Why do so many people think shooting drones down will be legal ?


AngerDanger

macrumors 601
Dec 9, 2008
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It's not legal yet, but I've heard they're changing the rules for MacRumors posters who suddenly decide to create their third inane thread of the day.

Vote YES on Proposition 24!
I like what I'm hearing, Keys!

I was considering following up my amazing raisin bran thread with something to the tune of "How would you pronounce 'Vtfrotgdlpx', a word I just made up?"
 

BigMcGuire

Contributor
Jan 10, 2012
4,720
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California
I assume the question is, why do so many people assume shooting down drones to be legal?

Last year, I was relaxing outside enjoying a read on my iPad on a nice day that I decided to take off from work (I don't get many of these)... and ... this buzzing sound kept getting louder and louder, and ... before I know it, I had a drone buzzing (very loudly) in the treetops pointing its camera at me.

When I made eye contact with the drone, it attempted to fly away but was back within a few minutes - pointing its camera directly at me.

So I went to my front yard and looked for anyone with a drone controller. Couldn't find anyone but I did see a few neighbors visibly upset by this drone that had been harassing them as well.

I did my best to ignore the drone but it is REALLY really really annoying to have a loud buzzing drone pointing its camera at you in your backyard when you expect privacy. I could see how someone would get really pissed off about that.

An hour later cops were called and the drone disappeared but not before bothering me specifically for an hour+.
 
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DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,654
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Delaware
Depends on what you are trying to justify, I suppose.
OP, are you asking from the drone-pilot's POV, or that of the drone target?
Maybe your neighbor needs to keep track of your activities. I'm pretty sure that's always legal... :rolleyes:
 

Apple fanboy

macrumors Nehalem
Feb 21, 2012
33,746
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Behind the Lens, UK
I assume the question is, why do so many people assume shooting down drones to be legal?

Last year, I was relaxing outside enjoying a read on my iPad on a nice day that I decided to take off from work (I don't get many of these)... and ... this buzzing sound kept getting louder and louder, and ... before I know it, I had a drone buzzing (very loudly) in the treetops pointing its camera at me.

When I made eye contact with the drone, it attempted to fly away but was back within a few minutes - pointing its camera directly at me.

So I went to my front yard and looked for anyone with a drone controller. Couldn't find anyone but I did see a few neighbors visibly upset by this drone that had been harassing them as well.

I did my best to ignore the drone but it is REALLY really really annoying to have a loud buzzing drone pointing its camera at you in your backyard when you expect privacy. I could see how someone would get really pissed off about that.
Or when you’ve taken the time and trouble to go find a nice quiet spot to do some landscape photography, and some twit decides to fly their drone.
Should be banned.
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,654
2,379
Delaware
Legally, you need to be more sure than "I think..."
I suspect that in most areas, your property does NOT include the airspace above your property.
 

mmomega

macrumors 68040
Dec 30, 2009
3,317
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DFW, TX
Just make sure you know the direction that bullet is going should you miss or even hit and it continues onward.

Personally I am not on the side of someone annoyed me so I pull out a firearm and start firing all willy nilly at a drone.
I'd be on the way to get some Ativan possibly.


Woosah cap'n


A fishing rod with a nice weight on it has some distance and can tangle up them props real good though.
 
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SDColorado

Contributor
Nov 6, 2011
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Highlands Ranch, CO

Tech198

macrumors G5
Mar 21, 2011
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Australia, Perth
Really? SHooting DOWN drones? That sounds more like a sport

It should be seen more of a law abiding issue (flying in restricted areas, or snoopers etc). don't think no one ones know they are registered to.

If they are purposely flying a drone into your property with the intent to harass/annoy/spy, the drone should be able to be taken out. It is still trespassing as far as I'm concerned.
In the from yard its not, but the back yard ... Go ahead and shoot it. I'll even supply the bullets to get you started:)
 

retta283

macrumors 65816
Jun 8, 2018
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Kingman, AZ
Really? SHooting DOWN drones? That sounds more like a sport

It should be seen more of a law abiding issue (flying in restricted areas, or snoopers etc). don't think no one ones know they are registered to.



In the from yard its not, but the back yard ... Go ahead and shoot it. I'll even supply the bullets to get you started:)
I can understand where you're coming from, because anyone on the street could just easily spy on you. But if you're relaxing on the patio in your backyard and someone flies a drone around and watches you, you should have the right to stop it.
 

Tomorrow

macrumors 604
Mar 2, 2008
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I don't have anything against drones specifically, but I think if they are in your property they should be fair game to bring down.
This should also apply to children, cats, people who park in front of your house, and ding-dong ditchers as well. If they're on your property and you're annoyed by them, shoot them.

[/sarcasm]
 

SDColorado

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Nov 6, 2011
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Highlands Ranch, CO
This should also apply to children, cats, people who park in front of your house, and ding-dong ditchers as well. If they're on your property and you're annoyed by them, shoot them.

[/sarcasm]
I know the non sequitur was followed by a /sarcasm flag. But if a drone is on my property with the intent of invading my personal space and privacy that is a far cry from children, cats, people who park in front of my house, etc.
 

