Offline CharlieDaTuna

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« on: June 16, 2006, 09:37:30 AM »
I realize that this is long but I ask you in all fairness to Gene and myself that you take the time to read it all. My intentions are to present our view and explanations in hopes this will clear up a lot of the confusion and misunderstandings that has occurred since the opening of GTA.

Much of what you read will be parts of information already submitted on the Crosman forum. I’m a two finger typist and slow and I have been typing for hours in the last day and a half so please bear with me.

First there are some apologies in order.
Regarding the invitational e-mail that was sent out.
I was the person that sent out the invitational e-mails inviting people to visit it this forum. I have a customer list of over 2100 people that has been compiled over the years. The letter of introduction to the Gateway to Airguns was sent to about 200 of them, either past customers or persons that I have been in contact with one way or the other in the airgun community. They were all in my customer data base plus a few contacts that were in my data base for some other reason. The introduction to the Gateway to Airguns forum invitation was not mass mailed out, but people were selected at random and the letter of introduction was sent to 6 or 7 people at a time. Not one single name was "harvested" (as some on the yellow forum claim) from the yellow forum and as falsely claimed by Steve, the Fun Supply forum owner or any other forum for that matter regardless what he has said. It is a complete falsehood. However, in retrospect, I guess my mistake was that I took the liberty to e-mail my "friends" or customers with what I thought was good news and something that they would look forward to and benefit from and with some degree of interest. But, I did it with out their approval. Let me say that if I offended you or you feel that I spammed you I’m truly sorry. It was certainly not my intent to scam anybody nor did I solicit anything from anybody but rather did nothing more than invite them to visit the new GTA forum.
The Misunderstanding regarding the “Terms and Conditions” and “Privacy Statement”.
This problem caused a considerable uproar and for many a great concern and rightfully so. For many years Gene developed E-Commerce web sites. The "Terms and Conditions" that everyone was discussing was a document used widely among developers for commercial web sites. Having never built a forum before, and without giving any thought or considerations of any repercussions simply used the "Terms and Conditions" document for the GTA just as he would have with any e-commerce website that he built in the past. That was a simple but big mistake; he now recognizes that it and it has been removed.
Gene also used the "Privacy Statement” there also, which is another generic document that is widely used in the industry and but turns out not to be compatible with forum use either. Another simple but big mistake. After it was brought to his attention and he realized that it was not compatible for use on forums, he revised to be inline with the forums.

And finally, there was the “Terms of Use” that was part of the registration. The parts stating that the submitted contents would become the sole property of the website or website owner has been removed. No other information is asked for on registration other than your email that could be useful to anyone. With that said, this information is stored in a database behind secure doors. It certainly wasn’t his intention of owning anybody else’s material.
Now we have that part behind, and hopefully it meets the criteria of all concerned.

Next item on the agenda

I have indeed been part of assembling the Gateway to Airguns forum format and providing Gene with a lot of the info that is on the forum. I would like to think I'm as honest and God fearing as anybody I know. I would never steal anybodies information, pic, graphics or anything, especially for any gain. That's just not in me. I have always provided anybody and everybody with any information that I have available from a lot of sources on the Internet and/or forums and the person that wrote that info if it wasn't me was always acknowledged unless it was unsigned or no author available. It has never been for any other reason than to help other people in the past and now. That's what my website was all about in the beginning and that is the sole and pure intent of Gene and the GTA.
It all started with Gene having visions of building a forum on the website concept and he brought his ideas to me for an opinion. I saw his dream and thought it was an excellent idea and could readily see that it would be of great benefit to all. Gene then asked me to help him construct the format for his forum and help him assemble information for it. That I did with a good part of the information coming from my website. He and I worked very hard for several weeks and spent many many hours putting it together.

Of you know that have been around the forums for any length of time, I've never been one to be afraid to share anything, especially knowledge with anyone. For that I'm certainly not sorry and would do it again. That's what my website is all about and that is the pure intent of Gene's forum and the GTA. A central point of information combined with a multi-forum would be a tremendous asset to the airgunning community as a whole and beneficial to all.

His intentions well as mine was to do no more that provide a central point of information and service to the airgun community as I have done for many years in the past.

As you probably know by now, I have been banned from the yellow forums. I have had no reason why or what I did wrong, never asked anything but was condemned without even knowing what I was "charged" and with no opportunity to be heard. Just beheaded at someone's will.

Never during any of this did I ever mention on the forums anything about the GTA forums or direct anybody to that forum at anytime which shouldn't be a bad thing anyhow. I have absolutely no understanding of why I was barred. I would think that some of the guys there would stand behind me or something but I guess you never know who your friends are no matter how much you may have done for them.

As many of you know, Gene hasn't been around forums long at all. And do you want to hear something funny. He was accused of trolling on the yellow pages and called me to ask me what it meant. He had no idea what trolling even was. Talk about innocence.

So....bottom line. Our intentions were sincere as well as honorable and were intended to benefit everyone. If I (or Gene for that matter) have offended any of you in any way or caused you to doubt my sincerity or honesty for any reason I am sincerely sorry and I apologize from deep within.

