because their are very few (or none) solutions available to the drone community, so this would be a community driven solution until such a time as there are other viable options.


Appreciate the comments. Yours were on my mind as the primary ones that would be an initial hurdle to address, which is why I initially addressed each mostly.
2017-10-18
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Irate Retro
Second Officer
United States
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"This is why I believe the cost to participate must be  very very low, it's success relies on a large # of participants."

With a large number of participants comes a large number of claims.  With the cost numbers you have thrown out, the fund would be broke after the first claim, and certainly unsustainable after that.  It really doesn't matter if you have 100 participants or 1 million participants; the math needs to work out based on the expected percentage of claims.  Adding more people doesn't change that; it just smooths out the variance.

But I do hope this idea takes off and I'd gladly sign up for it.  Because it would sure make this forum a helluva lot more interesting, watching all the arguments that would result after each crash!

2017-10-18
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randy.sauder
First Officer
Flight distance : 872572 ft
Canada
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QuadKid Posted at 2017-10-18 01:26
I will stick with State Farm, as a matter of fact I went in to insure my new P4P about a week ago (already had a policy for my Mavic $75 p/year USD ) so I went and took out another policy for the P4P, paid the additional $75. Got a call from the agent yesterday saying they are going to cancel and refund me the $75 I spent on the secondary policy as the P4P will be insured under my Mavic Policy with full replacement cost on each drone, $0 deductible for the initial rate of $75. How cool is that, 2 birds, 1 policy with the Mavic insured for $1,200 & the P4P for $1,600 no questions asked other than if it is stolen they just want a copy of the police report of the theft.

That is awesome.  Wish we had this in Canada.
2017-10-18
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randy.sauder
First Officer
Flight distance : 872572 ft
Canada
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Irate Retro Posted at 2017-10-18 09:42
"This is why I believe the cost to participate must be  very very low, it's success relies on a large # of participants."

With a large number of participants comes a large number of claims.  With the cost numbers you have thrown out, the fund would be broke after the first claim, and certainly unsustainable after that.  It really doesn't matter if you have 100 participants or 1 million participants; the math needs to work out based on the expected percentage of claims.  Adding more people doesn't change that; it just smooths out the variance.

I fully agree.  I considered the math but hadn't run any numbers.  My thinking is that this fund's purpose may need to be initially focused on those that experience complete loss of drone for which the data analysis indicates it wasn't necessarily operator fault, but b/c they cannot recover it (e.g. 'lost at sea') DJI Care doesn't apply.  I think of this as more of a community of drone enthusiasts supporting each other, and not a system whereby everyone can expect 'coverage' as the fund is limited.

I envisio the best way to initially start such a fund would be to crunch the numbers much like it is done on "Kickstarter", whereby in order for the project to be viable, a minimum $ in the fund would be needed for this to be viable.  DJI could provide some stats on % probability of complete loss due to flyaways being reported to them.  I'll do some math and see how the figures work out based on assumptions; I encourage others to do the same.

Another approach to managing a 'claim' could be that say, once per month the Mavic community (or extended out to all DJI drones) VOTES on supporting 1 or 2 participants who report their circumstances here.  This simplifies the 'selection' process and makes it transparent and democratic.

Thanks for saying you'd participate.  I think once and if the #'s / math proved this to be a good idea to the masses it could take off. I personally don't think $1/month to participate is a big deal. Obviously the more it benefits each participant, the more likely it will take off.

People's expectations just need to be level- this is not an insurance plan, it is a user-fund to help a small number of people out out of goodwill gesture from the community...
2017-10-18
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Irate Retro
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Interesting thought on ditching the SME panel in favor of some kind of vote.  Were you envisioning having say 50 (or whatever) people give their stories and then the folks here would vote on which 1-2 of those would be eligible?  That's an interesting twist.

The person who wins that vote probably has rock solid data for drone misbehavior.  Data that DJI probably thinks is convincing too!  How do we know that he didn't already get a replacement?  All he has to do is withhold that bit of news from the forum.  This selection process may, as a side effect, just tend to select those cases and give dishonest participants a 2nd free drone.

