Awards Benefit Manufacturers -- Not Users

Author: John Honovich, Published on Sep 05, 2009

Awards assist manufacturers in selling products rather than identifying the best solutions for user's needs.

This is a growing concern as the number of awards are increasing substantially. This month [September 2009], both ASIS and Security Products jump into the awards game.

General Problems with Awards

A number of important problems with awards should be recognized:

  • Judging criteria is vague or non-existent (judges can choose whatever they think is 'best')
  • No testing of the actual products are performed
  • Information used to judge is limited to data sheets and marketing materials
  • Entrance is often constrained to those willing to pay the fees or buy a booth at the exhibit
  • No information is ever provided on why the awardee won and the other participants did not
ASIS Accolades
 
ASIS promotes its new Accolodes award program as "an incredible marketing opportunity that will give [vendor's] valuable exposure and recognition."
 
Vendors submit basic product information and answer 4 questions. Judges review the submissions and then pick winners.
 
While the submission fee is only $250 USD, only exhibitors may enter (which usually a minimum of $8,000 USD for a booth) [see entrance rules].
 
ASIS states this benefits security professionals by helping them identify new and innovative offerings. Certainly, the mission of ASIS is to increase "the effectiveness and productivity of security professionals." However, how does limiting awards to only exhibitors help security professionals?
 
And why did ASIS choose BRS Labs - a company that has zero public proof of their extremely difficult claims?
 
And where is the public explanation of why these companies were selected and others were not? Just a list of companies? Would not security professionals benefit from greater information and details on strengths and weaknesses?
 
Security Product Magazine Awards
 
Security Products is running a "Product of the Year" awards program. In this program, there are 7 award categories [see entrance form]. [Update 9/16: An earlier version stated that there were 43 categories based on an e-mail I received from Security Products. In a new message, Security Products states there are only 7].
 
The Security Prodcut "awards will be given at the discretion of the judges" without any criteria provided.
 
In its media kit, Security Products clearly states their objective is to be, "the marketing partner that [vendors] can depend on to help generate leads and increase sales." With so many awards and such little objective criteria, this program accomplishes that.
 
Integrators and Users Must Speak Out
 
These programs exist because they can take advantage of the trust that people have in the honesty of others.
 
If each of you raises questions or objections when manufacturers brag about these awards, these awards will go away. Nothing motivates manufacturers more than the fear of losing business. 
 
We Need Meaningful Awards
 
Awards can be useful if they measure criteria that are meaningful to users. For instance, best camera in low light (measured at a specific lux level, F stop, object reflexivity, etc.) or best tripwire detection (measured based on FAR, FRR, ROC, etc. in specific weather, lighting and environmental condiitons).
 
Measure what's meaningful and publish the details so everyone can see and verify.
 
Until we do this, we are basically choosing the fastest swimmer by looking at photos of people in their underwear.

1 report cite this report:

Riskiest Companies 2009 - BRS Labs and TimeSight on Sep 09, 2009
BRS Labs and TimeSight are likely the riskiest video surveillance companies. With extensive marketing campaigns and multiple awards received from...

Related Reports

ISC East 2018 Mini-Show Final Report on Nov 16, 2018
This is our second (updated) and final show report from ISC East. ISC East, by its own admission, is not a national or international show, billed...
ASIS Offering Custom Research For Manufacturers on Nov 15, 2018
Manufacturers often want to know what industry people think about trends and, in particular, the segments and product they offer.  ASIS and its...
Axis: "No One Wants To Buy A Camera" on Nov 09, 2018
Axis has, in its own description, made a bold declaration: The industry is changing so rapidly that the following statement might seem bold but...
HID: Stop Selling Cracked 125 kHz Credentials on Nov 05, 2018
HID should stop selling cracked 125 kHz access control credentials, that have been long cracked and can easily be copied by cheap cloners sold on...
Wyze Explosive Growth Disrupting Consumer IP Camera Market on Oct 30, 2018
Wyze, a company founded only in 2017, is poised to disrupt the consumer IP camera market by combining American marketing and Chinese manufacturing...
Directory of Access Control and Intrusion Startups on Oct 30, 2018
This directory catalogs access control and intrusion detection startups IPVM has found noteworthy. The directory is provided for your review to...
IPVM Launches Best New Product Awards on Oct 25, 2018
IPVM is launching its own Best New Video Surveillance Product Awards in 2019. The goal is to provide the industry with a legitimate program, based...
Geutebruck Company Profile on Oct 22, 2018
Geutebrück has been in business for nearly 50 years, but they are not well known within the US surveillance market. In this report, we profile...
Knightscope Winning Investors, Struggling With Growth on Oct 16, 2018
While Knightscope's new financials show the company only winning 11 new customers in the past 12 months, the company continues to win new...
Huawei Admits AI "Bubble" on Oct 16, 2018
A fascinating article from the Chinese government's Global Times: Huawei’s AI ambition to reshape industries. While the Global Times talks about...

Most Recent Industry Reports

'Sticker' Surveillance Camera Developed (CSEM Witness) on Nov 16, 2018
The Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (CSEM) has announced what it calls the: world’s first fully autonomous camera that can be...
ISC East 2018 Mini-Show Final Report on Nov 16, 2018
This is our second (updated) and final show report from ISC East. ISC East, by its own admission, is not a national or international show, billed...
Facial Detection Tested on Nov 16, 2018
Facial detection and recognition are increasingly offered by video surveillance manufacturers. Facial detection detects faces in an image/video...
Throughtek P2P/Cloud Solution Profile on Nov 15, 2018
Many IoT manufacturers either do not have the capabilities or the interest to develop their own cloud management software for their devices....
ASIS Offering Custom Research For Manufacturers on Nov 15, 2018
Manufacturers often want to know what industry people think about trends and, in particular, the segments and product they offer.  ASIS and its...
Hikvision Silent on "Bad Architectural Practices" Cybersecurity Report on Nov 14, 2018
A 'significant vulnerability was found in Hikvision cameras' by VDOO, a startup cybersecurity specialist. Hikvision has fixed the specific...
French Government Threatens School with $1.7M Fine For “Excessive Video Surveillance” on Nov 14, 2018
The French government has notified a high-profile Paris coding academy that it risks a fine of up to 1.5 million euros (about $1.7m) if it...
Integrator Credit Card Alternative Divvy on Nov 13, 2018
Most security integrators are small businesses but large enough that they have various employees that need to be able to expense various charges as...
Directory of Video Intercoms on Nov 13, 2018
Video Intercoms, also known as Video Door-Phones or Video Entry Systems, have been growing in the past decade as more and more IP camera...
Beware Amazon Go Store Hype (Tested) on Nov 13, 2018
IPVM's trip to and testing of Amazon Go's San Francisco store shows a number of significant operational and economic issues that undermine the...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact