The Yolo Bro And The Death of Journalism

Author: John Honovich, Published on Apr 24, 2018

There's an old quote:

The job of the newspaper is to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable

Unfortunately, the opposite is more typical in the security industry, and it is getting worse, as print dies out and old school publications turn to increasingly embarrassing means to make money.

Meet Steven Karantzoulidis, web 'editor' at Security Sales and Integration (SSI) magazine. Karantzoulidis most recent publication was a slideshow on 7 Awesome Pens Given Away at ISC West 2018, in which he praised Axis' pen, declaring 'this baby was built for performance':

And ZKTeco for those who 'want a pen with cool biometric symbols on it':

Unfortunately, this is not a one-off. Slideshows are Karantzoulidis's go-to-move, with his ongoing surveillance videos series of shootouts, brawls and drug dealing:

Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox
Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox

Slideshows - Cheap To Make, Lots of Ads

While slideshows offer little value to users, they do have two upsides for publishers: (1) They are cheap to make - it requires minimal expertise and research. Simply gather pictures or videos, write a few comments and done. (2) Becuase the reader/viewer needs to click for each image or video, the publisher gets up to 10x the amount of advertising impressions of a conventional single page article.

YOLO Bro

Karantzoulidis has made it clear he has no shame about what he does:

Laughing about pens and liquor store shootouts and batteries blowing up in people's faces is Karantzoulidis's thing.

Journalists "Partner" With Manufacturers

He is no outlier. This is how SSI operates. Even worse is that SSI has started recently, in their own words, being a 'partner' with manufacturers as this ongoing series with Dahua demonstrates:

It is bad enough that trade magazines, in this industry, overwhelmingly re-run manufacturer press releases or conduct 'interviews' where the manufacturer gets to say whatever they want. SSI has taken it to the next level of publicly partnering with them.

Fabricating Monthly Audience

Despite partnering with manufacturers and running these slideshows, SSI still resorts to massively fabricating their total monthly audience.

With SSI's 'methodology', you could claim to be 12 feet tall by summing the length of each arm and leg to your height. The most absurd part is adding up website users with website pageviews since, by definition, pageviews are performed by users, making it guaranteed that the 110,087 is fabricated 'audience'. Moreover, the deception exists with combining different newsletters, social media 'followers' etc.

And SSI knows this is fabricated, they add in fine print at the bottom that effectively admits as much:

As if they could not 'attempt' to identify or eliminate 'duplication'.

Bad For The Industry

The industry needs more organizations doing real research, reporting and criticism. Both end users and integrators would greatly benefit from better information.

And even us, who may benefit from this state, would like to see more alternatives for real journalism. As is, being 'alone' makes it easy for the manufacturers to portray us as an outlier, and that the normal and correct way things should work is 'partnering' and pandering to advertisers.

Print media is, no doubt, dying but that does not mean the future must be yolo bros.

2 reports cite this report:

SSN Publisher Quits, Starts New Print Trade Magazine on May 11, 2018
After a decade as the publisher and face of Security System News (SSN), Tim Purpura has joined the UK's Hand Media where they are starting a new...
Bogus Research Plus Lazy Reporting - SSI And 'Global Market Insights' Examined on May 07, 2018
If you wonder why there is so much obviously wrong information online (factually, not simply disagreeing on opinions), this is a great example of...
Comments (28) : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

Securadyne CEO: IPVM 'Entertaining For An Ignorant Few' on Apr 16, 2019
Securadyne's CEO Carey Boethel is unhappy with IPVM's report - Failed Integrator Rollup, Securadyne Sells to Guard Giant Allied. Indeed, he...
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...
"At Hikvision, We Build Trust" on Jan 03, 2019
Hikvision has joined a growing number of video surveillance manufacturers marketing their trustworthiness. In a recent trade magazine full page...
Scam Research And The $86 Billion IP Camera Market on Dec 19, 2018
Scam. The most widely cited research numbers in many, if not most, industries come from a growing number of Indian 'market research firms'. We...
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...
Genetec Takes Aim At 'Untrustworthy' 'Foreign Government-Owned Vendors' on Sep 24, 2018
Genetec is taking aim at 'untrustworthy' 'foreign government-owned vendors'. This is not a new theme for Genetec as nearly 2 years ago, Genetec...
Hikvision Covers Up Racial Profiling And AI Error on Jun 25, 2018
Faced with global scrutiny, led by the US government-funded Voice of America (VOA), Hikvision has covered up evidence showing their racial...
Hikvision Corrects False Cybersecurity Announcement on Jun 18, 2018
Hikvision has corrected a false cybersecurity announcement that claimed a British government-sponsored program endorsed the cybersecurity of...
The Dumb Ones: PSA's Bozeman On Cybersecurity on Jun 15, 2018
The smart ones are the hundred people who flew to Denver and spent $500+ on a 1.5-day conference featuring (now US government banned) Dahua as a...
Dahua's Terrible Cybersecurity, Buys Credibility From PSA And SIA on Jun 04, 2018
Dahua has a terrible cybersecurity track record. But American organizations, like the Security Industry Association (SIA) and the PSA Security...

Most Recent Industry Reports

H.265 Usage Statistics on Apr 19, 2019
H.265 has been available in IP cameras for more than 5 years and, in the past few years, the number of manufacturers supporting this codec has...
ACRE Acquires RS2, Explains Acquisition Strategy on Apr 19, 2019
ACRE continues to buy, now acquiring RS2, just 5 months after buying Open Options. One is a small access control manufacturer from Texas, the...
Access Control Course Spring 2019 - Last Chance on Apr 19, 2019
Register for the Spring Access Control Course. IPVM offers the most comprehensive access control course in the industry. Unlike manufacturer...
Riser vs Plenum Cabling Explained on Apr 18, 2019
You could be spending twice as much for cable as you need. The difference between 'plenum' rated cable and 'riser' rated cable is subtle, but the...
Verint Victimized By Ransomware on Apr 18, 2019
Verint, which is best known in the physical security industry for video surveillance but has built a sizeable cybersecurity business as well, was...
Milestone Drops IFSEC on Apr 18, 2019
Milestone has dropped out of Europe's largest annual security trade show (IFSEC 2019), telling IPVM that they "have found that IFSEC in EMEA no...
The Fastest Growing Video Surveillance Sales Organization Ever - Verkada on Apr 17, 2019
Verkada has the fastest growing video surveillance sales organization ever. In less than 2 years, they already have more salespeople in the US...
Door Operators Access Control Tutorial on Apr 17, 2019
Doors equipped with door operators, specialty devices that automate opening and closing, tend to be quite complex. The mechanisms needed to...
Securadyne CEO: IPVM 'Entertaining For An Ignorant Few' on Apr 16, 2019
Securadyne's CEO Carey Boethel is unhappy with IPVM's report - Failed Integrator Rollup, Securadyne Sells to Guard Giant Allied. Indeed, he...
Dahua Repositionable IR Multi-Imager Camera Tested on Apr 16, 2019
Dahua has released their first repositionable multi-imager camera, the Multi-Flex 4x2MP, claiming integrated IR, true WDR, and flexible...

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