Censorship, and rumors of censorship...

To be truthful, I found Knifeforums first, and really enjoyed it. For me, Blade forums came in second for the longest time, just because I went to the other site first. But recently I have been finding myself over here more and more, and now it is actually the homepage my browser pops up to when I connect. My only explanation is that the "atmosphere" here is lighter, and there seems to be less tension. That and there is about ten times the posts here than anywhere else. I want to thank Mr. Turber, Spark, all the moderators, sponsors, and most af all, the forumites for making this (as someone else put it, I cannot remember who) "and oasis in the wasteland of cyberspace" or words to that effect.

I have dealt with rude bastards in chat rooms, IRC, newsgroups, and other places on the web. I have yet to meet any here. You guys are cool.


Thank you for your admission, and for your capacity for learning and improving. We should all strive to be so mature. I, for one, hope the matter is closed, and that we will all refrain from jumping to conclusions or over-reacting in the future. Communication... and most specifically, taking the time to clarify information before reacting... is vital!

You say that it is not a free speech issue. Probably right.
But I would recommend that you follow some of the more recent posts , "over there " by Cougar Allen. He seems to have the whole copyright thing under control. If he has it right, moderators who edit posts are in breach of copyright legislation, pretty much world wide.Private forum or not.
His posts are quite long and my attention span is not what it used to be but he has almost convinced me. Persistence will do that.

Now , I carry no brief for the man....he (IMO) left me swinging in the breeze when I supported him on the other forum....but he could be correct.

Just think we are all better off with the truth than comfortable opinion.

Brian W E
ICQ #21525343
MONEY- spend it before it's gone.

Nobody has to jump through a hoop of any kind when posting on knifeforums, the poorly veiled insinuations in the form of self-congratulations by the administrators of these forums for its relative harmony notwithstanding.

I am guilty of nothing beyond taking a questionable and careless action in a single case.

I have openly admitted my mistake, though it was made with honest intentions and good will, with only the best interests of the entire community of knife enthusiasts at heart.

I have stated how I intend to conduct my role as moderator differently in the future.

Earl Stewart has stated his understanding of the concerns of the complainants, and his wishes that moderators not edit messages in the future.

There has been an absolutely free discussion of the whole situation ON KNIFEFORUMS!

But the reality of the situation is of no importance to a few people.

I feel pummeled by the whole bruhaha. Who has more appreciatively and enthusiasticly taken advantage of the free exchange of ideas about knives over the Internet than I? Who has more happily immersed himself in the community of knife enthusiasts than I have?

This has hurt me.

I HAVE NO DESIRE TO STIFLE ANYBODY'S IDEAS OR EXPRESSION! ZERO! NONE! I have no business interest in knifeforums. I am only doing my best to nurture constructive discussion within the minimal guidelines of responsible and non-inflamatory expression. Earl, and I, and virtually every moderator are gun nuts, knife nuts, or both. Who has a greater stake in Constitutional rights than we?

There is only ONE person, who has the slightest justification to complain about my actions as moderator. Up until yesterday, I considered "Cougar" Allen, my comrade. Now he has openly insulted my intelligence, and appears to hold me in the greatest contempt. Why? Because I light-heartedly edited a post wherein he indirectly advocated an illegal practice to another member, who could have been a minor for all he knew. Did I act with vehemence, or even indignation? Was he banned or threatened? NO! I made a joke of it and put a smiley on it! Cougar never once emailed me to question the necessity of my action, or to reasonably voice his opinions in such a way as to give me an opportunity to make it right with him. That is the courtesy he has requested from moderators, yet he did bother with it himself.

That is not fair to me.

So those few persons who want to hammer this into the ground can procede knowing that it is now quite clear to an objective observer that it is not free expression they are persuing, but a means of venting their own personal animosity toward the administration of knifeforums. The good will of Earl and myself has been spurned by them. There is no honest justification for their animosity.

Steve Harvey
Moderator of the General Knife Discussion Forum on www.knifeforums.com

PS - I am deeply grateful to those who have expressed support for me personally (James and Mark), and for those who have expressed approval of the official response from knifeforum.com regarding this issue. In these more emotionally charged threads, thoughtful people often tend to step back, read and consider, while the majority of the posts are from those with more polarized points of view. Your words have been a great comfort to me.

PPS - Thanks "Buddenator", whoever you are. You have provided a couple of perfect examples of the character of the recriminations hurled against Earl and knifeforums. I couldn't have imagined better.

[This message has been edited by Steve Harvey (edited 27 January 1999).]
I would like to go on record saying that both Steve Harvey and Joe Talmadge have been very generous with their time and knowledge both on Knifeforums and here on Bladeforums. In fact, both have been kind enough to reply personally to my knife questions. I do not favor censoring posts, however, you cannot ask a man to do more than what Harv has done in reconsidering the incident and agreeing to correct it. WHAT ELSE IS LEFT TO DO, except to thank him for his efforts and get on with the task at hand of talking about knives.