Also keep in mind when coming up with the voting rules that fake accounts can easily be created via an automated process.  So you'd have to limit who can vote to ensure they are real unique users and not sock puppets or bots.

I don't mean to start picking things apart.  It's just what I do for a living; I figure out ways to cheat things. And people pay me for it!  Not always willingly.  
2017-10-18
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randy.sauder
First Officer
Flight distance : 872572 ft
Canada
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Irate Retro Posted at 2017-10-18 11:53
Interesting thought on ditching the SME panel in favor of some kind of vote.  Were you envisioning having say 50 (or whatever) people give their stories and then the folks here would vote on which 1-2 of those would be eligible?  That's an interesting twist.

The person who wins that vote probably has rock solid data for drone misbehavior.  Data that DJI probably thinks is convincing too!  How do we know that he didn't already get a replacement?  All he has to do is withhold that bit of news from the forum.  This selection process may, as a side effect, just tend to select those cases and give dishonest participants a 2nd free drone.

I wouldn't ditch the SME panel.  They would still oversee the validity of the circumstances and analyse the data of the drone.  If DJI is convinced by the data that DJI is responsible, they wouldn't qualify for the fund.  DJI would need to be involved somehow to prevent any instance of cheating the system.  For one deterrent only votes from users that have participated in the fund would qualify (so if someone wants to create a hundred bots, each that donate $1, they can be our guest    ).  Also voters would need to be active DJI users based on their flight (m) status; bot votes would not have this status so created is easily detected.   IF there is some loophole in this in favour of cheaters then a simple solution is to have either only the SME do the vote and / or only 'qualified participants' may vote.  One thing that I would hope DJI would do in the case of their replacements is deactivate their drones that have been replaced (via serial #); if they can't access the app then they are deactivated/can't fly; don't know if DJI does this now or why not if they do not.  I know spare parts are still a market for a deactivated drone, but you can't prevent everything.

I like the critical comments/picking things apart is the only way to develop the idea into a working solution...
2017-10-18
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Irate Retro
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randy.sauder Posted at 2017-10-18 13:27
I wouldn't ditch the SME panel.  They would still oversee the validity of the circumstances and analyse the data of the drone.  If DJI is convinced by the data that DJI is responsible, they wouldn't qualify for the fund.  DJI would need to be involved somehow to prevent any instance of cheating the system.  For one deterrent only votes from users that have participated in the fund would qualify (so if someone wants to create a hundred bots, each that donate $1, they can be our guest    ).  Also voters would need to be active DJI users based on their flight (m) status; bot votes would not have this status so created is easily detected.   IF there is some loophole in this in favour of cheaters then a simple solution is to have either only the SME do the vote and / or only 'qualified participants' may vote.  One thing that I would hope DJI would do in the case of their replacements is deactivate their drones that have been replaced (via serial #); if they can't access the app then they are deactivated/can't fly; don't know if DJI does this now or why not if they do not.  I know spare parts are still a market for a deactivated drone, but you can't prevent everything.

I like the critical comments/picking things apart is the only way to develop the idea into a working solution...

Don't be so sure that bots cannot have flight distance.  While I haven't actually tried it, I'm quite sure that I could throw together some code that would make my DJI flight records say whatever distance I wanted them to.  Ditto for a bot account.  On the subject of flight distance, notice mine is missing.  That's because I use Litchi because the Go video is too laggy... I guess that would disqualify me, but sure I could fly one battery on DJI Go 4 if a few meters was all it took to qualify.

But back to bot cheating, yeah, it wouldn't make sense to spend $200 on 200 bot votes when you've only got a 1 in 50 (or whatever) chance of being selected.  If it was a simple yes/no vote then the math starts to look better for buying votes.

The logs that get posted on e.g. Phantomhelp are easily faked.  And DJI's not going to send us logs that they extract from the aircraft themselves.  

In fact, I wouldn't expect any cooperation from DJI at all.  They have already said repeatedly that they will not under any circumstances deactivate/track stolen or lost aircraft.  I also would not expect DJI to tell us whether they have chosen to warranty-replace an aircraft.  Sometimes the moderators do mention it in the thread just as a convenience to the user, but most of the time not  It's almost always the pilot that has to report what DJI did for him.
2017-10-18
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