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Since the internet was in its infancy, the rights of users to use it to express their opinions was sacrosanct. When the first laws of the internet were being forged by legislature and in the courts, internet service providers (ISPs) were the focus of these sacred rights and they avoided liability by claiming they were “mere conduits” of these views and not “publishers” of them (and the ECommerce Directive of 2000 confirmed this). This felt like the right approach; by not making the “engineering back office” of the internet liable for the content on it, the internet could flourish. It would remain free thinking and free to use, and freedom of speech would be preserved.

In May 2018, the Government announced revised laws on drone regulation. This was met with concern by many who said it didn’t go far enough. The British Airline Pilots’ Association felt it wouldn’t make drone use near airports safe, giving the example that the new law provided drones could be flown up to 400 ft within 1 km of an airport boundary – highly dangerous when an aircraft would already be lower than 1 km from the ground at this point on approach to an airport.

What seemed like a fairly basic lack of consultation and drafting was highlighted only 6 months later when, in the week before Christmas, Gatwick airport was shut first for 36 hours and then again for half a day only two days later after reports of drones being sighted near the airport.