Facebook Puts the Screws to the Knife Community
Facebook's new policy for Pages, effective now, means it will be even more challenging for knifemakers, companies, enthusiasts and websites to reach their audiences on the site. From a Facebook blog post:
Because space in News Feed is limited, showing more posts from friends and family and updates that spark conversation means we’ll show less public content, including videos and other posts from publishers or businesses.
As we make these updates, Pages may see their reach, video watch time and referral traffic decrease. The impact will vary from Page to Page, driven by factors including the type of content they produce and how people interact with it. Pages making posts that people generally don’t react to or comment on could see the biggest decreases in distribution. Pages whose posts prompt conversations between friends will see less of an effect.
Basically, this means Facebook users will see fewer posts from the Pages they Like in their newsfeeds. Unless the Page pays for an ad, of course.
But that isn't an option for knife-centric pages. Facebook will refuse ads that feature “weapons,” and that includes legal knives from legitimate organizations. It doesn't matter if the Page sells knives or not, or if the ad's content is tame. If there's a knife in it, Facebook will refuse the ad.
So what are the alternatives?
The only option here is to look elsewhere to spend ad dollars and grow audiences (follow BLADE on Twitter here). Maintain those existing Facebook Pages, because the rules could change later, but focus on building followers on other platforms.
If I could be so bold, we here at BLADE magazine offer plenty of alternatives to getting the word out.
Todd Begg Talks Early BLADE Magazine Influences
Renowned knifemaker Todd Begg recently made the move from California to Texas, which kicked off a profile by The Dallas Morning News. He talks about how BLADE magazine sparked his knifemaking career in this video:
Begg briefly mentions the controversy with the use of his name to sell knives, something the knife community has been watching closely, but the majority of the article focuses on his craft.
Trench Knives Still Illegal in Texas
It's legal to carry most knives in Texas since restrictions relaxed last September, but that doesn't go for trench knives. From the Dallas Observer:
It's a lesson local construction worker Christopher Sparks learned when he was arrested over the weekend for possession of prohibited weapon. A Royse City police officer told him that he was under arrest for having brass knuckles, a Class A misdemeanor, and took him to the Rockwall County Jail.
Now Sparks is facing a fine of up to $4,000 and up to a year in jail. He'll also have a permanent criminal record attached to his name, making it harder to find work and places to live, unless he pays an attorney to have his record expunged.
“I was just trying to get home from work,” Sparks says.
This is a perfect example of how nuance in knife laws creates more problems than solutions. Were Sparks in possession of a dagger instead of a trench knife, he wouldn't be looking at a four grand tab and a year in the cooler.
P.S. Construction workers take the brunt of knife laws like this one. Just ask the blue collars, largely from minority backgrounds, in Manhattan. When even The New York Times editorial board thinks it's the wrong approach, you know you've got an ugly law on the books.
Attend a Knife Show in February and March
FEB. 2-4 LAKELAND, FL
The 40th Annual Gator Cutlery Club Knife Show
Lakeland Center. Call Dan Piergallini 813-754-3908 or 813-967-1471.
FEB. 10 WYOMING, MI
West Michigan Edge Show, the K of C Hall. Call Mike 616-322-5846.
FEB. 17 HONOLULU, HI
Hawaii Custom Knife & Tactical Show
Pomaikai Ballrooms at Dole Cannery. Contact JSM Cutlery LLC, Dept. BKG18, POB 1290, Aiea, HI 96701 872-356-2953 email@example.com.
FEB. 17 LITTLE ROCK, AR
The Arkansas Knife Show
Statehouse Convention Center. Call 870-279-7329 arknife.com.
FEB. 24 OZARK, MO
The 21st Annual Spring Cabin Fever Knife Show, 4-H Building, City Park. Call Don Long 417-485-6759.
FEB. 24-25 LEWISBURG, PA
Keystone Blade Association Annual Knife Show
Country Cupboard Inn. Contact Marlyn Kepner 570-584-4835 firstname.lastname@example.org or Skip Fryling 570-204-1544 email@example.com.
MARCH 2-3 TROY, OH
Spirit of the Blade Custom Knife Show
Miami County Fairgrounds. Call Joel Worley 937-638-9518 or visit firstname.lastname@example.org.
MARCH 2-4 DALTON, GA
The Knife Road Show
Northwest Georgia Trade Center. Contact Spirit of Steel Promotions 423-238-6753 email@example.com, jbrucevoyles.com.
MARCH 3-4 NEW BRAUNFELS, TX
Guadalupe Forge Winter Hammer-In & Knifemakers Rendezvous.
Contact Johnny Stout 830-606-4067 firstname.lastname@example.org and/or Harvey Dean 512-446-3111 email@example.com.
MARCH 3-4 PASADENA, CA
The 33rd Annual Knife Expo 2018 presented by the Southern California Blades Knife Collectors Club
Pasadena Convention Center. Call Helen 619-417-4329 knifeexpo.net.
MARCH 9-12 NURNBERG, GERMANY
The IWA Outdoor Classics 2018.
For trade visitors only. Contact NurnbergMesse North America Inc. +1.770.618.5842 firstname.lastname@example.org.
MARCH 16-17 FORT LAUDERDALE, FL
East Coast Custom Knife Show
Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort. Contact 417-866-6688 email@example.com or visit fiftyfiftyproductions.net or ecckshow.com.
MARCH 23-24 HAMPTONVILLE, NC
The 43rd Annual Tar Heel Cutlery Club Show
Yadkin VFW Building. Call Chris Groce 336-679-8817 firstname.lastname@example.org.
MARCH 23-25 JANESVILLE, WI
The 2018 Badger Knife Club Knife Show
Janesville Conference Center/Holiday Inn Express. Contact Bob Schrap 414-479-9765 Badgerknifeclub@ aol.com.
MARCH 30-APRIL 1 HARRISONBURG, VA
The 27th Annual Greater Shenandoah Valley Knife Show
Rockingham County Fairgrounds. Call Ralph 540-828-0778 svkc.org.
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