Now for me…and in my defense… let me get this off my chest

My initial objective yesterday evening when visiting the Crosman forum was to merely answer the questions brought up by the Crosman members earlier and explain what happened to the best of my ability. Next was to help take any corrections actions I could to the satisfaction of the leadership and membership of this and any other forum. I certainly didn't expect Steve to come over on your forum and bring his vindictiveness here and create more havoc on their forum. But I guess that's just the way he does things. It seems there are no limits to/for him and his ranting and raving but I refuse to get caught up in his name calling, trashing mud slinging tactics. I've said nothing to him about this and won't. As I see it, and many others that have e-mailed me see it, he has violated every one of his own rules and regulations for his forum as well as others concerning these kinds of issues and I have violated not one as far as I know. I don't believe I have ever trashed anybody.
Why someone would whip a group of people into such a vicious frenzy is beyond me other than perhaps paranoia, insecurity or fear as some have suggested to me. And then feel he has the right to then take it to the outside of his realm and into other arenas and upset others. I certainly haven't done a single thing that I should feel guilty about regardless of his accusations.

I've gotten so many e-mails the last 18 hour or so over 150 and just can't answer them all. I have read or at least reading them all though. Please don't feel offended or neglected if I do not respond to yours. However, many of you hit the nail squarely on the head. I have no idea what's happening on the yellow forums as I have been shut out completely although a few of the guys have copied and sent me the threads.

I certainly remember the skirmishes in the past. I also understand the friend’s issues and their fear of also being banned and I have no fault with them. It's like a tyrannical regime with a Stalin type figure head. It is a shame that people can't voice their opinion without it being deleted or subject to being banned. I have received a ton of e-mail since last night and that's what a good many of them are implying and that the posts that are positive for me are very quickly deleted. And I can certainly understand why people are afraid to stand up for me on my behalf on the forums, just as others have experienced in the past.

The other thing that really stands out to me in so many of the e-mails I have received is how many of them are using words like mental issues, paranoia, fear, egomaniac, obsession and panic to name a few. I firmly believe that too. I wanted to include some of them in this but Gene would not permit it and of course he’s right. But it appears that the guy really has some serious problems I believe and I feel sorry for him in a way. One thing for sure, I sure wouldn't want to be around him if he had a gun…lol…

I've never been on this side of the fence before and it is a bit frustrating but in all of my years of service to the AG community have I ever been accused of any wrong doing, being deceitful or misleading or any of the other things that he has so blatantly thrown out there. That turning of the cheek gets hard on the neck after awhile also but at the same time I refuse to sink to his level and belittle myself by stooping to such a low character level.

One other thing that bothers me is the claim that he was a part of my success in business. As many of you know, I was well established and successful in the airgun business with an excellent reputation long before he come to light. I didn't need him then and I surely don't need him now. And he did absolutely nothing to promote me or my growth other than have my name listed as well as the info link and when James was alive he was far more instrumental that Steve could ever be. Steve never did me any big favors. And the only thing I asked him for was permission to use a post about his gun on the HDD testimonial page. For him to make those inferences is just pure hogwash. And in my mind we were never what I would call friends but more like acquaintances or associates on the Fun Supply forum.

And I certainly don't see how he can say I stabbed him in the back. I certainly don't see where I blind sides Steve or have any obligation to inform him or seek his approval if I want to build a website or a forum or anything else for that matter. Since when do I or anybody else need to seek his approval or whatever for anything? Who does he think he is?

But it all boils down to this.

I find it hard to believe after all these years and as much as I have contributed to the airgun community, given so much time and effort to so many, helped so many of them that had problems and asked for nothing in return and then to be chastised, degraded, lied about, defamation of my character and integrity and trashed by an individual simply because of his own condition. I would think that the airgun community over all these years would certainly know that I would not stoop to the levels that he insinuates. You people know me far better than that and to those that have fallen under his umbrella of character assassination of me, I’m not mad at you my friends, just a little disappointed that you let it happen. But….it’s ok. All I ask is that you be fair to me and if you think of me as the person that he claims I am and you honestly believe that, I’m sorry I disappointed you. To the rest…thank you.

I agree with those that believe Steve is paranoid and/or has problems of some kind. His actions are sometimes beyond belief. He has a fear of losing control and that if there was another forum that some may of his members to it. The intent here was not to coerce any members to leave the yellow forum or any other forum for that matter. It’s just another forum as well as a place of information sharing that all are welcome to, a place of friendship, camaraderie, a place for sharing and seeking of information. But that’s not the way Steve sees it and is doing everything that he can to destroy it and keep his noose around his people with fear tactics, falsehoods, threats, banning or whatever it takes and at any cost with no reservation of destructiveness or harm it may cause.

For those that are willing to look at things with open eyes and are honest within themselves, it has to be pretty obvious there is a problem. And for those that don't see it, they must be either blind or of the same state of mind.

Gene also received a threatening e-mail this afternoon from Steve stating that he even attempted to copy his forum including having a Chinese forum, (We have China Gate) a Gamo forum, (We have Gamo Gate) and an off topic site (We have “The Backroom) and complained that we were even using a yellow background. Does Steve really believe in his own mind that he owns words such as Gamo and Chinese or owns color combinations or the category of forums even? The GTA is completely different in every way from the yellow pages including framing and setup, totally different construction and not any where near the same format. It is sad but Steve really does seem to have a serious problem I’m sorry to say.

One final thing…. I just found out that Steve has now pulled the plug for the Crosman forum and removed the link because… well…just because. I think you can figure it out. What does that tell you? Most people will only take so much crap. It’s a shame because Steve is his own worst enemy.

I believe I can state this with Gene’s approval. This kind of thing will never ever be allowed or will happen on the GTA Forum.

Please, visit often and be a part of the forum and not only share your knowledge and but contribute to other areas as well. It’s your forums, forums of the members for the members. We welcome you.

Thank you.

Bob aka: CharlieDaTuna
Bob  aka:  CharlieDaTuna
Co-founder of the GTA


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