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May 7, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Some 14 media organizations representing a broad spectrum of print, broadcast and digital companies, have filed a brief with the National Transportation Safety Board challenging the government’s ban on their use of small drones in their news coverage. An administrative law judge had already ruled that the FAA cannot enforce its blanket ban of such small drones by the news media, but the FAA has appealed that decision to the full five-member safety board. In its brief, the news organizations said, “The FAA’s position is untenable as it rests on a fundamental misunderstanding about journalism. News gathering is not a ‘business purpose.’ It is a First Amendment right.” But the FAA said in response that allowing the news media to operate the drones without constraint “could impact the safe operation of the national airspace system and the safety of people and property.”