Is Avigilon Telling You That Competitor VMSes Violate Their Patents And Lawsuits Are Imminent?

Is Avigilon telling you that competitor VMSes violate their patents and lawsuits are imminent? One of our largest integrators reported back that an Avigilon employee (and friend) said that VMSes violate their patents and they are in the process of "lawyering up".

UPDATE July 29: Avigilon CEO confirms rolling out of 'patent licensing' campaign.


I did a US Court filings search and cannot find any Avigilon patent lawsuits. Avigilon could be talking with integrators and competitors about this. However, if they are, it looks like it has not gotten to the point where they have actually filed.

This smacks of the early days of Avigilon sales/marketing where they told many half-truths/lies to (scare?) convince people to use their products??? Just a thought...

I really don't understan why they cannot just tell people the "truth"??? They have good products at good prices but consistantly they bend things to try and take short-cuts to the sale!

I guess it starts at the top and filters down...

In fairness, if they are saying this, it may very well be the truth. They may genuinely believe that competitors violate their patents. OV did that, sued, won a number of cases and now Avigilon can leverage that heritage / case history.

I am not saying this is a good thing for anyone but Avigilon but it would surprise me if this did not happen.

I agree but when the sales people are out front telling customers and potential customers these things before they happen, it puts them in a very negative light and makes them look desparate for business.

I still believe these are scare tactics until an actual lawsuit is submitted. Most reputable companies do not market their lawsuits openly, rather they quietly take care of business.

Though all the major players, except for Techwin, have agreements in place with Ovigilon, so they would have to open up a new vector using a different claim of infringement.

And one wonders whether they would actually sue their existing paying patent 'customers'.

The worst case scenario might be if Avigilon were to falter as a manufacturer. That could lead to an increasing dependence on 'easy' money, and the possible spiral into pure trollism... It's hard to imagine they would go down without a battle.

So a successful Avigilon might be in the bests interests of everyone...

"Though all the major players, except for Techwin, have agreements in place with Avigilon"

You are overstating that.

First, it's not clear what the status is with Axis (Axis had something in place before the lawsuits on at least one OV patent but never an official announcement like the others and is not listed by OV nor Aviiglon). Second, I don't think most of the major VMSes have any agreements (e.g., Milestone, Genetec).

Third, even for companies with agreements, we do not know what patents they cover. OV explained to me directly that companies could pick and choose from what patents they wanted coverage on. Of course, it's not just the OV patents in play, it is the other 96 Avigilon bought out. In other words, Avigilon could expand the scope of what patents they believe rivals violate.

Fourth, even if most of the big names have agreements, there are still hundreds of other manufacturers in the industry that do not have agreements with OV / Avigilon. And these other hundred or so combine account for roughly half the (non "Hikuan") market.

OV did that, sued, won a number of cases and now Avigilon can leverage that heritage / case history.

Perhaps I missed it -- but I haven't found any cases were OV sued and won a legal proceeding. Perhaps the point here is that they sued and received compensation by settling with several companies (e.g. Sony, Samsung, Bosch)?

Have there been any proceedings where OV sued and won a legal judgment based on their patents/IP?

Have there been any proceedings where OV sued and won a legal judgment based on their patents/IP?

Meaning where the Court found in favor of OV and awarded them x $$?

None that I'm aware of. Though its in the best interests of everyone (except for the yet to be sued) to settle before such an award was made. Since we don't know the settlement its hard to say who 'won', in those cases.

On the other hand, Samsung refused to settle and the case was dismissed. So there's that.

As for legal findings of the OV patents, two of the patents in question DID pass Reexamination by the USPTO...

Disclosure: I am an Avigilon Sales Employee

Please take the time to consider that this conversation is centered around what one integrator said to one competing manufacturer salesperson about one Avigilon salesperson's comments.

I have never heard anything like this in any sales meeting, call, email, etc. If it happened as described, it's definitely not something that is endorsed by Avigilon sales leadership.

Please don't paint us with a broad brush based on one rumor.

"Disclosure: I am an Avigilon Sales Employee"

But for how long, given that you have commented on IPVM :)

I appreciate the feedback, thanks for sharing!

Post on IPVM, Work at Avigilon.

Pick one.

Did not mean to say all sales people use this tactic...just meant it to be "IF" these tactics are being used...

I know a few Avigilon people and they are ALL good folks!!!

But as we know a few bad apples can ruin the pie for everyone.

I call bull*** on this. It's way to easy to start rumors using the "undisclosed" feature on this site.

Undisclosed A is a known executive in the industry. He asked me this question privately. I recommended he post a discussion.

It's your site to run. My opinion is that it's a bad idea to start threads about what one person said. Especially if that one person is a salesperson.

C, what he asked about was a reported business practice, so it's fair game.

The most direct way to squash something like this is an official response from the company: "No, we did not do X nor do we plan to do that." The least effective way is to complain about what we allow to be posted.

We all know there's no official response coming.

"The least effective way is to complain about what we allow to be posted."

That's not helpful. Are you saying you would sanction people posting every rumor a manufacturer salesperson floated out there about a competitive business practice?