Steve - first let me say that I have the utmost respect for your knife knowledge and love of the industry. I've learned many things from you over the last six months and I'm most appreciative. I also appreciate your duties as a forum moderator, and the difficulties you've had to go through over the last several days. I firmly believe that you had no malicious intent in altering Cougar's thread. Hopefully, we'll all learn a little something from the events that have transpired.

However, I must comment on several points you made. You said, "Nobody has to jump through a hoop of any kind when posting on knifeforums..." How about the administration of BladeForums? These guys seem to have to jump through hoops to post on your site. Once they do post, their posts are summarily deleted. They allow you guys to freely post here, but the same courtesy isn't reciprocated on KF.

"I am only doing my best to nurture constructive discussion within the minimal guidelines of responsible and non-inflamatory expression." "...So those few persons who want to hammer this into the ground can procede knowing that it is now quite clear to an objective observer that it is not free expression they are persuing, but a means of venting their own personal animosity toward the administration of knifeforums. The good will of Earl and myself has been spurned by them. There is no honest justification for their animosity."

Do you think that the following statements, made by the KF administrators, are non-inflammatory, full of goodwill, and not valid reasons to harbor some level of animosity?

"Most of the folks who raise the most fuss, are just a handful of people. Their allegiance is to another place, and they take this, and any other opportunity to stir up a problem..."

"More interesting is to take a look at WHO the instigator ALWAYS are... Go over and take a gander at the IRQ. They come from the same place!"

"The guys you hear are the 12 or so from the other team that are in the crowd shouting the loudest."

"Mr. Edginton, if you are uncomfortable here, as I see you have much more to say on other forums (not necessarily painting us as your favorite)...and I would say that maybe if you're running out of forums, maybe the problem is YOU...you are welcome to bow out any time. If that bothers you, someone can have your share. It won't be the first time.
I'll tell you what. I've got a way to fix BOTH your issues. I'm gonna delete you from participating in this forum, by eliminating your profile completely. Should YOU make the decision that you'd like to keep POSTing rather than just reading, you may re-apply (as I will not prohibit you from reestablishing...as can be done). What this will do is force a cookie revision on the client (you) when you log in like it was the very first time, and for all intents and purposes it should fix your cookie problem. It will also give you the opportunity for us to "see your tailights" if you so choose. The choice is yours."

"I might even have to ask some of them to leave the site after hearing what they have to say. I would do this because I think it makes more since to remove a couple of bad apples, before we allow them to spoil the whole barrel."

"After reading all of the posts in question, I now am starting to think that the dozen or so members I was referring to, don't have a whole lot to do with their spare time. I for one think this whole thing has been completely blown out of proportion, by a select few who have an obvious agenda and only post here when they find an opportunity to criticize or complain... rather than to contribute something positive to the discussion of knives. Which, is the real reason that we are all here, just in case you forgot!

While I appreciate your attempts to put this whole issue to rest, these statements would seem to indicate complete disdain for some of KF's own members and their opinions. I don't hold you responsible for statements that they made. I just want you to realize that responses like these from them do nothing to further their stated cause, "to contribute something positive to the discussion of knives..." This attitude seems to be pervasive “over there.”


P.S. - This UBB code for italics is really making me mad.
I guess if I weren't so anal, I wouldn't have to edit my post three (!) times to correct the italics.

[This message has been edited by Senator (edited 27 January 1999).]
Steve, I think personally you do a very good job as a moderator, and you've had a pretty rough time. I have very different opinions about the people ultimately running that site, however, and remember, I have ample personal experience.

The point is, however, that this site is this site, and that site is that site. I'm not here to pass judgement on anyone, it's not my job. But, if we have basically the same audience at both sites, and one has more problems than the other, then something is obviously being done wrong. It isn't nuclear science, rocket science, or even a Mr. Wizard experiment.

Steve, the simple fact is that this argument keeps coming up over and over and over again. I had to handle it when I ran KnifeForums.com, and now that I am no longer there, it still is occurring. This time, it managed to spill over onto BladeForums.com

In life you can blame others for your problems all you want, you can play "ostrich" if you choose. Pretend it never happened, until the next time it does. But give me a break already. "Poorly vieled insinuations"? What are we insinuating? If I want to insinuate something, I'll say it in the open so there is no mistaking what I mean, thank you.

Steve, I have yet to see one person call you out personally for being a bad guy. Many have taken issue with you for editing the post in question, and right or wrong you have to lump it. Take the experience, learn from it, and grow with it, and use it to become a better moderator.

