Editorial- Followup on your feedback

As a followup to my editorial- Speaking My Mind a few issues need further addressed and clarified in light of some of the comments I have received. Thanks for taking an interest and sharing your thoughts with me.

1. I am fine with criticism. Moreover, as long as it is rendered in gentlemanly (or womanly, as the case may be) fashion, you are free to express your thoughts here at CNJ.

2. It seems as if my comments were incorrectly construed to have been defending sham artists (crooks, fakers, and folks who intentionally deceive others) as a result of a link posted on BladeForums.com and that topic’s context.

3.  “Discouraging collectors from asking critical questions about the knives they are considering purchasing, discouraging them from obtaining the advice, recommendation and opinion of experts, and discouraging from learning as much as they can about the core of their hobby is the art of the flim-flam artist, the huckster, and the cheat. Shame on you.”  

I accept this charge although it wasn’t my intention to discourage collectors from doing their due diligence. 

4. “With talented fakers out there like Brett Van Winkle, vigilance must be heightened, yet you, a collector yourself promoted a “don’t worry-be happy” attitude.”  

Point well taken. I stand corrected for overemphasizing that point.

5. The burden of detecting fakes is our own individual responsibility. We have no NKCA police. I have publicly blacklisted sellers before and will continue, if I know it first-hand.

6. I am not saying we should accept a seller’s word on the authenticity of a knife as the gospel.

7. I will not accept a dealer not having a responsibility for a knife being authentic before he sells it to a collector, unless he disclaims it at the time of sale. (Sorry for the double negatives there. A dealer has a responsibility to judge the knife he is selling and then disclaim it, if it he believes it to be a fake or rework.)

8. As I said, “There has to be balance. Our hobby is not healthy if we feel we have to approach every knife as if it has been worked on.” I am talking about collectors attitudes here, as opposed to trying to discourage due diligence.

9. Furthermore, we are to examine knives with the knowledge we have armed ourselves with. Ultimately, we are the sole individual who has to be satisfied as it its condition and authenticity. If you have been collecting for very long you will agree that oftentimes even the experts won’t agree, so you must be satisfied with your purchase.

10. Our hobby/industry will continue to suffer folks quitting collecting because they have lost confidence in their ability to judge a real knife from a fake. And while you may say, “Hey Serrah Serrah (whatever will be will be)” let us be reminded our interest should be to promote collecting as a hobby, not run collectors off. (I am not saying that collectors should be given lobotomies just so we can have “peace and get along.”)

11.  This remains true- “It would be a very sad commentary on the state of knife collecting, if every knife we looked at required us to go through a 20 Step Checklist to determine if it is a fake or not.” I am not saying a collector shouldn’t do due diligence, only that it is sad that it has come to that point.

12. This remains true- “I am not naive here and know there are fakes out there. Nor, am I saying we should blindly accept everything a seller tells us, BUT, therein lies the problem. There has to be balance.”

13. And finally, this remains true too- “We must have confidence in the system or it all breaks down.” No new collectors will come into old knives if our hobby, or any other, is fraught with corruption. It will be the beginning of a slow death. 

14. One of the root causes (I didn’t say the only cause, but definitely one of them) is the knife collecting industry’s insistence on a knife’s condition. As long as “the establishment” continues its mantra “collect only mint knives,” we are going to continue to have folks “fix’n up” knives to satisfy that demand.  (Yes, I know the other cause is greed on the part of the counterfeiter.)

15. Your “Take up your arms and fight against the folks who are faking knives and are hurting our hobby” spirit came through loud and clear guys and, contrary to what you took my position to be in my first article, I am with you on that.

Published in: on August 27, 2008 at 4:18 pm  Leave a Comment  
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