Related Professionals: Douglas J. Wood

Type: News Releases

(WASHINGTON, DC; March 31, 2015)—Reed Smith today released its latest white paper, Crowded Skies: Opportunities and Challenges in an Era of Drones—a compact new report on the serious and varied legal issues posed by the rapid rise of drone technology.

Crowded Skies explores the way drones impact the day-to-day lives of corporations, organizations, and individuals—and the legal risks involved.

“The myriad ways in which drones are being used to film, deliver, monitor, and touch our lives is truly transformative to the way we do business,” says Crowded Skies co-editor, Douglas J. Wood, who is Managing Partner of Reed Smith’s New York Office, and a member of the firm’s Entertainment & Media Industry Group. “Legal issues surrounding drones can be overlooked or ignored at the operator’s peril, especially as the law naturally lags behind how this new technology is regulated.”

Drones—also known as, unmanned aircraft systems, or “UAS”—provide numerous advantages, including safety, cost-effectiveness, and access to previously hard-to-reach areas and altitudes. While knowledge of aviation and transportation law may be quite obvious in terms of UAS flight requirements, operators must be aware of ancillary legal issues—such as, intellectual property, insurance, and land use rights—to avoid risks that include copyright infringement, invasion of privacy, bodily injury, property damage, and trespassing violations.

Mr. Wood developed Crowded Skies with his co-editor, Ross P. Kelley, an Entertainment & Media lawyer in Reed Smith’s Century City office. The twelve chapters in the online white paper were researched and authored by 22 Reed Smith attorneys, who break down the risks and ramifications of drones in a variety of disciplines. Easy-to-digest chapters cover issues in aviation, advertising and promotion, copyrights, labor and employment, export controls, film and TV production, insurance, music, privacy, and product liability.

Crowded Skies was formally released today in Washington, DC at this year’s forward-facing 2015 ANA Advertising Law & Public Policy Conference—“The Collision of Law and Policy: What Lies Ahead for Advertisers and Marketers”—which was co-chaired by Wood.

Chapter 1 of Crowded Skies delves into “Drone-vertising”—an industry in the making.

“With the proliferation of drone usage in the military, film industry, and for emergency response, entrepreneurs all around the world are starting to incorporate drones in science-fiction-like advertising and marketing tactics to consumers,” said Wood. “However, marketers must be mindful of the legal ramifications that come with such usage—including FAA and FTC regulations, insurance and IP issues, and privacy rights.”

Read more in Crowded Skies: Opportunities and Challenges in an Era of Drones.

About Reed Smith

Reed Smith is a global relationship law firm with more than 1,800 lawyers in 25 offices throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Founded in 1877, the firm represents leading international businesses, from Fortune 100 corporations to mid-market and emerging enterprises. Its lawyers provide litigation and other dispute resolution services in multi-jurisdictional and other high-stakes matters; deliver regulatory counsel; and execute the full range of strategic domestic and cross-border transactions. Reed Smith is a preeminent advisor to industries including financial services, life sciences, health care, advertising, entertainment and media, shipping and transport, energy and natural resources, real estate, manufacturing and technology, and education. For more information, visit reedsmith.com.

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