Closer to home, Bobby Brown had a close encounter with a whale off of Wrightsville Beach back in November 2010. His Youtube video became an immediate hit as it pulled in over 30,000 hits.
Within days of posting his video, he was contacted by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) and they politely asked if he would remove his video. According to Bobby, NOAA informed him that it was illegal to be within 500 yards of a marine mammal. They explained that the law's aim was to protect the whales natural habitat and to keep people from either intentionally or unintentionally harming the mammals.
Bobby was very appreciative of NOAA's handling of the situation and he removed it from Youtube. He then made a follow up video explaining to viewers what happened to the original video and took the opportunity to educate viewers about the marine mammal law. Here is Bobby's informative followup video.