Backstreet Surveillance Stories at Techdirt.
from really-at-the-service-of-your-company-at-full-capacity, -Scotty department
When a reporter sends out inquiries about allegations made on your website, obviously the best response is to threaten them with legal action. This should ensure a constant flow of positive press and deter them from asking further questions about the claims made on your website.
Oh, wait. This is the other thing. This ensures that you will at least temporarily be enshrined as a contentious asshole and thug, especially when the reporter only asks questions that any logical person might ask upon finding out about these allegations.
This is what just happened to Isabella Cheng of IPVM, a long-respected authority on security cameras and other video surveillance technologies. Here is just some of the IPVM credentials:
And here are the most relevant credentials of Backstreet Surveillance CEO Scott McQuarrie… er… as passed to the IPVM reporter after he emailed questions about the allegations made on the site. Backstreet. Keep in mind these were questions that Cheng was asking as well. other sellers of surveillance cameras.
The CEO of Backstreet Surveillance objected to questions from an IPVM reporter, warning the reporter to “bring this to your senior management, he [sic] it is important that they are involved because we will pull the trigger of a trial from the moment you refer [sic] me or my business in any article “in a long answer to questions about the company’s NDAA claims.
Scott McQuarrie might want to explain where in the US “SEO [Backstreet] Where [CEO Scott McQuarrie] in any article ”is legal action. I understand that the legal system will handle, however briefly, anything that is filed in court with a filing fee, but there is currently no (legal) way to prevent someone from referring to companies in articles, blog posts, tweets, Facebookery, LiveJournal fanfic or other.
The backstory barely explains the answer. IPVM was soliciting comments from several camera vendors on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) claims made on their websites. “NDAA Compliant” may look good on the product and referenced in the marketing copy, but all it really means is that the company isn’t. one of the few Chinese companies that have been blacklisted by the federal government. Complying simply means not reselling those products or using their components. Not that hard to do.
While it is true that there is such a thing as “NDAA Certified”, it is not much more than being “NDAA Compliant”. Any compliant manufacturer can easily become “certified” by completing and submitting sign a form indicating that you are not on the ban list and that you are not using components that are on the ban list.
Backstreet is making a big deal on these two things. This too wrote a blog post about these things, amplifying the company’s ability not to be a Chinese manufacturer banned by the US government. In this post, Backstreet calls out another company for claiming to be NDAA compliant when in fact it is owned by a Chinese company banned by the federal government. In this article, he uses this image:
It tells customers to “look for this logo”, pointing to the “NDAA Compliance” logo created by Backstreet. This message has been modified after IPVM has started asking questions. The original message told customers to “only buy material that displays the [NDAA] logo. “IPVM wanted to know what the” approved logo “referred to, as it is quite clear that the federal government did not create or distribute an” NDAA Compliant “logo. Instead, the camera manufacturers create their own logos, giving their products an air of (federal) authority without actually having a logo created by the government to denote their ability not to be part of a handful of Chinese manufacturers.
Before the late correctionBackstreet gave the impression that there was such a thing: a government-created logo given only to those who were truly NDAA compliant.
How do you know when you are purchasing approved and secure equipment? Only purchase equipment that indicates it is NDAA compliant and displays the approved logo.
Rather than simply apologizing or offering to get back to the reporter with more details, McQuarrie sent an email calling the reporter “incompetent” and “newbie.” [sic]. This followed his first email in which he said the reporter did not “understand” the apparent complexities of Backstreet’s “approved logo” claims.
After the legal threats came a correction – the one that could have been given as the first answer to the rapporteur’s questions:
There is no government approved NDAA logo. The logo we use on our site was created by us and is placed on all products on our site that meet NDAA requirements. This is done so that consumers know what items they can consider if the NDAA applies to them. The first single web page posts included the term “NDAA Approved Logo”. This was a mistake made by a novice programmer, as soon as we learned about the error the term was deleted.
A little late but better than what the CEO offered in response to press inquiries. And rather than just admit the mistake and walk away from it, the correction (prompted by the IPVM journalist’s questions) came with an additional direct review of the site that made the CEO aware of its fake. statements about the NDAA logos.
Why we published this information
We received an email from a reporter at IPVM, an online security magazine. While we welcome any inquiries and interest in our equipment and services, we were offended by the tone of his email and his lack of basic knowledge. We don’t like his prejudice and biased approach. She has given us until December 6 to respond as it is likely that she had already written the article and there are plans to publish it. The problem is, his ignorance of basic facts is already woven into his article. ISABELLA, YES THERE IS NDAA CERTIFICATION AND YES YOU USE A GOVERNMENT FORM TO DOCUMENT IT! It is amazing that a publication that bills itself as a security industry resource lacks such basic knowledge.
But the report had not yet been written. The reporter was still seeking comments from several companies. The report was never going to be all about Backstreet … at least not until Scott McQuarrie at least did this item only about him and his business. Guess this addition wasn’t written by everyone’s favorite scapegoat, an “entry-level” employee. Typos and grammatical errors oddly match McQuarrie’s cadence (shall we say) when responding to IPVM inquiries.
Appended to what appears to be McQuarrie’s furious keyboard pounding is an equally ludicrous “legal notice for IPVM”:
Posted on December 5 at 9:23 a.m. MST, documenting this factual information, IPVM was publicly available before IPVM published defamatory non-factual articles. All liability now rests with IPVM and all legal remedies for damages inflicted on Backstreet are reserved and will be exercised to the fullest extent of the law.
Well, no lawyer was consulted until it was angrily written. You can’t shift the responsibility just by adding a paragraph to a blog post. Responding in kind would require IPVM to “fully hand” at least one major to the CEO, who doesn’t seem to have the mindset to interact with the press, let alone hold a leadership role in a company that employs no one other than himself.
IPVM asked a few simple questions. The CEO could have answered questions and corrected any claims that were not entirely correct. It’s not that hard to do. Two other companies contacted by IPVM with similar questions responded as follows:
[V]Deo’s monitoring vendor, Clare Controls, responded “The use of the word certified is a mistake. Our policy is to declare compliance. This will be corrected immediately.”
Likewise, Verkada responded by saying that they “deleted the page in question” and stopped saying they were “NDAA certified”.
It does not appear that Backstreet is prepared to continue. (At least so far…) McQuarrie, having screwed up completely, decided to walk away with his undeserved smugness intact. Here’s how he responded to IPVM’s post covering its unfounded legal threats:
Wait, after watching what you’ve posted we’re pretty comfortable. This clearly shows your journalist’s bias and our concerns. If you wanted to provide more SEO links to our site so that we get as much profit as possible from the article, that would be helpful.
Oh, but it isn’t, Scott. It shows that you don’t know how to handle press inquiries and that you are willing to sabotage your reputation and that of your business because you believe that legal threats are an appropriate response to errors or misleading claims on the market. your business website. You’re not going to score Google juice in the IPVM article. SEO doesn’t work that way, especially since IPVM never links directly to your website. And neither do we. What will rise in Google’s ranks are your shitty legal threats in response to errors on your business website. You have to think before you speak. And, as the CEO of a company, you should probably consult with your company’s legal representatives before issuing legal threats.
Filed Under: isabella cheng, journalism, ndaa, reportage, scott mcquarrie, surveillance cameras
Companies: lane surveillance, ipvm