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CalHunter 11-11-2019 04:34 PM

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. :D

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 Internet Brands bought,, & but Todd kept 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. :D

Champlain Islander 11-12-2019 09:03 AM

Those were the good old days for sure. The cat and mouse game between Justin and Stealthy was classic. Ironically canned hunting was a subject that would usually bring stealthy out of the shadows. To some of the members guessing if a new member was just Brad coming back under another alias was fun. I never thought Tardfarmer was stealthy. I always enjoyed the pages and pages TOPDAWGWOOFWOOF would generate. TDWW supposidly being a southerner could really rip the scab off some of the northern boys. I think MTHands knew who he really was. He was another fun regular who doesn't come around anymore. Classic feuds between different main characters were always festering up. Most of it was in good taste and humor and people seemed to have a thicker skin back then. I was one of the permabanned members back then and did get back after promising to be good and trying to get the site back to a fun place again. I even served a couple years as a mod which at least in my mind was like public service work for the trouble I caused and getting the boot. Sad to say no matter what gets done this place is about as active as a dead horse.

CalHunter 11-12-2019 01:52 PM

I can confirm from the horse's mouth (so to speak) that Tardfarmer was Stealthy. Another thing that would always bring Brad back was any discussion of abortion. Stealthy was going to come back about a year ago but only if he could reestablish his original Stealthycat moniker. He no longer had access to his original email account used to establish the name and Admin wouldn't budge on giving him access to it, even with me vouching for him. I really wish we could have made that happen as Stealthy was a large part of this place when it was hopping.

I also wish TopDawgWoofWoof would come back because it was just plain fun to read his topics and the topics that he hijacked (yes, hijacked) with his antics. Those were the days. I've seen a few similar characters like him on other websites and they always generate lots of activity for members who do just what you said-sit back and enjoy the show. Like you say, a lot of those "feuds" were just buddies giving each other a hard time. It was almost like they were sitting next to each other with respective laptops at times and laughing about the show they were posting for the rest of the members.

Champlain Islander 11-12-2019 02:43 PM

Some were probably debating themselves since during those times establishing an alias was something many did. I have always been CI and even when banned I just went elsewhere to get my internet hunting forum fix. I figured if they didn't want me then I wouldn't spend my time here. I got put back by Christine but had to make a few promises about my future posting. I am happy to say that I have kept my word. Having good, consistent and fair moderation is the key to keeping people in line and still allowing some fun. What happened in the past was a disaster and from my perspective shouldn't have gone that far. I am really surprised admin didn't step in since it was very apparent that abusive use of power was happening. Most of the regulars that were affected never came back even though they were invited back either by Pm or word of mouth. For those newer members who wonder what it was like ...all I can say is there were pages and pages of new posting just in the Off Season Forum. From my recollection that one forum was probably one of the most popular spots on HNI. I've tried a few times to rattle the cage a bit and try to entice a few of the older guys back but sad to say they don't seem to come back. Some of them have passed unfortunately. I guess that remembrance of HNI will have to rest in our aging minds and one day even that will be gone.

North Texan 11-20-2019 10:37 AM

Certainly a lot slower here than it used to be. I always thought TDWW was someone’s alter-ego?

Champlain Islander 11-20-2019 03:01 PM

Well we have Cal, NT and myself commenting. That's a good start from 3 of the old regulars. Come on guys and gals start posting again.

Originally Posted by North Texan (Post 4365030)
Certainly a lot slower here than it used to be. I always thought TDWW was someone’s alter-ego?

I am betting you are right.

thundermug 11-20-2019 04:26 PM

Some people liked TDWW, some didn't.
There were some people that were banned that left me wondering "Why?"
There were some people that were banned and I thought "It's about time" Unfortunately the melt down had not just started, it was in full swing. I'm not saying names, but there was one person in the middle of it.

How can we get this place to be the way it used to be? I have no idea. There is no one here that can wear blue undies, while mounting a toilet seat on the bumper of his truck.
where is hikchick? Recently married.
where is sunset? Traveling nurse, busy
Where is hntngrl?
Where is judiboi? married, children, attorney, very busy life. We watched as he grew up and became a man.
Where is 4pt? TeeJay? Buckinthewoodz? Who? Mastev? Sachiko?
I could name others, but it wont help. This place needs people that have real good personalities that makes others want to have a conversation. I don't have that type pf personality so I tend to not reply to posts.
I often thought of 99% of the people here as my invisible friends.

thundermug 11-20-2019 04:35 PM

BTW this place started before 1995. How do I know? I got married 3-18-95 and I was posting here before I got married.

North Texan 11-20-2019 04:57 PM

Probably need more non-moderators again. And someone stirring the pot a little.

Cal, the poof pen makes your fingers look fat.

It takes CI three hours to watch 60 Minutes.

Thundermug drives five under in the passing lane.


Champlain Islander 11-20-2019 05:13 PM

Davidmil was king of the non moderators. I remember he had a sign on his avatar saying something like non moderator. They made him remove it. I miss that guy.

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