Google’s Eric Schmidt Calls For Civilian Drone Regulation

Eric Schmidt TestifyGoogle Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt took some time out of his busy schedule this weekend to tell the Guardian newspaper that civilians flying spy drones over each other’s houses is a bad idea.

We shrugged in confusion too. We too think that flying a small plane with spying equipment over anyone’s house is a bad idea. But a neighbor? Well, it would be pretty hard to disguise what you were doing.

“You’re having a dispute with your neighbor,” he told The Guardian in an interview printed in the paper this weekend. “How would you feel if your neighbor went over and bought a commercial observation drone that they can launch from their backyard. It just flies over your house all day. How would you feel about it?”

We have one word for any neighbor of ours that flies a drone over our house, and that is “catapult.”

Drones are a hot topic at the moment, and the potential weaponization of them is something that both intrigues and terrifies people in equal measure.

Schmidt, who is a confidant of President Obama, a man with whom he has exchanged friendly nods since 2007, didn’t want to get political about it though.

“I’m not going to pass judgment on whether armies should exist, but I would prefer to not spread and democratise the ability to fight war to every single human being,” he said, according to a BBC report. “It’s got to be regulated… It’s one thing for governments, who have some legitimacy in what they’re doing, but have other people doing it… it’s not going to happen.”

No doubt Schmidt won’t have any issues when neighbors spy on each other with Google Glass.

This article was originally published on the Inquirer.

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