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Especially now that Firearms.SE is shutting down, I think this topic is worth looking at in a little more detail. In some respects this is revisiting What questions about firearms are on topic?, but I'm trying to drill down a little more now looking at the scope of what was being asked on Firearms.SE. Essentially, "what from them do we want."

There's a bit of a challenge here because the general rule seems to be that while firearm training should by all accounts be considered a martial art, it usually seems to involve a culturally distinct community from people who train in other martial arts. We do not want to become a "shooting SE," but there are also topics regarding guns that are immediately relevant in the martial arts world.

Personally, I feel that the following firearms-related questions are more likely or definitely on topic for us, or can be adapted without too much loss of specificity:

  • Tueller Drills, both knife and gun side. Really, on that note, CQC in general that may involve guns since this may emphasize the "martial" side of the equation. Some of these are going to be clearer than others.
  • Martial arts that employ guns in the their training and how they incorporate them.
  • As mentioned elsewhere: disarms, etc which are commonly trained are certainly on-topic.

The following I am less certain about, or some may be on topic and some may not.

There are also some questions that I feel are almost entirely off topic:

The long and short of it is that I feel that there's very little we are going to successfully draw from Firearms.SE directly or that we should migrate from there, but that we might consider keeping a broader topic scope around firearms than we might otherwise if Firearms.SE continued to exist.

  • Excellent post, @DavidHClements. +1. – stslavik Apr 25 '12 at 20:25
  • Agreed, let's pick off their users as they flee, and direct them to this Q as a guide. – Dave Liepmann Apr 25 '12 at 20:29
  • If there are any questions to be flagged for migration from Firearms that would be appropriate for Martial Arts, it would be best to do it soon (i.e. the next few hours as of when this comment was written). Note that salvaging is not an imperative for "saving" Firearms.SE if their content does not fit here. – Matt Chan May 4 '12 at 19:16
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I am a bit more traditional than some, so my answer leans in that direction. Personally I think questions:

  • about disarming or facing someone who is using a gun
  • using the gun in grappling as a weapon substitute (i.e. replacing a kubotan)

are within the scope of Martial Arts, while anything like:

  • how to point a gun and shoot it
  • maintaining or using the gun or its associated accessories

are off topic. While martial arts do evolve and some have incorporated the use of guns, I think using it directly as a weapon isn't martial in itself. In fact using a gun in its traditional way is almost anti martial arts.

Having said that, I don't know if there would have been too many questions on F.SE that would have dealt with disarming or using a gun as a grappling accessory.

  • Interesting. Do you see martial arts (per se, or .SE) as primarily unarmed? What about koryu weapon arts, or filipino stick/machete techniques? – Dave Liepmann Apr 26 '12 at 14:20
  • What about "How to use a bokken?" Is it on or off topic? ... – Sardathrion May 1 '12 at 13:33
  • @Sardathrion I would think that is definitely on topic. Not only have they been around for several centuries (and therefore are "traditional"), they are a training replacement for live blades. To me the only thing to discuss would be whether particular questions would require a bokken tag rather than katana or wakazashi. – slugster May 1 '12 at 19:56
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The long and short of it is that I feel that there's very little we are going to successfully draw from Firearms.SE directly or that we should migrate from there, but that we might consider keeping a broader topic scope around firearms than we might otherwise if Firearms.SE continued to exist.

I agree with this sentiment for several concrete reasons. First, consider the site statistics:

Site Stats
346 questions 
710 answers 
98% answered 
513 users 
377 visitors/day

This is considered to be a non-audience for their topic.

Also, when I look at their front page, I see the following list of questions at the top:

Should a new handgun shooter start with .22LR or 9mm?

The firearms beta is being closed, what now?

Why does steel-cased ammunition not feed as well in semi-automatic firearms as brass does?

Custom materials used when casting bullets

Proper technique with a laser sight

Why is some ammunition coated?

Will rounds be set off if they are handled roughly?

You might be able to make a case that the questions under the "training" tag. I see seven of those right now.

If someone truly wanted to harvest people and material from the dying firearms site, I would suggest going through each of the vaguely applicable questions and flagging them for admin attention and suggesting migration to martial arts.

  • I agree. We've never explicitly said, "Guns are bad, m'kay?" and denied people from asking questions here related to self-defense with guns (so far as I'm aware). In fact, we've had a few. I think that, for most people, it's simply a non-topic, and picking up people leaving the bar at 2am isn't going to make a significant change to our site statistics. – stslavik Apr 26 '12 at 17:31

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