Firearms Fake News of the Day: ShotSpotter Edition

“Silencers are regulated for good reason,” Linda K. Newell, Board Member of The Gun Violence Prevention Center writes at sltrib.com. “They suppress the sound of gunfire, muzzle the flash and make a weapon more accurate. They enable a shooter to communicate with an accomplice and fire more rounds before detection.”

Ms. Newell’s Op-Ed More silencers will make gun violence more likely doesn’t just rely on fantasy speculation, it veers straight into falsehood. Like this:

Many cities now have “shot spotters” that immediately alert law enforcement when a weapon has been fired, and that pinpoint the position of the shooter, allowing for a faster response time. Silencers render this technology useless.

Not true! If Ms. Newell had taken the time to Google “ShotSpotter Silencer” she would have discovered The Washington Post fact checker article Are firearms with a silencer ‘quiet’? in pole position. Here’s the relevant text:

“In regard to gun silencers, it is more accurate to call them suppressors, as they suppress the impulsive sound of gunfire, not wholly eliminate it,” said Ralph Clark, the chief executive of ShotSpotter.

“We have successfully if not inadvertently detected confirmed suppressed gunfire within our existing deployments. Although we have not formally tested the theoretical impact to our system, we intend to do some targeted testing in the near future.

“We believe we will have various options ranging from increasing our sensor array density to developing software/firmware to address the detection of suppressed gunfire if it were to become a widespread issue.”

If Ms. Newell had wanted to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth, she could have called ShotSpotter; their contact information is readily available.

By the same token, The Salt Lake Tribune could have fact-checked Ms. Newell’s editorial. And no: labelling bad information an “Op-Ed” doesn’t excuse a news org from spreading lies and disinformation.

comments

  1. avatar rick3 says:

    “And no: labelling bad information an “Op-Ed” doesn’t excuse a news org from spreading lies and disinformation.”

    So…does that mean that POTG can/should submit thousands/millions of Op-Ed pieces to all the local papers to correct this “disinformation”? Sounds like it to me…

    1. avatar BLoving says:

      You’re welcome to try.
      Any bets on whether the editor refuses to run your rebuttal?

    2. avatar Mack Elder says:

      So . . . Rick3 . . . Own a firearm now ? Ever own a firearm ? Ever hunted with a firearm ? Ever shot a firearm ? My guess is your answer is NO on all four counts ! ! ! If you have, I stand corrected and offer a mea culpa. Your comment, however, is the type that comes only from ignorant pantywaist wimps wanting to play God and tell others what to do in spite of Natural Rights and the law of the land – – – that’s the Constitution, to you in your ignorance . . .

  2. avatar Timothy says:

    Sad that this comes from my home state. Journalism is truly dead in this country. I mean, why would anyone hire writers too lazy to do basic information searches? And why would anyone hire an editor too lazy to double check claims? SLTrib, you are quite the failure of a paper.

    1. avatar Joe R. says:

      Woefully ignorant, yes. But, it’s intentional ignorance.

      1. avatar Darkstar says:

        Bingo!

    2. avatar Carrucan says:

      I don’t send *email* messages unless I am sure of the information contained in them. How does this OP-ED get published? The editorial staff has an agenda. I’d like to see them allow an opposing opinion. I am positive it will be well researched with sources.

      1. avatar Illinois_Minion says:

        Facts don’t sell. Sadly, sensationalism does. Rarely do the two cross paths.

        Or did I miss the /sarcasm tag?

      2. avatar raz-0 says:

        Most op-ed entries are shills. Either the op-ed page is super boring in which case it may really be filled with boring people genuinely writing in about boring things, but for the most part it usually stirs the pot on an issue. This means, historically, they get tons of mail and would have to actively search through it for one that agrees with the editorial board 100% which they seem to all the time. So they fake it or lean on their shills.

        Also, with the advent of comment sections, why wait in line. Which increasingly means that the op-ed page is really just anonymized staff writers pretending to be real people.

        1. avatar Ing says:

          Plus, newspapers these days are rife with “native content” provided by third parties who pay for the privilege of writing something that redounds to their benefit while looking to the untrained eye like something the paper’s own journalists might have produced. (I’ve written some of said content myself.)

  3. avatar Zeke says:

    Yet more proof (as if we needed it) that the lefties only get their gun “information” from stylized depictions in movies. Then, to compound the stupidity, they turn around and preach their BS notions as fact.

