"Dragon Dojo stays in the shadows" or "How the heck am I supposed to review schools?"
So, some of you may have seen another thread I started over at YMAS, a poll that asked which school in the Panama City, FL area I should go and do a Dojo Review on.
Dragon Dojo was, by leaps and bounds, the winner, so I began to open up lines of communication with it's owner and head instructor, Robert Wiest. I was unable to get in touch with him for about a week, but yesterday, I managed to get him on the phone.
Summarized conversation is as follows:
KAI: Hello, sir. I'd like to come to your school and do an objective review that will be published at a website forum that I frequent.
ROB: Huh, a forum? That's where everybody can talk about things, right?
KAI: Yah, yah it is.
ROB: Ooooh, well, ya see, I've been to one of these online forums that you're talking about, and I can't say I liked it very much. It was very negative, and people were saying things that weren't very nice. I mean, being a martial artist requires a person to have good morals and judgement, as well, so all that negativity was really just identifying them as not being actual martial artists, just guys who fight.
KAI: Right... well, I assure you, this forum has it's share of frivolous nonsense, but at it's core is a community of people that are passionate about martial arts. There are people of all martial backgrounds on this site. We've got Kung Fu, Karate, TKD, hell, we even have Ninjas. Most of the focus is on competitive use of these, though.
ROB: Yah, I see what you're saying, but it just kind of puts me off, ya know? I mean, you ever watch that one show with the guys who fight in the UFC and they live in that house and drink beer and fight each other? If it's like that, I wouldn't want to be a part of that, ya know? I'd actually rather you not write anything about me at all just yet.
KAI: So, at this point, you're not inclined to have me come to your school?
ROB: No, not at this time. How about this: send me the link to the forum, and I'll think about it.
KAI: I see. I'll send you that email immediatly.
ROB: Thanks. Hey, look, if you wanna come and take a free class or two, that's fine.
KAI: Really? That sounds great. Tomorrow, then?
ROB: Sure, sounds good.
KAI: I bet there are few people who would be interested to know that I'm indeed visiting your school. Mind if I post that info on the forum?
ROB: I'd rather you not, I don't want my name out there in the open until I'm sure about this, ok?
KAI: Wait... really? I'm just going to say that I'll be visiting your school. I won't post a review or anything if you don't want me to.
ROB: Still, I'd prefer that you didn't.
KAI: Uh... ok, then.
ROB: Are we cool? I'm not trying to be a jerk, here, it's just that the internet is an angry place, ya know?
KAI: Ya, yah, I get what you're saying.
ROB: Ok, cool.
KAI: So, see you tomorrow, then?
ROB: Looking forward to it!
KAI: Awesome, see you then. Bye.
So, today, I was ready to drive 45 min to his school, when I got this email:
To which I responded:
My partners and I have discussed your request. We've looked at your website and upon further discussion, we are not comfortable with what you do with your website. We do not wish to participate in it. We appreciate the opportunity, however, being that you are not interested in signing up for classes, we believe it would be a waste of your time to come to our school. We are not comfortable having a representative of this website at our school. Thanks again for the opportunity. Peace and happiness on your journey.
Have a great day! Robbie
“To each their own journey”
So, while we could ENDLESSLY get into the Dragon Dojo, I have a different question...
I am severely disappointed at this decision. I feel it is a personal insult that you would invite me to your school and then, through email, inform me that because I am not a source of income, I am not welcome at your school. Although I was intending to honor your request to not discuss these matters at Bullshido, the level of disrespect you have shown me has caused me to reconsider that decision, and thusly, I will indeed be discussing this on an open forum. You have already stated that the site is irrelevant to you, and that you do not care if I write positive or negative things about you or your school. This is good, because I will most assuredly be writing negative things about you and your school.
Again, I cannot overstate how disappointing your decision is. However, as you say, “To each their own journey.” Your refusal is tantamount to hiding in a corner, and if you’re ok with that, than I bid you peace and happiness on your journey.
How am I supposed to expose BS when the BSers run scared? Is it to the point where I have to go stealth? I mean, seriously, is dishonesty the ony way to get into their school?