Warning: Case Studies Can Get You Sued

By: John Honovich, Published on Feb 24, 2015

What do 24 Hour Fitness, Barnes and Nobles and multiple hospitals have in common?

They have all been sued in the past few months, with their manufacturer case studies used as evidence. 

They join ~100 end users who have been sued in the past 2 years, something we first broke and covered here: Surveillance End Users Getting Sued by Hawk.

Case Study Suit Examples

24 Hour Fitness is being sued. Exhibit A in the suit? 3VR's CEO Letter Congratulating 24 Hour Fitness for Using 3VR.

Barnes and Nobles is being sued. Exhibit A in the suit? March Network's Case Study on Barnes and Nobles.

St. Joseph's Hospital is being sued. Exhibit A in the suit? Exacq's Case Study on the hospital.

The Power of Suing End Users

Understandably, you might find it horrible that end users are being sued.

But it works.

Get Notified of Video Surveillance Breaking News
Get Notified of Video Surveillance Breaking News

The typical patent lawsuit historically sued the manufacturer directly. That can take a long time and the manufacturer is often not highly motivated to settle nor publicize what is happening. 

Suing end users accelerates this.

The end user gets the suit. Legal or senior management passes it to the security director, wondering what is going on. Not surprisingly, security is stunned. Security then turns to their integrator trying to figure out what happened and why they recommended / installed a system that is getting them sued. The integrator is blindsided. Now both the user and integrator are angry at the manufacturer. The manufacturer needs to do something.

From the Hawk suits, we have definitely seen rapid responses, with numerous manufacturer countersuing and reaching settlements quickly thereafter. Also, related, see Sued For Using Axis Cameras, Settles With Troll.

Obviously, it is bad business to let your customers get sued so manufacturers become highly motivated to settle.

Risks of Case Studies?

You will need to decide how much of a risk this is for you. There are tens of thousands of surveillance case studies and maybe 100 end users have been sued. Plus, it's possible for the suer to find information on end user equipment selection without depending on case studies. 

Equally important, it is not certain how many other patent holders will seek a similar strategy, though given how well this tactic appears to be working, savvy patent holders would likely find this attractive.

Manufacturers Desire for Case Studies

Manufacturers, regardless of suits, will still want case studies. In an industry with a hundred (or more) companies selling something that at least looks the same as their competitors to the untrained eye, case studies clearly help convince / calm / justify purchasing a given manufacturer's products.

Unauthorized Case Studies

Most case studies are hopefully approved and authorized by the end users involved. Though, we are sure many are not. 

First of all, if you are an end user or integrator, make sure any marketing material a manufacturer puts you in is approved by you. IPVM is no stranger to this as it is something we have fought against as we have a strict no manufacturer promotion policy.

Be Aware / Get Discounts

At the very least, be aware of this risk and if you agree to those case studies, make sure to get something out of it.

1 report cite this report:

Arecont Pulls End User Marketing Claims on Jul 28, 2015
Manufacturers, you have to get explicit permission from end users and only state factually true claims about them. Arecont struggles to understand...
Comments (14) : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

ADT And 'The Defenders' Silent About Massive Complaints on Feb 14, 2019
ADT's largest dealer, "The Defenders" has been the subject of a massive number of complaints over many years and many forums, most recently a CBS...
NJ Law Requires Apprenticeship For Public Works Integrators on May 24, 2019
Few integrators do a formal apprenticeship program. However, now a NJ law is requiring any integrator on public works projects (such as state...
'Independent' Security Consultant Organization Sells Off Speaking Slots To Manufacturers on May 10, 2019
The International Association of Professional Security Consultants (IAPSC) have sold numerous speaking slots to manufacturers. This is part of...
Inside Look Into Scam Market Research on May 17, 2019
Scam market research has exploded over the last few years becoming the most commonly cited 'statistics' for most industries, despite there clearly...
Briefcam Buys Frost Award* on Jun 20, 2019
Frost 'awards' are well-known and widely disrespected. Now Briefcam is touting their win. The way it has worked for many years is that Frost...
Security Dealer 'Social Media Contractor' Program on Jun 25, 2019
A $20,000 video surveillance system can be yours for free if you are willing to post on social media about the security dealer. Good deal, bad...
Beware African 50,000 IP Camera Contract Scam on Jul 12, 2019
A “Nigerian Prince” scam for the video surveillance market is going around. You, or at least we, could be lucky enough to be the single bidder for...
Alarm Veteran "Demands A Criminal Investigation" Of UL on Oct 18, 2019
The Interceptor's Project pressure against UL continues to rise. Following Keith Jentoft's allegation that "UL Has Blood On Their Hands", Jentoft...
Verkada Salesman Falsely Alleges Competitor Bankruptcy on Jan 02, 2020
A Verkada salesman falsely told a large end-user that the user's VMS provider faced bankruptcy. Verkada management acknowledged the error to...
ADT Acquires Much Maligned "Defenders" on Jan 07, 2020
"The Defenders" has the dubious distinction of being ADT's largest partner and a long history of customer and employee complaints and...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Hanwha Wisenet X Plus PTRZ Tested on Feb 14, 2020
Hanwha has released their PTRZ camera, the Wisenet X Plus XNV-6081Z, claiming the "modular design allows for easy installation". We bought and...
PRC Warns Against China Video Surveillance Hacks, Hikvision Targeted on Feb 14, 2020
Hackers are targeting China video surveillance manufacturers and systems, according to the PRC's main cyber threat monitoring body. The hackers...
IPVM Conference 2020 on Feb 13, 2020
IPVM is excited to announce our 2020 conference. This is the first and only industry event that will be 100% sponsor-free. Like IPVM online, the...
Bosch Dropping Dahua on Feb 13, 2020
Bosch has confirmed to IPVM that it is in the process of dropping Dahua, over the next year, as both IP camera contract manufacturer and recorder...
BluB0X Alleges Lenel, S2, Software House Are Dinosaurs on Feb 13, 2020
BluB0X is running an ad campaign labeling Lenel, S2, Software House, Honeywell, AMAG and more as dinosaurs: In a follow-up email to IPVM,...
London Live Police Face Recognition Visited on Feb 13, 2020
London police have officially begun using live facial recognition in select areas of the UK capital, sparking significant controversy. IPVM...
Converged vs Dedicated Networks For Surveillance Tutorial on Feb 12, 2020
Use the existing network or deploy a new one? This is a critical choice in designing video surveillance systems. Though 'convergence' was a big...
Monitoreal "Completely Autonomous" Home AI Tested on Feb 12, 2020
Monitoreal claims to allow users to "see the things you want (people, vehicles, animals) and ignore the things you don’t”, using AI to distinguish...
Cisco Video Surveillance Is Dead, Long Live Cisco Meraki Video Surveillance on Feb 11, 2020
A dozen years ago much of the industry thought that Cisco was destined to dominate video surveillance. They stumbled repeatedly, failing. Now it is...
BICSI For IP Video Surveillance Guide on Feb 11, 2020
Spend enough time around networks and eventually someone will mention BICSI, the oft-referenced but only vaguely known standards body prevalent in...