This article does bring up many concerns regarding the use of drones by hobbyists -legal and ethical. Privacy these days is a mirage! We know there are satellites watching us from the sky, video surveillance is pervasive and now we have invading cameras mounted on Quadcopters to get even more up close and personal :-(
The paparazzis in Hollywood must be salivating now that their options are many! They don't have to chase the celebrities any more -their drones can do it for them! And they can sweep down low and snoop sitting in their cars!
As for me, I will be content to taking a Dronie, i.e., a selfie from a Drone... and don't intend to go beyond that!
When I was a kid, there were balsa wood model airplanes powered by a rubber band, that flew a short distance. Okay, maybe that's "stretching" the point. But there have also been radio-controlled model airplanes that run on small ICE engines, for many decades, that never seem to have elicited indignation.
I'm not sure at what point these contraptions become something to be obsessive about, although I suppose at some point obsessing is justifiable.
A kid taking pictures from a model airplane, in effect, is not too worrisome, unless the thing crashes and breaks something. Perhaps the small fine reflects this.
Drones are, in essence, flying autonomous vehicles. Pros and cons surrounding drones today might well foreshadow the debate over the development of self-driving cars. In the context of a strongly regulated aviation industry, "self-flying" drones pose a fresh challenge. How safe is it to fly drones in different environments? Should drones be required for visual line of sight – as are piloted airplanes? Join EE Times' Junko Yoshida as she moderates a panel of drone experts.