"We all know there's no official response coming."

Then that is a problem for Avigilon, right? They should to be able to conduct media / press / analyst relationships with the most well-read publication in their market.

Like how you say this is Avigilon's problem and you condon it while you laugh your way to the bank.

"Are you saying you would sanction people posting every rumor a manufacturer salesperson floated out there about a competitive business practice?"

This is not I overheard some guy in the bathroom say something.

An integrator with direct knowledge told a manufacturer executive. The manufacturer executive, who is known to us, posted it.

Again, the easy way for a manufacturer to refute this is to simply issue a categorical denial (if they can). We can debate this abstract topic back and forth but it will not change anything.

No one here knows who this person is for all we know its you posting undisclosed. Not to mention the only company/person that benefits from these rumors is IPVM because people will click on these posts just to see what you will post next.

Michael, you know me! Although you haven't visited our booth in a couple of years.

Then message me on Linkedin if I know you.

Again, this is a known executive in the industry.

And while you are casting aspersions on others, how about you disclose your affiliations with Avigilon, including how much business you do with them, gifts or trips they have provided you or family, etc.

"An integrator with direct knowledge told a manufacturer executive. The manufacturer executive, who is known to us, posted it."

This is where the argument goes full circle, so I'll duck out. The integrator has direct knowledge of what a salesperson told them. There are so many crazy things that could be posted here based on that threshold.

"No one here knows who this person is for all we know its you posting undisclosed."

Ahhh, those days I used to be be into online gaming and would be accused of using a bot. I wasn't even that good, just got a lucky shot every now and then.

Oh well, back to the "Articles" section for some news. I'll be back to the "Discussions" section when I want and expect entertainment. :)

Avigilon bought 90+ patents from a well known troll.

Being worried or suspicious about what they are going to do with them is like being worried about your neighbor who is stashing pipebombs in his shed.

Whether it is fair or rumor, Avigilon is the one who bought them. Seems understandable that people are a little paranoid about future intentions to use them.

Is Avigilon telling you that competitor VMSes violate their patents and lawsuits are imminent?

To answer the question, no.

Not yet. This could be an instance of a bad sales person making use of the rookie sales tactic FUD.

I check in monthly at IPVM for the latest gossip, and I'm never let down. This reminds me of a political when pressed for evidence, they defended their attack by saying the gravity of the charges were enough.

It's not about the 'gravity', it's the reasonableness of the claim and the source of it. Also, it's not an attack, it's a question in a discussion.

I've tried to explain this to Avigilon partners in the past, but you all do not get it. The more of a battle / spectacle you make it, the more other people will be interested in reading it.

This has nothing to do with Avigilon, This thread serves the interests of IPVM's and not the industry. Facing your accusors is a basic tenant in US law, and promoting this type of slander is self serving. Get back to what you do best and evaluate new technology.

"This has nothing to do with Avigilon."

Andrew, for you, this has everything to do with Avigilon. Reviewing your past comments, most of them are about Avigilon and the only time you complain about IPVM, is when we say negative things about Avigilon.

Don't pretend to be an objective truth sayer. Just own your allegiances.

"Get back to what you do best and evaluate new technology."

We released 3 tests last week, including one on Avigilon:

Feel free to comment on those.

I check in monthly at IPVM for the latest gossip, and I'm never let down.

Andrew hit the nail on the head. This place is turning into a gossip/TMZ site and less of a technology site. You continuously brag about how many clicks these social experiment threads you create.

Then that is a problem for Avigilon, right?

It's only a problem becuase you have created it.

Then don't join or cancel your account if you think it's just gossip. You've followed IPVM for more than 6 years. You know that IPVM criticizes manufacturers. None of this is new yet you read IPVM every day and keep on coming back.

"It's only a problem becuase you have created it."

I've created an independent site, free of manufacturers buying influence. If Avigilon is incapable of dealing with that, this is their problem. Axis gets criticized routinely, but they can deal with it. I've suggested that Hikvision may be 'flooding the market' and that they have a hacking scandal, yet they deal with it. Somehow those 2 manufacturers who are far bigger than Avigilon can still manage to answer questions from IPVM and productively contribute feedback.

Avigilon's tactic is to let small dealers defend them by engaging in a debate in the comments. Not smart.

Lastly, I am not 'bragging' about the attention these threads get. I am trying to make you understand that ironically your protests are drawing more net negative attention to your partner by doing this. And IPVM is not going to change.

Lastly, I am not 'bragging' about the attention these threads get. I am trying to make you understand that ironically your protests are drawing more net negative attention to your partner by doing this. And IPVM is not going to change.

Oh see this is where you are confused as I understood this from day one.

I, for one, appreciate the industry news as much as, if not more than, the reviews. It's important to know which way the wind is blowing.

My comments about unnamed sources making claims about vendors has nothing to do with Avigilon. I simply note that you "ocassionally" engage in TMZ like articles. It is the Truth, and when called out, you get all defensive and attack the commentors. Would Avigilon providing a reply finally validate IPVM?

