Here is my take. I agree with them locking down the system for anyone who flies under the hobby rules of whatever country they are in. In the US its "Special Rules for Model Aircraft." I don't agree with them being locked down for anyone flying under formal rules, be it a Canadian SFOC or the US's Part 107 or 333 to the Part 91 rules or whatever system is used in another country.
This is an unfortunate thing because of the lowest common denominator. The guy who just went to Best Buy and picked up a Mavic, Spark or P4P and spent maybe ten minutes reading the quick start guide, plugs in a battery and flies. That guy gets a little comfortable in his abilities and has an unqualified belief in what the system can do. Then he decides to take it out in areas where he shouldn't and does stupid stuff all the time.
Then there is the ill-informed belief that if you are under the hobby rules, that somehow you can fly and do whatever you want with impunity. That simply isn't the case. But the guy who just bought his drone from best buy is completely unaware of section 336 of the USPL 112-95. Under hobby rules you can go above 400ft AGL as long as you are adhering to the full scope of the 336. All flying under the 336 directs everyone to be flying under the safety guidelines of a national community based organization. Under that part the only relevant one to be recognized at the moment is the AMA. The FAA is going to be setting qualifying minimum standards for future CBO's probably next year. Under the AMA you are not supposed to fly where model aircraft activities are prohibited. Not supposed to fly in a careless or reckless manner. Not supposed to fly over unprotected persons, vehicles vessels and structures. Yet we see youtube videos constantly showing people flying over highways, around major metro areas and in airspace where they probably did not contact every airport within 5 statute miles. Yes private strips and heliports qualify under this definition. That is another part of the 336. The FAA states on their website an airport operator may not deny the flight, however you continuance to do so maybe evidence that you conducted an unsafe operation of a model aircraft in the NAS. The last part of the 336 has a clause that states, "nothing in this section shall prohibit the administrator from pursing enforcement action against unsafe model aircraft activity in the NAS."
Unfortunately there has been a lack of enforcement action as the FAA does not have the resources to catch every idiot around the country on a daily basis. As a result the FAA as well as other governments have been working with the major manufacturers to lock the systems down top prevent some of the buffoonery.
In an ideal world you would have a system that prohibits flight in unauthorized areas, but would let yo unlock that system right away, but the system has your contact info and goes to a database to the governing agencies. This would prevent 90% of the BS flying out there. Since I fly under authorizations and COA's and the FAA knows what I do anyway I would not be against it.
I agree with your thoughts. I feel that DJI should not be controlling or policing my flying. I have spent a small fortune with DJI over the years and no where does it state that I can only fly so high or so far until I take the quad out of the box after they have my money.
I am part 107 Licensed and I spent a lot of time studying and came out with a 90 on my first attempt. I did not take the test until I fully understood the material. Actually I found it very interesting and it did make me much more aware. Not that I was reckless beforehand, but, I now understand Airspace and the Rules and they all make sense to me. I do not object to the FAA's reasoning one bit.
I have stated before that the persons that are licensed to fly should not be restricted in their activities by DJI. I would not fly near an Airport or its flight path even with a waiver. Just not safe.
I have a drivers license and my car is registered and I am not restricted to certain roads or speeds by the car manufacturer.
We should be able to submit our Certificate and proof of registration and have our gear unlocked. I have already dissolved DJI of any liability as soon as I activated the gear.