This month, we received news of a US case where the drone law team at Holland & Knight LLP successfully represented a coalition of news organisations before the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) regarding drone news gathering.
The novel case before the NTSB involved an aerial photographer who was fined $10,000 for controlling a drone around the University of Virginia.
He successfully challenged the fine before an administrative law judge who ruled that the Federation Aviation Administration (FAA) did not have authority to enforce the fine but after the FAA appealed the ruling to the NTSB, sixteen news outlets working with the law firm filed a brief arguing that the administrative law Judge's ruling was correct.
The decision against the FAA highlights that there is a need for guidance on non-military use of drones.
The news of this case coincides with the recent publication by the UK Information Commissioners Office (ICO) of a consultation paper on the current UK guidance on the use of CCTV and other surveillance technologies which specifically identifies drones as being an emerging technology which requires regulatory control for issues such as data protection.
The ICO consultation on its code of practice was launched on 20 May last and closes on 1 July 2014.