    I will never understand how people this dense can be regarded as “authorities” on ANY subject.

    1. avatar MyName says:

      Only because the people who do regard them as authorities are even denser.

      1. avatar KCK says:

        “more dense”

        1. avatar MyName says:

          touché

    2. avatar Darren P. says:

      …….well I read that “silencers” make guns invisible so cops can’t find them when law abiding citizens are doing drive by shootings, and silencers make the bullets like curve through time and space so you can shoot people in the past or future. These dangerous space weapons need to be kept of the streets………..or so I read.

  4. avatar MyName says:

    They absolutely have to be engaging in the “tell a lie often enough and it becomes the truth” practice by now. How many times do we have to debunk the notions that A) suppressed weapons aren’t silent, B) criminals aren’t suddenly going to start doubling the price of their gats by adding silencers and C) the report of a gunshot is not a significant tool used for crime prevention.

    Either they are so stupid they do not know these things or they are so dishonest that they say them anyway. Either way, I see no point in listening.

    1. avatar James says:

      They are both stupid and lying. Lazy possibly too. As has been said to me many times, “‘Embrace the power of ‘AND'”. It’s all about the narrative.

      1. avatar MyName says:

        “AND”. Fair comment. Noted.

      2. avatar Ing says:

        And ignorant. They’re not too dumb to figure this stuff out, they just don’t want to. They don’t know how it really works, and they like it that way.

  5. avatar Joe R. says:

    “They enable a shooter to communicate with an accomplice and fire more rounds before detection”

    They enable a shooter to retain a better portion of their sense of hearing after discharging their firearm indoors in protection of their family and home.

  6. avatar Danny says:

    Gun control is the issue that makes Democrats sound just as stupid as Young-Earth, Conversion-Therapy, Border-Wall, Chinese-Climate-Hoax Republicans. It’s the issue that really lets us liberals fly our stupid flag, like we are on a late-night Fox News chat show.

    1. avatar PK says:

      Gun control has been seriously hurting the appeal to the base, lately. Enough video games, movies, and other exposure to guns, and ownership/interest seems to be making gun control into a very toxic issue for both parties.

    2. avatar Dan in CO says:

      Keep talking smack Danny, you’re hoisting yourself up by your own petard. At least I know what mental disorder to call it, “liberalism” (progressiveism).

      1. avatar El Duderino says:

        Would that make him “petarded”?

    3. avatar Chadwick says:

      A border wall is as dumb an idea as gun control? Canada… and the horse you rode in on.

    4. avatar Hank says:

      Look at how well open borders worked in Europe Danny. Liberals don’t need gun control to make them look stupid. CNN all by itself is doing a bang up job at that.

  7. avatar Joe in NC says:

    Idiots! They are mufflers more than “silencers.” They were originally banned to prevent poaching during the Depression when folks were shooting game out of season to feed their families. Never let it be said that a Democrat studies history. Socialism works! It just hasn’t been implemented properly yet. Kiss my ass.

  8. avatar Joe R. says:

    Libs need to just face it.

    We know they want to oppress us with their tyranny.

  9. avatar Rand says:

    God knows the first thing I do is look for muzzle flash when something goes down…..hilarious. If anything, a suppressor will probably make shotspotter more accurate without all of the echos that follow a report in areas with a lot of buildings.

  10. avatar Jon in CO says:

    We need to get our people on their outlets. Us posting written pieces and videos debunking the subjects is only pandering to our base. We need to get over their wall, storm the castle, and show them on their playing field, that they are wrong. Until then, we will just keep up with the same perpetual circle that we are in now.

    1. avatar Joe R. says:

      That’s right. We can’t just let fake news die on the vine, we have to click-support it long enough for us to kill it.

      /sarc

      1. avatar Jon in CO says:

        Ideally what I’m saying is we need people from places like Silencerco, AAC, Gemtech, to get on MSNBC and have debates with these people, get on their networks, their sites, their podcasts and vlogs, and start explaining things.

        1. avatar Joe R. says:

          No, I get it, and didn’t mean to come off like that, but I still don’t believe it’s a worthy cause, some patients can’t be saved.

          What if you had stage three cancer. How would you try to get rid of it? You’d damn near have to kill yourself with surgery, radiation, and chemo, in the hope that it dies first.