I have, on the other hand, seen more than several instances of ill will and displeasure with the operation as a whole. Multiple people have stated that threads dissappear without notice when they disagree with the status quo, or question a maker in favor, or otherwise don't agree with the owners of that site. I've seen it happen, Mike's seen it happen, everyone else has seen it, so denying it's existance would be a pointless exercise. I also get emailed threads containing poorly veiled insinuations that are quiet nasty when you look at the.

That seems to be the core problem that the other site is facing, and since the issue comes up quite regularly, it'd be stupid to say that it's without merit. No one said it's Steve Harvey's fault, they are saying it's a bigger problem.

Again, however, it isn't my business anymore, I don't run the other site. I don't post there, not since I made my promise publically not too. See if you can find that thread, and read it for yourself.

But please don't come onto BladeForums.com saying that we are attacking you in particular, when the facts just don't back you up. You know that isn't true, and you also know we have no need to attack anyone.

I sincerely hope that you, and everyone else, can work the problems out and move on. But do me a favor and leave us out of it: we didn't cause what's going on, and we have nothing to do with it. If you want to discuss a problem and want help finding a solution, we'd be happy to help. But leave the blame for the problem somewhere else, just like it's not your fault, it isn't ours either.

Or, as the saying goes "You make your own bed, and you have to lie in it"

Now, I'm glad to hear that everything is getting patched up over there. Let's all move on and learn from it, instead of pretending that it never happened, ok?


Kevin Jon Schlossberg
SysOp and Administrator for BladeForums.com

Insert witty quip here

I took your forum to 6,000 posts without ever editing the first post and only deleting a couple do to commercial reasons. I, more than anyone here, know what you are going through and I applaud your efforts to come to a conclusion so life can go on. In watching your posts over time it seems like you are taking all of this personally. I would suggest that you take a deep breath and calm down as it appears to be over.

I have no hidden agenda here to take advantage of the situation which is going on over there as you have implied. The problems over there are no fault of mine nor your own. I left there for many reasons however I harbor no ill will to Earl and wish him much success. He really is a cool guy and I do like him. In fact I will most likely see him next week and we will probably laugh at a few issues and discuss others which have not been clearly understood by either party.

The idea for these forums was mine long before RDK, CFK&T Forums and now KnifeForums. Each time someone ran a forum I found myself at odds with how the administrator wanted it done. Therefor I felt the need to do it myself even though I clearly did not have the time. This forum is the result of many hours of hard work on my part and that of Spark's.

I will not stand here and be insulted when you say I am self congratualatory.

Am I proud of my efforts here?
You betcha....
Do I pat myself on the back?
No I pat the backs of the members here like yourself who make this place what it is.

Please put this issue to rest. People here enjoy this site for the simple fact we do not do the things which are done elswhere. Does this mean we are right and KF is wrong? No it just means we are different, more relaxed and laid back maybe but definitely different.

Best Regards,
Mike Turber
BladeForums Site Owner and Administrator
Do it! Do it right! Do it right NOW!

[This message has been edited by Mike Turber (edited 27 January 1999).]
Well Spark, there you go again. To you, the issue is this site is better than that site. No problems here, problems there. That is not the issue. The issue is censorship, and how a member's case was handled, and the fact is, as of today, it was handled to the member's satisfaction.

The personal problems between you, Mike, and Earl are none of my business. I didn't take sides, and I don't take sides. You have a nice site here that works real well. I find it enjoyable to read and post here myself. What got you and Mike banned from knifeforums is between yourselves and Earl. Nobody else knows the true facts, and nobody else should judge either party to the dispute.

When Mike started his thread, saying censorship will never happen here, I let it pass, though where I come from there ain't nobody stupid enough not to recognise that for what it was. Then it was "...we should not gloat in the demise of others." Ain't nobody, nowhere stupid enough not to know what that is. So I made a calm and reasonable post that what was going on was my fault, not Earl's or knifeforums in any larger sense, and was being handled very openly. There was no "demise". That brought us to this thread and jumping through hoops.

I know gloating when I hear it. This is your house, so in a way, I guess it is your right, and I would be foolish to expect different.

But there are a lot of reasonable, good folks out there that I would like to have the knowledge that, setting aside the debacle between you, Mike, and Earl, setting aside those who are more interested in flaming than knives, there are good people on knifeforums who want to do the right thing, and are trying to do the right thing. You said it yourself, this site is bigger than any one person, and so is knifeforums. I am being trod under not only the weight of my issue with Couger, but also under the weight of the Spark, Mike, Earl feud, which I have nothing to do with.


[This message has been edited by Steve Harvey (edited 27 January 1999).]

I wouldn't want to put this to rest without congratulating you for the fact that this site works very well. You have set out to make this an open and comfortable place and you have succeded without it turning into a toxic flame site. As you say, the members deserve much of the credit for that. To be honest, I think your policy of generally anything goes as long as it isn't nasty is the best policy. I think we have moved in that direction ourselves in the last couple of days.

