Please be advised that if you are posting and you are affiliated with a medium or large business that does production, or that you're a retailer, wholesaler, distributor or manufacturer, then we ask that you edit your profile's signature links and remove direct links to your business' website.

If you've been around long enough, you realize that SFI has much invested in promoting the individual artist who has dedicated his/her life to keeping an old tradition alive. This means a life of near poverty. We care for the craft of traditional bladesmithing process and want to keep these individuals surviving. To us, nothing is more important.

Too often a business that gets into mass production comes along and claims they use the same traditions and begin to muscle out the individual artists. The bigger businesses have more money to promote themselves.

Well, at SFI we level the playing field and we give those starving artists a chance. Our mission statement is to conserve and preserve this art given the sacrifices of the men and women who have chosen this path of life. Given this, if you are a business, please consider supporting SFI through advertising.

There are some who have posted and the post strikes me more as a publicity stunt. Any post that is deemed a subtle "under-the-radar" publicity or promotion will be treated as using SFI for free promotion at the expense of others. That will get you banned and looked down upon.

I don't mean to come across heavy handed, so I really want to appeal to you businesses to do some self-policing. After all, you clicked "I AGREE" to our policies, and now that rule violations are brought to my attention, I'd like to give you the opportunity to self-correct before I have to do searches for signature link violations and start implementing bans and e-mailing out warnings (or no warnings if you're a repeat offender, in which case do NOT click "I AGREE" to our rules and registration process if you never had the intention of honoring it.)

I am by no means targeting any one specific individual. But you all need to be aware that I expect the rules to be followed. If the rules aren't clear, ask a Moderator to explain it to you. If need be, we will be more verbose on the forums' Rules page. If in doubt, ask a Moderator. Our policies may not be phrased perfectly, and there may in fact be many gray areas we're still trying to figure out. But blatant violations are a different manner altogether. It shows there was never intent to help reinforce the community we've worked so hard to build here.

Please do your part to contribute to the community. Thank you.