          THAT’S where we’re at.
          Don’t wait around or drag it out to stage four.

  11. avatar John in TX (Was CT) says:

    muzzle the flash

  12. avatar Joe R. says:

    WE ARE THRU THE LOOKING GLASS PEOPLE

    This is fake news attempting to get us to get behind “ShotSpotter”.

    It’s a B.S. Onion.

  13. avatar tiger says:

    Is there a hidden influx of 00 agents with silenced PPK’s running around?

  14. avatar Chadwick says:

    Sl trib is a libtard publication. I see no coincidence that they are pushing this narrative. For one they are as I just stated, libtards, and for another they are targeting Mike Lee. I suppose their readership numbers weren’t low enough for their liking. Utah has a lot of cali and Nevada commies, but there are also a whole lot of people who are tired of the fake news bs. Keep it up libtards. Your rating have only one direction to go.

  15. avatar Hannibal says:

    Suppressors probably wouldn’t be picked up correctly by shotspotter, shotspotter’s claims notwithstanding.

    But it doesn’t matter because shotspotter is stupid anyway. It’s funny, though, that the same people who are using taxpayer money to put it everywhere (liberals) are the same ones who don’t bother to read what it claims to do.

  16. avatar Chip in Florida says:

    “…They suppress the sound of gunfire, muzzle the flash and make a weapon more accurate. They enable a shooter to communicate with an accomplice and fire more rounds before detection.”

    Bwahhahaaahaaaaa! Haaa haaaaa¡

    Haaa hàaaaaà¡! MwahhahaahzzhzzHaaa

    *Snort*

    Mwhsshaagsaaaaaaha aaaaaaannndddd

    Haaa

    Stop!

    Haaagaghhsaaaaaf

    Your killing me!

    *Snort*

    Mwhaaahaaaahaa

    Haaa…..

    Mmmmmmmm

    Bwhaaaahaaahsaaaaa!

  17. avatar Guardiano says:

    silencers are silent

    men in wigs and dresses are women

    hillary is trustworthy

    1 in 4 women are raped

    97 percent of scientists agree

    the second amendment doesn’t say what it says

    abortion is in the constitution

    santa is real

    1. avatar Daily Beatings says:

      Women only make 78 cents on the dollar…

      17 intelligence agencies agree…

      White privilege…

      Hillary has a 92% chance of winning…

      Cultural appropriation…

      Hate speech is not free speech…

      Toxic masculinity…

      Wikileaks colluded with the Russians…

      The Hijab empowers women…

      Memes threaten democracy…

      Milk is racist…

      1. avatar Marcus (Aurelius) Payne says:

        War is peace

        Freedom is slavery

        Ignorance is strength

        1. avatar Guardiano says:

          Islam is the Religion of Peace

      2. avatar Joe R. says:

        Equality is me having to equate myself to you.

        A yellow ribbon means bring the troops home now.

        The UN Is a multi-national force for good.

        GOD can be equivocated.

        Babies can be chopped up and sold for food.

  18. avatar Daniel Hoover says:

    Real proof of what suppressors really do are needed.
    Lets go on CNN and let the do their on-air broadcast while some shoots a gun. See what people watching can hear.
    Then do another broadcast with a suppressor on the same gun and see what people watching can hear.

    I say suppressors improve accuracy about as good as me peeing in the dark and trying to hit the toilet.

    1. avatar strych9 says:

      Suppressors can improve accuracy substantially. My 5.56 can cut the pattern of one of my uppers in half.

      1. avatar Snatchums says:

        What is the physical cause for that anyway? Is it because you don’t have so much of a blast wave kicking the back end of the bullet asymmetrically just as it leaves the muzzle?

    2. avatar Big Bill says:

      Unfortunately, because the sound system in studios compresses the sounds, a gunshot wouldn’t be anywhere as loud as you’d think it would be.
      Then, a suppressed gunshot would be almost as loud to the listener at home.
      It’s sort of like wearing an amplified set of hearing protectors. You would hear the normal speaking of people, but the gunshot sound would be, um, suppressed. Then, the suppressed gunshot wouldn’t be suppressed as much, so they’d sound almost the same. If that makes sense.
      The end result would be the listener not understanding the whole thing.

