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Originally posted on Gigaom:

When the producers of The Amazing Race decided to make a Canadian version of the reality TV show, they were delighted to discover that they could use unmanned aircraft to film teams of contestants scrambling from place to place.

In the U.S. that quite literally would not fly. Federal Aviation Administration rules forbid any commercial use of such drones, which typically weigh under five pounds and offer new and useful opportunities for photography.

The result is that the Canadian approach, which is based on a simple permit system, is allowing hundreds of businesses to integrate the technology in a range of industries, while U.S. companies are grounded awaiting regulation.

A ticket to fly

In the United States, everyone from media organizations to photographers to search-and-rescue crews are in a legal dogfight with the Federal Aviation Administration over a controversial policy that says only hobbyists can use drones.

Photo by Funky Frog Stock/Shutterstock

Photo by Funky Frog Stock/Shutterstock

While the courts…

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