Should IPVM Post Only MSRP Pricing?

This was raised in Down to $50 IP Cameras From Honeywell

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I did this to answer a member's request and happy to discuss.

But we will continue to post 'real' pricing to support our analysis of trends and comparisons of products.

One, there is so much 'real' / online pricing widely available that MSRP is fiction. Two, we need to understand actual pricing because it is key to understand where the market is going and which products provide more value.

John, please define "real" pricing for me. Is it dealer cost or customer cost?

Real primarily means to me publicly available pricing, e.g., on the Internet / online.

This is beyond ridiculous! Of course you should. If anyone on IPVM thinks there are end users on IPVM that don't know how to get real prices you are a sadly mistaken.
There is this thing called the "internet" with this site called "Google".... Also, Who pays MSRP for ANYTHING related to security devices, but especially cameras?

If you have clients that you are charging MSRP (or over), congratulations and you better milk them for all they are worth because those people are dinosaurs and will no longer exist very soon.

So, an end-user wants to know how much we pay for the parts we sell them... should we be surprised or impressed that you are so forward thinking and transparent?

pretty sure that same statement has been said every year in every industry, by the way.

Funny, I dont see on your company site where they put out the hard costs to manufacture your chairs...

Funny, I dont see on your company site where they put out the hard costs to manufacture your chairs...

In fairness, hard costs to manufacturer (i.e. COGS) is not the question. The question is MSRP vs street vs dealer pricing.

Herman Miller pricing is all over the Internet as well as having their own store online.

but it is in question. Distributors sell to integrators, who then resell. Their SALE or DEALER or (too often) STREET price is my (and most people on here's) COGS.

Being that IPVM does not stop end users from becoming members (and I don't necessarily feel that they should) has IPVM ever thought about making it that certain Articles, or Discussions can be flagged either by IPVM or if a discussion, by the poster to be for Pro members only rather then all members?

I understand that it may limit end users from becoming a member, but it may make certain members more comfortable talking about pricing etc...

On a side but connected note, how many non "pro" members does IPVM have?

David, all members are 'Pro' members. I actually might remove that terminology because it does cause some confusion (i.e., who is a Pro vs non Pro member).

But one think we won't ever do is block end users from certain topics.

Thats the reason why I didnt want to use the word "Pro" but I was figured most would understand what I am saying.

I am split regarding this. On one hand I am very into making knowledge open for all and making it easier to find out info. I made use of it many times myself when I was trying to do repairs around my house.

On the other hand, I can see where a Pro (someone in the business) would want to be able to discuss some aspects with other Pro's without worrying that an end user who knows how to use google can find his own words and use it against him.

Pro (someone in the business) would want to be able to discuss some aspects with other Pro's without worrying that an end user who knows how to use google can find his own words and use it against him.

Agree, ironically integrators overall are far more afraid of their manufacturer partners seeing their posts on IPVM.

Of course, that is one of the main reasons why we built the undisclosed commenting feature, so people in this small industry could share information more confidently.

If you are really a fan, why not simply ask me why I made it public? Why assume the worst motivation?

Can you expand on this? This idea is foreign to me.

I dont think you should put pricing of flyers, email blasters, price lists, that werent mean to be publically displayed on IPVM at all. If a particular ad was only supposed to go to a certain customer group, it should not be posted publically. I think this is borderline un-ethical. Would be similar to other sites copying and pasting information from this site in which only "logged in" were meant to see only to be copied and pasted to another site.

If any pricing info is publically displayed on the web or whatever without any signup info, then post away

If a particular ad was only supposed to go to a certain customer group, it should not be posted publically. I think this is borderline un-ethical.

Disagree. This is whole essence of journalism / news reporting. We don't try to resell or publish whole price lists. We selectively take noteworthy pricing and other information, providing analysis of it.

Would be similar to other sites copying and pasting information from this site in which only "logged in" were meant to see only to be copied and pasted to another site.

This is covered under 'fair use'. If you copy someone's book or report, then it's a violation. If you excerpt something and than provide new information, analysis, commentary, it is legal and ethical.

Yeah but isnt this a gray area? You posted the link to the ADI ad that was obviously only marketed to dealer customers. No-one would have gotten that ad unless "Signed Up" as a dealer.

What would be the difference of someone copying word for word an article on IPVM that only members could see, and posting it on their site, and then offering analysis of it?

As far as legality: Im sure the first example is not illegal and the 2nd example is.

What I am asking though is it ethical? I understand journalism should be tough and forthcoming, but this was kind of secret info only meant for dealers eyes. This is kind of a jab below the belt to ADI. What ADI should have done was to make some sort of NDA.

Its really not a big deal. This is a very small example and I could care less about ADI's feelings, but just thinking about puting my self in their shoes. We send out email blasters to dealer customers that our retail customers arent supposed to see. If that email blaster was seen by several of our retail customers, we would be in a pickle by being asked to price match to customers on stuff that wasnt even meant to be marketed to them.

You posted the link to the ADI ad that was obviously only marketed to dealer customers.

They sent it out to non-dealers, so it obviously was not only marketed to dealer customers.

No-one would have gotten that ad unless "Signed Up" as a dealer.

Again, no. I assure you non-ADI dealers got the email directly.

And as for posting a link, it is a link on the Internet. If ADI wanted to restrict it to dealers, they could have easily require signing in to one's ADI account. But they didn't.

What would be the difference of someone copying word for word an article on IPVM that only members could see, and posting it on their site, and then offering analysis of it?

Copying any article word for word is not fair use. But copying excerpts, which is what I did and providing commentary is fair use.

For example, you can write an article on your site excerpting a paragraph from IPVM and commenting on it. That would be fair use. Using it for commercial purposes (like buy X because IPVM said so) would not because that is covered under the right of publicity.

Well if non-dealers could have had easy access to that then I see no ill will here.

I think this is perfectly reasonable, within the confines of the member areas.

In this case it was targeted to ADI customers only. However, I guess ADI has bad IT security practices and allows everyone with a link to view it. So I believe it should not be posted.

While I do agree that anyone with good google-fu can find general pricing, the guidelines should be based off whether the advertised price is easily available to the public.

On the other hand, if a member posts a question for a price on a particular item, I see nothing wrong with other members responding.

I guess ADI has bad IT security practices and allows everyone with a link to view it

To be clear, ADI sent this out to non-dealers as well.

That said, we report things that are newsworthy and we get confidential information all the time. For example, us reporting on Genetec expelling Hikvision. Genetec did not tell us this. We found out about it through other sources. Just because Genetec or Axis or Hikvision or ADI does not want us to know something it is not going to stop us from reporting on true events.

If they did send it out to everyone then they should be ashamed of that and I then while I may not want it posted, I see no issue with it.

I definitely agree news should be posted whether they want you to know it or not. I think for example in this case, most members would be okay with a news post saying that ADI is now selling 1.3mp or even 3mp cameras for about $50 and going through all the details like your article does, but with leaving out the screenshot of the flyer or at least blocking out the model number. That way an end user cant stumble onto the article and be able to compare model to model.

That being said, as a general rule we don't mark up equipment (unless it is dealer only equipment) and we make our profit on the labor only.

If available publically, regardless of how and where, it is fair game. Dealers should be critical of ADI for their practices, not IPVM.

The two are not mutually exclusive.

But Yes, anyone buying from ADI should be bringing this up to the local branch manager...