      1. avatar Ing says:

        This is actually a bonus. The few who would spot the inaccurate rendering of sound levels are probably already on our side. And if the people who watch it come away with the idea that suppressors don’t make any real difference sound-wise, who cares if that’s technically untrue? If it makes them doubt the other side’s claims, that’s good enough. It’s all just means to an end. (Sometimes you have to think like a leftist to beat one.)

        1. avatar MyName says:

          Unfortunately, their response is that if they do nothing then it does not matter if we keep them regulated.

          It’s a dumb position, to be sure, since anything that is harmless should be unrestricted. The antis position on silencers betrays their true position: Everything we don’t like should be illegal, everything we want should be mandatory.

  19. avatar strych9 says:

    I hate to admit it, but this op-ed is right.

    With my Osprey attached I’ve murdered eleventy-billion people in the last six months. That silencer is so good that not only has no one heard the shots by no one has noticed the billions of people that went missing.

    When it’s time to dispose of the corpses I screw the can on to my bulldozer and no one knows I’m making mass graves!

    1. avatar MyName says:

      How many multi-caliber clipazines per second did that require?

    2. avatar Klause Von Schmitto says:

      I wondered where all my neighbors went. You silent killing bastard you.

    3. avatar Scar Stigr says:

      Only eleventy billion? Man you need to get out more. These improve accuracy, shit, no wonder I miss sometimes.

  20. avatar Southern Cross says:

    I’ve often said half-jokingly and half-seriously that journalists and politicians should watch less Hollywood and more Mythbusters.

    Mythbusters debunked the “Hollywood silencer” myth years ago.

  21. avatar scooter says:

    My dear TTAG, how dare you counter thoughts and feelings with facts! Gasp!

    1. avatar Joe R. says:

      Cheap facts!

  22. avatar AFGus says:

    Did I read that right? Suppressors make guns more accurate? Did that moron really write that? Seriously!?

    Wow! Who’d a thunk it? All the ammo I’ve wasted at gun ranges practicing my marksmanship skills, when all I had to do was screw a can onto whatever firearm I happen to be using and I instantly become an expert marksman! My savings in not having to buy range ammo any longer will far exceed the tax stamp fees. How come nobody told me about this before? I’m really pissed now! ?

    /sarc

    1. avatar Sparky in WI says:

      Careful as there are plenty of guns folks who will say that very same thing. I can tell you in one PRS blog I belong to several members there will definitely tell you that a can made their rifles significantly more accurate. And you will not convince them differently in a debate on this. One shooter claimed his AR10 shot 3moa with his loads and no can… then became a sun-moa rifle post can with the same load. When I questioned that multiple shooters on the blog told me how it was well known, that this accuracy improvement does happen. Bottom line many shooters themselves do not understand the benefits of a can and what it can and cannot help you with.

  23. avatar John H Haley says:

    We are really “up against it” in the arena of media and public opinion. My own chief irritant/aggravation/pit-of-blatant-nonsense, both as to style (cheap emotional appeals) and content (stupid, wrong, insidious slander, or all three) is PSAs. They are always put on by some lefty outfit in conjunction with the “Ad Council,” and supported by the station broadcasting them, under the “community service” Requirement of the FCC. So, not only are they essentially free to these lefty do-gooder causes, they are required by our dear Government Regulators.

    I don’t think I have ever heard one on any subject that didn’t disgust me, and there are several running now that are anti-gun, or better put, anti-gun owner. They Always feature the voices or faces of young children pleading for safety and then a stern liberal adult voice informing gun owners that their responsibility is without end and absolute, a 24/7 obligation to the community, so “lock it up.”

    One obvious goal is to instill in the public mind a “no fault” rule for gun accidents. If it’s your gun, it’s your fault, no question of blame to be answered. You’re guilty – a criminal – because you own a gun. If you’re really, really careful with it you can earn your way to probation – well, nope, you can’t. You’re a gun owner and you didn’t listen to the voices of the children. Guilty as hell.

    If you have any doubt, note that the co-sponsor here is some outfit called the “National Crime Prevention Council.” Crime. Not safety or responsibility, Crime. Have a gun not locked up? You’re a criminal.

    Am I against safety or responsible gun ownership? Should I have to answer that? Insidious. Gun owners are responsible, as shown by the increasing number of guns out here with the decreasing number of gun accidents. These adds are unnecessary and their purpose is not safety. It is demonisation of gun owners, or scaring people into not owning guns for fear of the awful responsibility being imposed.

