E-mails to Hi-Point and to MKS Supply

Update 2011-08-01: I have received a reply from the President of MKS, in which he acknowledges the problems with the press release and takes personal responsibility. You can read his response here.

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MKS Supply distributes for Hi-Point, Chiappa, and Tuff1 Grip Covers.

I have only been able to find contact information for Hi-Point that does not obviously go directly to MKS. It is an email address for warranty and repair information, so in my email I ask that it be forwarded to the appropriate person in Hi-Point’s corporate organization. Contact information for Chiappa and for Tuff1 Grip Covers all goes directly to MKS.

Emails are below the fold, if anyone else wants to use them.

My email to Hi-Point:

Subject: Complaint regarding your distributor, MKS Supply

To: info@hi-pointfirearms.net

Dear Sir or Madam:

I am sending you this e-mail to make you aware of a significant and serious issue that has arisen with your distributor, MKS Supply. I understand that this email address is for warranty and repair information, but the only other contact information I could find is directly to MKS Supply itself. I ask that you please forward this to
the appropriate parties within your company. I am sending MKS Supply a separate email on this subject.

Recently, a minor controversy came up regarding Chiappa Firearms, an Italian firearms manufacturer whose products are also distributed in the U.S. by MKS Supply. Chiappa has apparently decided to install RFID chips into its Rhino revolvers for inventory control purposes. While this has prompted a generally negative response in the online firearms community, neither the appropriateness of the chip nor the community’s response to it are at issue here. The primary issue is MKS Supply’s response to the community’s concerns.

This press release by your distributor, as published at The Firearms Blog, Ammoland.com, and Downrange.TV (links provided below), is condescending, insulting, and openly mocking of the community that comprises a significant, vocal, and popular portion of *your* customer base.

Please immediately take the necessary steps to address this massive public relations blunder committed by your distributor. A community-driven boycott of all MKS Supply distributed products is not unthinkable, even at such an early point in this fiasco. The attitude shown by MKS supply is simply inexcusable. However, because this is still a very early point, if the situation is appropriately addressed now, the damage to your company caused by this distributor can still be minimized, and possibly eliminated altogether.

Because I am not certain of your specific relationship with MKS Supply beyond the fact that they are a distributor of your products, I cannot suggest the most appropriate course of action. However, I urge you do quickly determine what that course should be, and to take the necessary steps as soon as possible.

Very truly yours,

Jake [LAST NAME REDACTED HERE]
(https://cursesfoiledagain2.wordpress.com)

Link to The Firearms Blog post on this issue: “http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2011/07/29/chiappa-adding-rfid-chips-to-their-guns-mks-suggests-concerned-consumers-wrap-the-revolver-and-their-head-in-aluminum-foil/”

Link to Ammoland.com post on this issue: “http://www.ammoland.com/2011/07/28/rfid-chip-in-chiappa-firearms/”

Link to Downrange.TV post on this issue: “http://www.downrange.tv/blog/rfid-chip-in-chiappa-firearms-whats-up-with-that/10945/”

My email to MKS was sent to their President, Vice-President, Director of Operations, and their general information address.

To: cbrown@mkssupply.com, kwalton@mkssupply.com, kvanhoose@mkssupply.com, info@mkssupply.com

Subject: Your recent press release regarding Chiappa’s RFID chips

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Dear Sirs:

I am sending you this e-mail to make you aware of a significant and serious issue that has arisen with your company.

Recently, a minor controversy came up regarding Chiappa Firearms, an Italian firearms manufacturer whose products you distribute in the U.S. Chiappa has apparently decided to install RFID chips into its Rhino revolvers for inventory control purposes. While this has prompted a generally negative response in the online firearms community, neither the appropriateness of the chip nor the community’s response to it are at issue here. The primary issue is MKS Supply’s response to the community’s concerns.

This press release by your company, as published at The Firearms Blog, Ammoland.com, and Downrange.TV (links provided below), is condescending, insulting, and openly mocking of a community that comprises a significant, vocal, and popular portion of your customer base. The most damning part reads: “RFID Removal: For those still concerned you can simply remove the grip and remove the hot glued RFID from the frame in the grip area when (over a year from now) these begin to appear. Others may prefer to wrap the revolver and their head in aluminum foil, curl in a ball and watch reruns of Mel Gibson’s 1997 film, Conspiracy Theory. Well, that’s a plan too!” [emphasis mine]

Such contemptuous language towards any customer is simply inexcusable. It is even more so when it is directed towards an entire segment of your customer base. Though it had been my intent to purchase a Chiappa Rhino as soon as I could, I no longer plan to do so unless this issue is properly addressed. For the record, my issue is not with the RFID chip, but with your company’s response to the concerns of others.

Please immediately take the necessary steps to address this massive public relations blunder committed by your company. A community-driven boycott of all MKS Supply distributed products is not unthinkable, even at such an early point in this fiasco. The attitude shown by this press release is simply inexcusable. However, because this is still a very early point, if the situation is appropriately addressed now, the damage to your company, and the companies you distribute for, caused by this ill-advised and insulting press release can still be minimized, and possibly eliminated altogether.

I have sent a separate email directly to Hi-Point to make them aware of this incident and my concerns. Unfortunately, I have not been able to locate contact information for Chiappa and Tuff1 Grip Covers that does not go directly to your company.

Very truly yours,

Jake [LAST NAME REDACTED HERE]
(https://cursesfoiledagain2.wordpress.com)

Link to The Firearms Blog post on this issue: “http://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/2011/07/29/chiappa-adding-rfid-chips-to-their-guns-mks-suggests-concerned-consumers-wrap-the-revolver-and-their-head-in-aluminum-foil/”

Link to Ammoland.com post on this issue: “http://www.ammoland.com/2011/07/28/rfid-chip-in-chiappa-firearms/”

Link to Downrange.TV post on this issue: “http://www.downrange.tv/blog/rfid-chip-in-chiappa-firearms-whats-up-with-that/10945/”

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