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Thursday, Jul 31st

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FAA to Nationals: Drop the drone

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Washington Nationals

Weird story out of spring training: the Washington Nationals were ordered by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to stop using a drone camera to photograph practices at the team's Viera complex.

The Nationals were using a drone to take photos of practices, presumably for marketing. Now, in this case, when we're talking drone, we're not talking about the military-style drones that are basically full-sized airplanes controlled remotely, but rather small multi-motor vehicles built around a camera. You can read the full account at Spring Training Online, but the upshot is that the FAA doesn't allow any commercial drone use while rules are being formulated. Now, to many (especially those in the pro photography community, where drone use is being heavily advocated), this ban is silly, but there's some need to have clear rules in place: We can see a future where dozens of drone enthusiasts descend on a big sporting event, like a World Series game, to take photos from high above the action.

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