    And less guns equals what, troopers? I think that would be more crime, less safety. The Ad Council, like the Honey Badger, doesn’t care.

    When our children are young, some of us “childproof” our homes. Are the rest of us criminals? Do we become criminals when we eventually relax that “childproofing” attitude? If we miss a cabinet or a knife or some pills or a bottle of caustic cleaner are we criminals? There’s always hot water and hard surfaces, look at your bathtub! Where can you fall safely in a tub? Are your car keys locked up? The reality of life is that s**t happens. Always will. And singling out gun owners for no fault responsibility is wrong, and a blatant, ugly attack on innocent gun owners.

    The use of children to do this should be regarded as child abuse.

    1. avatar Jack Dismukes says:

      Responsibility lies with the parents. As my daughters were growing up, we made sure they knew where the firearms were kept, how dangerous they could be and how to safely handle them. We impressed upon them that ANY time they wanted to see or touch one, they had only to ask, but they MUST ask and let one of us supervise them. The girls are now grown, with children of their own, and admit they never had a desire to “sneak a peek” or show off to friends because the attraction of forbidden fruit was not there.

  24. avatar Geoff says:

    Lots of sarcasm! Love it.
    However, a suppressor actually can improve accuracy because of reduced recoil and one tends not to flinch when there is no big bang from the muzzle.
    And I think a suppressor may confuse shot spotter because when you only have a supersonic crack reverberating and echoing throughout a city environment it makes it harder to identify the source.

    1. avatar PeterK says:

      Eh, the crack still originates right at the muzzle. It’s not like the suppressor magically teleports the sound away somewhere else.

      The system is already setup to deal with the echoes/reverb which will happen anyway. Your other points are fair, though.

      1. avatar Geoff says:

        The echo off of buildings and things will mask the original source.
        That why a sniper with a suppressor will shoot from a place that will scatter the sound of the crack, making it harder to locate him.

        1. avatar Big Bill says:

          “The echo off of buildings and things will mask the original source.
          That why a sniper with a suppressor will shoot from a place that will scatter the sound of the crack, making it harder to locate him.”

          Shotspotter is computerized; it will take echos into account. A sniper isn’t worried about computers.
          But Shotspotter’s fatal flaw, response time, is still there.

  25. avatar Big Bill says:

    Shotspotter has a fatal flaw that most articles about it miss completely: Response time.
    It’s the same, no matter who or what makes a shots fired report. The fact that a Shotspotter makes the call can’t shorten the response time.
    Unless, of course, the department decides to make those reports a higher priority than a report phoned in by a resident/witness. But the only reason I can think of for that to happen would be an effort to make Shotspotter look good, while proving that they just don’t give a damn other wise.

  26. avatar PeterK says:

    Yeah these people long ago gave up caring about the facts. Which is why the “fake news” debacle is hitting them so hard.

  27. avatar Andrew Lias says:

    This whole article is fake news; We all know that for shotspotter to work on silenced firearms it would have to work on firearms period. It is a huge fraud that has been shoved onto the taxpayers.

  28. avatar Kevin says:

    They are not easy to use. Eight rounds through one and an asbestos, or similar, glove is required to remove a suppressor. The only suppressors this person has been in contact with ave been on TV or in the movies (or in a book, if he reads). None of the placing the weapon in a breast pocket after use.

  29. avatar Michael Clark says:

    Only in Goeble’s mind would a lie become the truth. All a country needs to do to contradict the Declaration of Independance (of which in it is rife with anti-slavery sentiments) and the Bill of Rights is change the ignorant people’s stand on the issues in political forum of a country (of which we have the majority). Mentioning before hand the anti-slavery sentiments while just ethical and morally sound, the political forum after abolishing federalism embraced the opposite with staments about the mark of Caine being a justified means to use slavery. Which if you are a Christian you will see such dehumanizing statement of the times as Anti-christ. But you have a immorale and unethical politically one-sided group or profession directing the political forum in this country. Time to cut the ties with the media who have abondoned journalism’s ethics. Cut your own swath for the news market ignore the ignorant prodominatley leftist media and support the ones who at least fact check, they are out there. This will either shut the ones that are blatently ignorant or if they adapt they will pick up their old ethos.

  30. avatar Peter says:

    Eleventy billion? Did you learn from a nazi group or something? I didn’t know anyone could kill that many people with just one gun! Look out ISIS!!!! I hope you’re going their way!

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