Is XP team USA sacrificing their Honor, dignity and honesty in their quest for more sales?
Before I go any further I want to state that I absolutely have no issue with XP metal detectors.
Back in April of 2018 I was asked to do a podcast with a big announcement concerning XP. I learned they wanted to announce the formation of XP team USA and to be truthful I couldn’t have been more pleased. An opportunity for my All Metal Mode Podcast to be the platform where it would first be announced seemed like an honor and I was happy to do it. The show went good and I was really happy for the team, it sounded like a great idea and I was excited to hear them talk about their vision for the team.
Little did I know it wouldn’t be long before I would regret my decision to let them use my platform for their big announcement. It wasn’t long after that I saw several people posting on their Facebook venting about how often they kept getting added to the XP team USA group. It seemed as though they were off to a bad start and definitely frustrating some people.
After that it was rumors I was hearing, things like someone at the top of the team leaving and not allowing access to their social media accounts and Youtube channel. Other rumors I heard consisted of people being censored and even blocked from the XP team USA group for the simplest of reasons. I was hearing enough negative comments that I became concerned enough that I wouldn’t have them back on the podcast.
No longer welcome on my podcast
After all the negative information I had collected I had decided I could no longer support XP team USA in anyway. Again, I have no problem with XP metal detectors or some of the people involved with the team. Unfortunately a podcast episode got scheduled with Gary Blackwell and I found out at the end Dave Dinatale would be coming on towards the end to give an update about XP team USA. I must admit I wasn’t happy about it but I decided to proceed with it.
At one point on the all metal mode UK podcast Dave DiNatale made a statement that upset me very much. It went something like this “ We’ve had to make some changes with the team and have had to get rid of some people who just wanted free stuff and didn’t want to work for it.” My information leads me to believe this is a lie.
The final straw
Several years back I wrote an article about “metal detecting saved a life” it was about a friend who I mentored. I taught him how to use his Minelab E-trac metal detector and taught him how to relic hunt in the fields of Ohio, I over laid maps for him and even taught him how to himself. With over Forty articles published in metal detecting magazines and many more published on my blog this was the article I was most proud of. It was about a friend that I took under my wing and shared my knowledge with. I helped mold him into a great detectorist who felt like the experience changed his life. It’s been very rewarding for me to watch him grow into an accomplished relic hunter and even join the XP USA team.
The pleasure I derived from all of that all came to an end just a few short weeks ago when I saw a video posted to the XP team USA Facebook group titled “how metal detecting and XP Deus saved my life.” To be honest I was floored, I needed some time to think about this before I decided to respond in the group. My response to the group is in the next paragraph:
“This is really disappointing to me. Several years back I wrote the article “metal detecting saved a life” I was proud to show him the joy of hunting those Ohio fields, nothing about this story has anything to do with a particular brand of detector, in fact, he wasn’t even using an XP Deus back then. Sad to see this story pushing an agenda now”
It is very disturbing to see this story used as a tool for publicity by XP Team USA. It’s unthinkable that they would take a story about the triumph of the human spirit and turn it into a promotional piece to further their agenda!
Almost instantly I was verbally attacked by one of the team members after I posted my response. I tried keeping it very civil and polite while trying to get my point across that I thought it was unethical that the title of my article had been changed to pursue their agenda. Before I knew it I was banned from the group. No big surprise, I had already heard that they are quick to do so. One of the things that Dave DiNitale told me is that I should have mentioned this in messenger and not in the group. Fair point but Dave should have asked my permission before they changed the title.
The big surprise came when DiNitale messaged me through facebook verbally attacking me. We exchanged harsh words in the course of several messages back and forth before deciding to just drop it. After our conversations I hoped that the problem with the title would be remedied but nothing happened over the next few days. I decided after how things went with Dave I would reach out to someone else in the hierarchy of XP. I quickly explained the situation without all of the details and asked that the title be changed. I went on to explain no one had the right to change the title of my article for their agenda and I wanted it corrected. I got a reply that simply stated “sorry to hear you are not happy.” I waited a few hours and re-contacted the person asking if it would be changed, that was over two weeks ago and no reply has been received nor has the title been changed.
One of the things that has stuck with me the most in my exchanges with DiNitale was his first message to me after my post to the group. In it he ended his message with “I won’t speak for anyone else but you’re done in my book.” Because of all of this XP team USA has made me regret writing that article and I truly regret letting them announce the formation of the team on my podcast.
I want to make it clear that although this article is obviously about XP team USA I don’t have anything against most of the team members. Honestly I don’t know most of them and the only people I have a problem with are the three XP team USA members who verbally attacked me over this. I know who I am and what I’m willing to fight for. In the end I hope the title is corrected. The article was never written to push an agenda, a brand or anything else. It was simply an honest effort to help my fellow detectorists. I hope to see XP metal detectors exert more of a positive influence on the XP USA team. Currently I believe the team is doing more harm than good. I hope XP team USA or at least those in charge will get their priorities in order, make the needed changes and re-think how they conduct themselves in the future.