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A.P.: What you need to know about the DJI drone ban in the U.S.

franklinskite

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‘Following unanimous approval by the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the bill is making its way through Congress and could later land on President Joe Biden’s desk. The legislation proposes adding DJI to a list maintained by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) under the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act of 2019. This would block DJI’s drones from running on communications infrastructure in the U.S., according to “The New York Times,” effectively rendering them unusable. While the bill has received wide bipartisan support, DJI has vehemently voiced its opposition.‘

 
‘The bill that would effectively ground DJI drones, known as the Countering CCP Drones Act, was passed unanimously by the House Energy and Commerce Committee last month. The legislation could come to a floor vote in the House in the next month or two, said a lobbyist and a China expert who had been briefed on the plans, as part of what they described as a planned “China week” during which a number of curbs on the country’s business operations in the United States could be considered.’

 
Chad, please explain your view that corporations are bribing congress members... how does it relate to the proposed ban?
 
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Chad, please explain your view that corporations are bribing congress members... how does it relate to the proposed ban?
 
‘The bill that would effectively ground DJI drones, known as the Countering CCP Drones Act, was passed unanimously by the House Energy and Commerce Committee last month. The legislation could come to a floor vote in the House in the next month or two, said a lobbyist and a China expert who had been briefed on the plans, as part of what they described as a planned “China week” during which a number of curbs on the country’s business operations in the United States could be considered.’

Here is a gift link to that article. It's worth reading if only to see the uphill battle that DJI is facing.
 
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Chad, please explain your view that corporations are bribing congress members... how does it relate to the proposed ban?
Maybe not bribes, but lobbyists contribute to campaigns for ignorant and fearful politicians that think bashing China might be a good platform. Sadly, the politicians do not understand that many first responders use DJI drones in their critical work.
 
Maybe not bribes, but lobbyists contribute to campaigns for ignorant and fearful politicians that think bashing China might be a good platform. Sadly, the politicians do not understand that many first responders use DJI drones in their critical work.
From my conversations with the local country sheriff and the representative for my district, that representative is well aware of DJI being the favored choice for first responders. DJI is an easy target during a presidential election year.
 
If you care about the drone industry in the U.S., please join us at the Drone Advocacy Alliance, and make your voices heard. Go to our Take Action page and get in touch with your elected officials in D.C. We make it very simple!

 
If you care about the drone industry in the U.S., please join us at the Drone Advocacy Alliance, and make your voices heard. Go to our Take Action page and get in touch with your elected officials in D.C. We make it very simple!

More people need to do this.

What steps has the Drone Advocacy Alliance taken with first responders and LEO to help them reach out to their local representatives? Everyone congress is up for re-election and they last thing they want is be denounced by local by first responders/LEO
 
More people need to do this.

What steps has the Drone Advocacy Alliance taken with first responders and LEO to help them reach out to their local representatives? Everyone congress is up for re-election and they last thing they want is be denounced by local by first responders/LEO
We have someone from LEDA (Police Drone Training | LEDA) on our board. And yes, we work closely with all First Responders.
 
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That's a very concerning case. While I'm no fan of CCP, or its very wide and well known espionage activities, it's sage to say that it's quite a leap to link drone photography of a massive object like an aircraft carrier to espionage - for a variety of reasons.

Also, any attempt to link that incident to the DJI ban is a red herring. The manufacturer of the drone this student used is immaterial if the issue was he wasn't supposed to be taking drone photos of these ships- it could be a US drone, Israeli drone, or homemade drone and it shouldn't matter one bit.

I hope the DJI ban doesn't happen. It doesn't affect me right now as a Canadian, we don't rely on US distributors to get DJI drones here, and they haven't actually said there would be an import ban anyway i don't think.

But it sets a bad tone, especially because our government often looks southward for inspiration on new laws. There is a real risk of a similar ban here.
 
this sure isn't optimistic news for DJI and DJI drone owners. Seems like a lot of election-year momentum behind this and pushing it forward

can anyone explain the main reason that Autel, another Chinese company, seems to be exempt from this process?

I am really curious about the part of that article that said:

"If enacted, the legislation would likely include a transition period, potentially lasting three years or more, to allow for adjustments before the ban fully takes effect."

I wonder what that would look like. Would existing DJI drones remain functional for 2-3 years after the laws were signed?
 
Would existing DJI drones remain functional for 2-3 years after the laws were signed?
Wouldn't that defeat the purpose of the bill? It aims to do the following:

"This bill establishes (1) a mechanism to prevent communications equipment or services that pose a national security risk from entering U.S. networks, and (2) a program to remove any such equipment or services currently used in U.S. networks."

Source: H.R.4998 - Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act of 2019
 
Wouldn't that defeat the purpose of the bill? It aims to do the following:

"This bill establishes (1) a mechanism to prevent communications equipment or services that pose a national security risk from entering U.S. networks, and (2) a program to remove any such equipment or services currently used in U.S. networks."

Source: H.R.4998 - Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act of 2019
I directly quoted the article from AP that included that excerpt.

it is actually quite common for transition periods to be included in legislation like this. I doubt that the author of the AP article just added that part on pure speculation
 
I directly quoted the article from AP that included that excerpt.

it is actually quite common for transition periods to be included in legislation like this. I doubt that the author of the AP article just added that part on pure speculation
There is no grace period defined in the Countering CCP Drones Act, which amends the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act of 2019 to specifically include DJI.
 
If you care about the drone industry in the U.S., please join us at the Drone Advocacy Alliance, and make your voices heard. Go to our Take Action page and get in touch with your elected officials in D.C. We make it very simple!

Done. Thanks for your efforts supporting drone users.
 
The APnews article linked in the first post includes this curious paragraph:

Modern drones are critically dependent on communication infrastructure for core functionalities like GPS navigation, control signal transmission and a real-time video feed. Denial of access to this infrastructure for DJI drones would effectively sever their ability to receive the continuous flow of data and instructions necessary for stable flight, precise control and real-time visual feedback. This critical connection serves as the lifeblood of these drones, and its severance would render them largely inert.

Modern drones "use" GPS for navigational functionality, yes, but certainly can also be operated without GPS. In any case, they only use the GPS signal in a receiving capacity. How can access to receiving GPS signals be denied to only DJI drones?

Furthermore, the "flow of data and instructions necessary for stable flight, precise control and real-time visual feedback" is not in any way "critically dependent on communication infrastructure". All of that communication is handled directly by DJI's own equipment from the controller in your hands to the aircraft and back. You don't need cellphone or internet access.

You could turn off power to the entire American "communication infrastructure" grid, and DJI drones would still fly perfectly well. "This critical connection serves as the lifeblood of these drones, and its severance would render them largely inert." Huh?

How would denying access to America's "communication infrastructure" render a drone inert?

I suppose the FCC could revoke DJI's licence to transmit on the required control frequencies, but even that wouldn't stop anyone from flying their drones.

How would anyone intent on using a drone for espionage be prevented by this nonsense from using an American made drone instead?
 

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