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Old 11-11-2019, 04:34 PM
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CalHunter
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Northern California
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Default Some History about this place

This came up in a topic on the religious forum of all places and Jake (Bocajnala) thought it should be pinned to the top. Like most histories, it gives "some" of the history but certainly not all of it. For the older members who go back a few years, feel free to post additional history so a lot of doesn't get lost over time. And yes, a lower member # does mean you've been here for a longer time.

This place was kind of sleepy when it started in the late 90's although it always has had a real active bow hunting forum. To understand the place, you almost need to divide it into 2 phases or periods of time. Before Internet Brands owned it and after Internet Brands owned it.

The original owner/creator of HuntingNet (HNI) was a guy named Todd Graf who started HuntingNet in the mid to late 1990's. His main IT guy (and friend) was named Justin and both were big-time bow hunters so you can see why the site was geared towards bow hunting back then and the bowhunting forum still has the most threads. When they sold HuntingNet to Internet Brands in 2008, they created and started another website called Bowhunting.com. Internet Brands bought HuntingNet.com, DeerHunting.com, WhitetailDeer.com & HuntingOutiftters.com but Todd kept Bowhunting.com. Internet Brands said they were going to leave HuntingNet as a stand alone website but add in more of their advertising, etc. That has more or less happened although Internet Brands has a more relaxed position on spammers (as long as they don't post spam), whereas Justin absolutely hated spammers when he was the main IT guy.

There weren't that many spammers back then and Justin's main nemesis was a member named Stealthycat. Justin got peeved at ole Stealthy and permabanned Stealthy's name and IP address. Stealthy worked at Sprint and had a virtually unlimited # of IP addresses to "join" HuntingNet with, using some very obvious and funny nicknames, such as Tardfarmer, Stealthy 2, derogatory member names about Justin, etc. It was a very funny inside joke that the regulars all knew about (or at least suspected) and then just sat back to watch the fun as Stealthy and Justin dueled back and forth on HuntingNet. That was just one of the many backstories, gags and rapidly evolving situations on HuntingNet that made it fun and has caused many of us still here to refer to it as "the Golden Years" of HuntingNet.

HuntingNet got real active in the political forum in the late 90's leading up to the election between Gore and Bush but was always very active and growing in the Off Season forum. It kept building up through the mid 2000's in a lot of other forums as well, including the religion forum. Back then, forums like this were a much bigger thing and the way a lot of people found and communicated with like minded people. As an example, Facebook didn't really take off until later in that decade. Bush 2 was President during most of that decade and there was more civility although heated arguments did occasionally occur. After Obama got elected, the place kind of stumbled along the same way but people started bleeding off to Facebook, other forums and due to over-moderating.

We had one member promoted to moderator and he argued with lots of members and would delete their entire posts when they disagreed with him and then permaban them. That was kind of a tipping point for this place. There was pretty much a palace revolt and the Site Admin removed the Off Season forum where most of the over-moderating had occurred. Some of the members who were permabanned came back under aliases but a lot of them simply never came back. Some of the older mods and I lobbied the Site Admin heavily to get the Off Season brought back. It took several months but it was finally brought back and that moderator who caused the problem lost his moderator status and powers. There was probably 6 straight months of complaining as we slowly got members un-banned and reinstated but that forum never really came back to its' former activity level. Before the forum was yanked, on any given day, there were pages of new posts and topics as people checked in, bantered back and forth and there was always some running joke in progress by one or more of the "interesting" characters who regularly posted. After the fiasco and the forum was reinstated, there have been maybe a handful of posts on any given day and the place is often quiet as a church.

So now you know some of the colorful history of this place. As always, it still has potential. Which is probably why those of us remaining still hang on and keep logging in.

Last edited by CalHunter; 11-23-2019 at 02:14 PM.
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