Being a public traded company, statements such as this are frowned upon by the SEC, SOX, and investors.

However, as noted in some recent reviews on IPVM, Avigilon has done a good job integrating new technology, and they do have a have a legal responsibility on behalf of the share holders to protect their intellectual property, and we may see that someday. I am confident they won't be giving IPVM advanced notice. :)

"Being a public traded company, statements such as this are frowned upon by the SEC, SOX, and investors."

First of all, Avigilon is a Canadian corporation trading on the Toronto stock exchange, so the US SEC and Sarbanes-Oxley are not applicable.

Secondly, you misunderstand what statements publicly traded companies can make. Plenty of statements are perfectly acceptable, that's why you see publicly traded companies like Axis and Hikvision (who has a valuation 28 times as large as Avigilon) regularly make comments to IPVM.

Third, this is not an 'article', it's a three-line question posted in the discussion, drawn out by an Avigilon employee and Avigilon partners.

Finally, and again, you (like Mike Miller) have a track record of only protesting IPVM's actions when it comes to perceived negative items about your partner Avigilon, never against Avigilon competitors.

John,

I will defend you, or any company when TMZ-Like discussions based on unsubstantiated claims are made here or anywhere. For all the good you’re doing by educating prospective clients and integrators alike, In my opinion “he-said-she-said” discussions diminish your brand - just Saying!

As for defending – we can only defend what we know. If some employee, or partner said what’s purported to be said, then it is what it is – right. Being in the business of security, and having made substantial IP investments, maybe it’s the sign of things to come.

Andrew, I understand your early points about hearsay, it's hard to determine what was actually said or implied by the purported comments/innuendo/rumor.

On the other hand, I think that the people on this forum are savvy enough to apply the right amount of granular salt to the statement in any event. And I for one would rather make the credibility decision myself than have it suppressed somehow.

Also, I'm no longer sure what your position exactly is, after your last comments of

If some employee, or partner said what’s purported to be said, then it is what it is – right. Being in the business of security, and having made substantial IP investments, maybe it’s the sign of things to come.

...they do have a have a legal responsibility on behalf of the share holders to protect their intellectual property, and we may see that someday. I am confident they won't be giving IPVM advanced notice.

Here you seem to be stressing that the rumor could be true and not unexpected, assuming it was actually communicated correctly. Twice.

And if it were to be true, certainly that would be newsworthy, no? And with no official word likely to come, as you say, isn't this type of discussion valid for IPVM to address?

Rumor or not, given what has been going on in the past couple years, I think it is prudent to consider it.

If there are no cracks in the levies, there's very little use in worrying about them. However, upon finding some cracks in the levies have been occuring- they may possibly be insignificant and nothing to worry about in the near future, but given the possible catastrophic consequences, it'd still be prudent to have some plan for the consequences if it occurs.

Make those product partners of yours partners. Make them stand behind their ownership of the IP driving their products.

My position equates to a fly on a cows butt, as you drive by doing 70 mph.

Lol! Slammed it into reverse and I'm idling now. :)

Seriously though, what would be your recomendation to the forum going forward?

No undisclosed posting?

No anonymous sources?

Please don't get rid of anonymous posting. It amuses when I am accused of being IPVM staff... or at least I think it's happened before. The irony being, I am much betting looking than most IPVM, except for Ethan "Baby Face" Ace.

If we get rid of undisclosed posting, then Avigilon employees cannot post. Ergo, undisclosed posting stays :)

In all seriousness, there's just no way we are removing undisclosed posting, it's a major asset to the site.

It's apparently a major annoyance to Avigilon, which is a plus right there!

Proudly posted NOT Anonymous.

And how do you post when you ARE Anonymous?

In all seriousness, I was introduced to Avigilon in 2009 and we immediately dropped Video-insight, and jumped into megapixel with both feet. I have owned my IT business since 1986, and I have never experienced better support - PERIOD, so I do tend to defend them in these forums. They go overboard to help, even when your hardware is DIY crap, and the installer has zero tech skills.

Proudly posted NOT Anonymous.

It sort of looks to me like the question, remember the question waaaay back at the begining before we all got off topic, was asked and as far as I can see there have been no others actually come forward and say "YES" to either; I have heard the same thing from someone, either directly or indirectly.

So the asnswer after all the postering and such is that this appears to be a one time thing, for whatever reason???

This thread turned out to be true... http://ipvm.com/updates/3030#post-68589

Those who can't innovate buy patents and prey on those who do. Be careful Avigilon kook-aid drinkers, this might be the next naked painted model at an Avigilon party.

John,

is the crybaby undisclosed comment above reflective of your professionism?

Heh undisclosed! Our company and our clients have been drinking that cool-aid since 2009, and in my opinion, haven't seen a product provides so much flexibility, and ease of integration. If you have something better, have your sales reps find me... That should be easy enough, and I'll give it an honest technical review.

Im curious as to what all the Avigilangelists think of their prescious brand now? Patent trolls, hate em!! Seems like Aviglion is getting desperate, or just playing dirty pool.