Another step toward journalistic use of unmanned aerial vehicles: Polish media have been using mini-helicopters tocover protests.
As I’ve said before, it is highly likely that UAV journalism will expand to include sustained, sometimes-live coverage of otherwise inaccessible news, such as massacres in the Congolese jungle.
Facilitating conditions are likely to include:
- situations with no one in charge — Somalia or eastern Congo, for instance, where there is only nominal government authority
- places where great powers are sympathetic — even if a government objects to “illegal” use of UAVs within its borders, if powers such as the US disapprove of a regime, media organization are likely to get away with their use; the Libyan uprising is an example
It is also simply unclear how adept even great-power militaries will be at finding and destroying small, stealthy, cheap UAVs.
Some of the same issues apply to use of UAVs for human rights work.