Really?

I haven’t said much about the detecting shows on TV in the past. I think there are a couple of shows out there that have good intentions. Those intentions seem to get twisted and manipulated into a “dramatized for television” show. Does this give people a false hope of our hobby? Probably.. Does it make people think it is easy to get on great dirt? Probably.. Does it make people think every relic will get you serious cash? I hope not. I would love to see a survey given to us MDers asking what we want in a show. I think you could pick out 10 of the best mders from different types of hunting and have a really excellent show. Have them talk about their research, how they got permission, how much time they spent at the site, how they hunted it, which machine they used, and what they found. I wanted to get a rough idea of how many people are in the hobby and admit it. One popular forum has 33,000 members. I have to think many mders would tune into the show for knowledge, stories, and to envy the finds. I would also bet that many others who like history would watch. Do you think Arkies, as Mr. Stout calls them would respect us more without all the drama? I think the hobby deserves to be represented fairly and accurately. Over the last two weeks I have been involved in two conversations with people who asked how to find gold. I didn’t tell them that I dig pounds of gold. I told them that searching for gold is brutal and it takes extreme patience. In closing I ask do we really need the drama? Would we be better off without it? Let your opinions fly!

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3 thoughts on “Really?

  1. Well, for one thing, that forum doesn’t have 33,000 ACTIVE members. Probably more like 200-300 active members that login daily. The rest are either old members that no longer visit or “dummy” accounts that have been created for advertising purposes. Some of the “guests” that you see are search engine spiders like google and bing etc.

    When I first joined that forum a few years ago there was tons of posts daily, where you’d have to click back 8 pages of posts just to catch up on the daily posts. Now, maybe 3-4 pages of current posts and conversations.

    That in itself tells you that most detectorists eventually figure it out that detecting is not an easy pay day. We all realize that diggin is hard work, and requires effort. Alot of the people who watch those shows and then sign up to a forum are out of the hobby within a year or two. Like you said, detecting requires just as much research as it does detecting time, probably even more.

    A “REAL” detecting show would only interest a small portion of die hard detectorists. The average joe wouldn’t at all be interested in watching the rest of us dig pull tabs and foil in search of one gold ring every 10th hunt, if we’re lucky. You have to also realize that not all that you see on those forums is realistic either. You have guys who fake finds in an effort to make themselves feel important. You have detector salesmen on the touting this detector or that detector in an effort to make money, but that doesn’t mean what they say is the truth.

    I’ve seen it time and again when a new detector comes out, all the sudden it’s the best thing since sliced bread, beating every other detector in it’s class, hands down! You have guys who are PAID to use certain machines and then shoot videos about their UBER finds with said detectors. They call it “Sponsored By” I call it a paid actor, plain and simple!!! One hunter that’s gone hunting got so sick with it, I had to unsubscribe from his BS videos.

    Whats my point? The point is that there is alot of sensationalism that goes on in this hobby and others on the internet. Reality isn’t exciting, no one wants to admit that their $2500 machine isn’t that great after all, and that it doesn’t really go any deeper than an entry level machine.

    No one wants to admit that the reality of detecting is that it requires hard work and dedication through research and time to find good finds. No one wants to admit that if they don’t sensationalize their videos that advertisers won’t find their videos beneficial and therefore they won’t make any money off of their videos through advertisement banners at the bottom of their video. How do you know when a guy is gettin paid from ads? Simple, he’ll have hundreds or even thousands of videos posted, THAT equals money, and our society will do whatever it is to make a quick buck, even if that means telling a lil white lie here and there.

    So, can you really blame new guys coming into the hobby for having false expectations due to the shows, videos and forums they visit? Most people aren’t willing to tell the truth and lay it out there like I just did, but then again, I personally don’t care what folks think about me.

    I keep it real, but keeping it real isn’t profitable, so these shows, advertisers, detector salesmen, and video superstars will continue doing what they do, all in the name of a dollar.

    If these TV shows weren’t making money through an interest, they wouldn’t be on television. But, apparently people are tuning in, and detectors and accessories are flying off the shelf, and at the end of the day, that is what matters to them, not showing reality of metal detecting. There’s no money in that.

  2. Ozarks, you bring up some valid points. I wish I knew how many people were involved in the hobby. I am certain that there would be just as many viewers if we had good representation about the research, techniques, and finds as they get now with all the dramatization.

    I have no problem with sponsorships but if a show had my proposed format you would have 10-15 guys who swing different machines. I would love to learn more about water detecting, offshore adventures, and gold panning/dredging. If you had a full panel of guys I’m sure there stories would be entertaining without much inflation.

    It would be cool if the panel of “pros” would actually do side by side comparisons, technique tips, and research tips. I could totally see a show about detecting that is legit and accurate.

    I guess what I’m visioning is the American Digger Relic Roundup on TV with a few more people (maybe even a level headed arkie or two) and more in depth articles. Major Manufacturers could advertise as well as dealers.

    Call me crazy but I think it could work.

    1. If there’s money to be made, it will be made-and drama increases ratings.

      At least wrestlers with bulldozers, knocking on doors has been replaced with real detectorists, on historical sites getting über excited over old coins, buttons, and relics.

      But no matter what the ratings, I don’t think the “Arkies” will ever have any respect for us. They’ll call us when they need our skill set, and it seems we are always willing to help out, but they are not willing to recognize our hobby as legitimate.

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