Tomorrow

macrumors 604
Mar 2, 2008
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I know the non sequitur was followed by a /sarcasm flag. But if a drone is on my property with the intent of invading my personal space and privacy that is a far cry from children, cats, people who park in front of my house, etc.
Unless the drone is otherwise doing something illegal or invasive - no, it really isn't.

A person standing in your front yard looking at you isn't breaking any laws, and neither is a drone.
 

MasterControlOp

Suspended
Mar 28, 2019
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Unless the drone is otherwise doing something illegal or invasive - no, it really isn't.

A person standing in your front yard looking at you isn't breaking any laws, and neither is a drone.
But its your property right? Isn't it trespassing and possible breach of privacy because they all have cameras? People aren't allowed to take pictures of you when you are on your property, IIRC.
 

SDColorado

Contributor
Nov 6, 2011
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Highlands Ranch, CO
Unless the drone is otherwise doing something illegal or invasive - no, it really isn't.

A person standing in your front yard looking at you isn't breaking any laws, and neither is a drone.
Perhaps you meant sidewalk and not front yard? Because you can prevent someone from standing in your front yard and looking at you. You may not be able to prevent them from standing on the sidewalk, but that depends on intent. There are "peeping tom" laws. But observing from the sidewalk is a far cry from a drone being in your backyard, peering into upper-level windows or other areas where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy

In my area "Drones are prohibited from flying over public buildings, trails, public parks, public streets, and any area that is deemed to be city property." They would have a hard time getting to my home legally without flying over public streets, trails or city property including open space.

But Colorado Laws also go on to say:

"A person commits the crime of first degree criminal trespass if he or she is not a peace officer or other agent of a state or local government agency acting in his or her official capacity and he or she knowingly and intentionally uses an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to observe, record, transmit, or capture images of another person when the other person has a reasonable expectation of privacy."

"A person commits harassment if he or she is not a peace officer or other agent of a state or local government agency acting in his or her official capacity and, with intent to harass, annoy, or alarm another person, he or she uses a UAV to track a person’s movements in or about a public place without the person’s authorization."

So it if is on my property and is observing, recording, transmitting, capturing images, harassing, annoying or alarming, then the drone is, in fact, doing something illegal. Additionally, there are also laws regarding photography and voyeurism if it is indeed capturing images.
 
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BigMcGuire

Contributor
Jan 10, 2012
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California
Sorry, I'm not believing that drone or any drone can fly for an hour or more.
It was off and on, not constant. :p It had been flying around the whole morning on and off - it disappeared closer to lunch when the cops were called and they started looking around the neighborhood to see who it was.

It didn't stay in one place for more than 5-10 mins then it would disappear for little bit.
 
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Tomorrow

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But its your property right? Isn't it trespassing and possible breach of privacy because they all have cameras? People aren't allowed to take pictures of you when you are on your property, IIRC.
If they're not photographing the inside of your house, they're well within their rights. There's no expectation of privacy for the outside of your house.

And I suspect you're missing the point - there's a difference between asking a drone operator to stop flying over your yard or taking pictures, and simply shooting it down. I was trying to illustrate that if a person was in your yard showing no hostile intent, and you didn't want them there, you would more likely ask them to leave than to shoot them.

Perhaps you meant sidewalk and not front yard? Because you can prevent someone from standing in your front yard and looking at you. You may not be able to prevent them from standing on the sidewalk, but that depends on intent. There are "peeping tom" laws. But observing from the sidewalk is a far cry from a drone being in your backyard, peering into upper-level windows or other areas where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy
Peeping into your house, yes. Looking at you outside your home - where I assume you would probably be if you were going to shoot at the drone - is perfectly okay. If you don't want someone to look at you, go back inside.

In my area "Drones are prohibited from flying over public buildings, trails, public parks, public streets, and any area that is deemed to be city property." They would have a hard time getting to my home legally without flying over public streets, trails or city property including open space.
None of the spaces you listed are your property.

But Colorado Laws also go on to say:

"A person commits the crime of first degree criminal trespass if he or she is not a peace officer or other agent of a state or local government agency acting in his or her official capacity and he or she knowingly and intentionally uses an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to observe, record, transmit, or capture images of another person when the other person has a reasonable expectation of privacy."
Which you don't have if you're standing outside in full view.

"A person commits harassment if he or she is not a peace officer or other agent of a state or local government agency acting in his or her official capacity and, with intent to harass, annoy, or alarm another person, he or she uses a UAV to track a person’s movements in or about a public place without the person’s authorization."

So it if is on my property and is observing, recording, transmitting, capturing images, harassing, annoying or alarming, then the drone is, in fact, doing something illegal.
Fine. Fire away. And best of luck to you in court.

Additionally, there are also laws regarding photography and voyeurism if it is indeed capturing images.
Again, it's not voyeurism if you're outside in full view. There's no expectation of privacy.
 
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LizKat

macrumors 603
Aug 5, 2004
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Again, it's not voyeurism if you're outside in full view. There's no expectation of privacy.
Nor peace and quiet, apparently. I would expect some laws to be tightened up a little more going forward. It might take awhile. And it might take the hapless drone owner having the bad luck to harass the wrong Very Important Locally Elected Official.