Originally Posted by ajhuff
AJ, this was meant for everyone. There's a lot of product pushing going on in our little knife world these days that's sort of subliminal and not so transparent. I thought I'd talk about it and maybe even recruit someone to do some of it for me but in a more forthright manner than what we've come to know. I'm going about it a little different because I'm doing it out in the open, versus under the table, so it comes off as weird and confusing I guess.
Anyway, the offer still stands for the right person. I'd like someone who is respected in the community, a prolific multi-knife forum poster, with exceptional knife skills, someone who likes to be in front of the camera, who wants to pimp my knives and maybe even some other products all over the interwebs specifically the other knife forums, YouTube, blogs, Twitter, and Facebook pages of everyone known to us. I'm just looking for the same type of product shill that I see being used by other people.
No inside joke here at all.
I don't know about the concept of a honest to goodness shill being a good idea. Very early on I was part of the small group that did give Mark feedback on some of the knives he was bringing into the store. Think I reviewed a Hammered Damascus Takayuki, a Chroma Haiku, and some other entry price Shun-wannabe-competitor. He'd ask if I wanted to review a specific knife and if I said yes, I paid whole-sale price plus shipping and wrote up what I thought, with no expectation of a good review, just a review. Half of what I wrote was essentially "Okay knife, but not for the price. Find it for 50% off and maybe." I'll concede that at the time I probably shouldn't have been writing sh!t as I didn't have has as much experience with or knowledge about knives as I do now, but I'm pretty sure I'd still stand by what I wrote I think. And I'd like to believe I wasn't overtly swayed by the discount.
Dave if you're talking about a situation like the above, then I think that's fine. You're essentially trading for the person's time, but leaving full editorial control with them. If they're swayed by the value of the trade to have a more favorable opinion... it's something to consider, but I don't think it's bad practice or bad faith on your part. Paying someone to essentially be your mouthpiece with mandates of good reviews, types of review, etc... well essentially you're asking for someone to be your Sham-wow guy. Even if they are a respected member of multiple communities, given that you're doing this out in the open, I'm not sure how long that respect would last... I mean, Sham-wow...
I've already got one of your blades. I'd be more than happy to do a detailed write-up and provide it to you, and I'm sure others would be happy to do videos. (I'd do vids, but lets be honest. I can't even seem to figure out how the heck to take pictures properly. How do you think I'd fare with videos?!) But I'd prefer to retain editorial control, as would most of your customers, I'd think. If you're confident in your products, I don't think you'd have anything to worry about. Only reason I could think of that you or anyone would pay for a shill is if you weren't confident in the products you sold.
Just my $.02
@Dave: All Mark does is ask so and so to check out a knife. Some people like to do videos and photos. Some people write their reviews. Visual will trump the written word. (for the masses anyway)
Mario did the same. But I told him I wanted to do a video. He didn't expect it.
You may or may not have noticed I'ved stayed away from the "********" line. Also I bought every knife I received from you know where.
Originally Posted by bprescot
Ben, thanks for the offer to do a review but that's not necessary although appreciated.
On the subject of reviews (in general) I'm happy with any feedback I can get on any level be it private praise or public criticism - I truly mean this. I thank all of you who have helped me over the years in this regard.
Senior Member/ Internet Hooligan
Hmm. Long thread, lots to think about. I liked it a lot more when people were just making fun of SoulFly3174 or whatever that stooge's name is. What a clown.
That's where it gets dicey. It's hard for the pot to call the kettle black.
That dude is probably the biggest reason I don't go to KF much anymore. The only clear feeling I have about the shill idea is disgust. Why don't you do a passaround requiring video and pictures be posted in specific places?
Originally Posted by Vertigo
I'm cool with people doing most any knife videos, although my personal preference is the educational genre, but whatever they may be I hope that people will always post their vids. I'm not in love at all with the product sales videos though, these I can do without. But yeah it's great that some of you guys like doing videos, we all get to share your experiences and enthusiasm and how great is it to see someone using a new knife for the first time? I know I like checking them out.
Originally Posted by Salty dog
I won't comment on Mark but I'll make a general statement and say that maybe asking a person who is known to make favorable videos or reviews to check out a knife isn't so different than just coming out and asking them to hook them up because it's pretty much known that they'll do that anyway.
Hey you guys are friends and that's what friends do, I'd like to think that I'd do the same in your situation.
Originally Posted by Salty dog