The similarities between moderating styles are really more remarkable than the differences. After frogman's Dalton post, the moderator, or Spark, or somebody made a comment. I edited out the personal insults in what I thought was a non-confrontational, even humorous way. Same post in both forums, raised eyebrows in both forums. How the moderation was done was the difference, and that was MY mistake. It had nothing to do with knifeforums the site, or Earl Stewart. Then certain parties got filled with indignation and started butting heads and it was knifeforums vs. bladeforums.

You are right about me taking it personally. I did not become moderator over there because of a choice between the two forums. Earl asked. So when people start attacking knifeforums, due to personal conflicts from the past, they are also attacking the well intentioned people who are part of knifeforums but had nothing to do with the split. I guess I am just a sensitive, '90s kind of guy.

Lets not do this anymore. Lets all join the American Knife and Tool Institute and be friends.


I can't put this to rest without acknowledging the strength and reasonableness of your arguments. They speak for themselves for the most part, but let me try to temper them somewhat. Earl read all the posts, and in the end, he sided with those who took issue with having their posts edited. He stated that it will hereafter be his policy to never edit a post, and that he hoped that all his moderators would do the same. Threads were locked in one forum, and that got some people's shorts in a knot. They seemed to get them untwisted though when they realized they could say whatever they wanted in the appropriate forum. We all have unique personalities and some are more confrontational than others. I try to be more retiring, but it was me that got everyone all upset in the first place. So being layed-back isn't always enough either.

Earl, Ty, and I, and most likely I can speak for all the moderators on knifeforums have the same wish that Mike and Spark have for bladeforums, we want everyone to feel comfortable there, and that includes some of our more distinguished members who through their experience, and willingness to share knowledge, have earned a measure of deference. We want the site to be great, and we are going about it the best we can, learning along the way.

Thanks for your gentle words.


I know you are light hearted and very kind man. I am as well and those who know me also know I tend to laugh these things off. This is not to say I don't take them seriously. It is just that life is too short for all to get upset over what really amounts to nothing.

My original post was in response to several emails I had from more flavorful members who really have a dislike for what has happened in the past and they where basically asking me if I would give them the go ahead to post. I knew this would be nothing more than a gloat so I told them to let me post a preemptive strike, so to speak, to head off the attempts. In retrospect I see how my post may have been somewhat gloatfull (if that is a word) in it's own right. For that I am sorry.

Now lets move on, have fun and talk knives!

Best Regards,
Mike Turber
BladeForums Site Owner and Administrator
Do it! Do it right! Do it right NOW!

Hey Honey, come here... Hurry up!!! Look at this. He called me reasonable. Said I used "gentle words." No, really! I'm not making this stuff up. Come see for yourself...

Steve - thanks for your kind words.

I agree with Mike. Let's move on from this mess. So, when's that Spydie/REKAT collaberation gonna be available....


[This message has been edited by Senator (edited 27 January 1999).]
Since my post above the discussion on Knifeforums continued without any attempt to censor it and we have now reached agreement. I am very satisfied with that agreement and the way the discussion proceeded, and I think everyone involved is satisfied with it.

I think things will be different on that site henceforth.

Steve Harvey wrote one of his posts above while in the middle of a discussion that grew heated at times -- we've reached an agreement now and I didn't see that post until now, so I'm not going to respond to it.

As I've said before, and repeated in the most heated parts of that discussion, I think Steve Harvey is a good moderator. The incident that started the discussion was perhaps not of vital importance in itself, but the discussion it began concerned principles we all feel strongly about and that's why it grew heated at times.

I did not post support for Brian Edgington and I apologize for that, Brian. The reason I didn't was I was in the middle of a heated discussion of another issue at the time and I didn't want to come across to the administrators of that site as someone who jumps on them about everything -- at one point I even threatened to delete all my old posts from Steve Harvey's forum if I wasn't assured they wouldn't be altered without my knowledge, and under the circumstances I just thought it wasn't a good time to simultaneously get involved in another controversy with the same people -- I thought I was being intransigent enough for the moment, not to say pigheaded (excuse me while I go powder my snout). It was purely a strategic decision and I apologize for it.

I am active on a number of forums and I personally can't see any point in talking about which I like the best or even deciding which I like best -- I am active on several and I don't have to pick just one. If I am not active on a forum it's probably because there are so many forums and so little time -- there isn't any knife-related forum I'm boycotting. Sometimes I post a suggestion to try another forum than the one I'm posting in, but that doesn't mean I think that forum is better than the one I'm posting in; it only means I think it's worth a look.

I would have been happier if the discussion had never spread beyond the site where it belonged, but it did, so I'm posting this just to set the record straight.

-Cougar Allen :{)

[This message has been edited by Cougar Allen (edited 28 January 1999).]