Thursday, April 01, 2010

Change is coming to the Samurai Archives

First off, as the webmaster I'd like to thank the loyal readers, contributors, and forum members. The goal of the website was always to create an online community of people interested in Japanese history, and I think we've done a bang up job. Before going into detail on what's in store for the Samurai Archives, I'd like to extend my thanks to a few stalwart vassals of the Shogun's domain - namely Tatsunoshi and Obenjo Kusanosuke, who have been the grease that have helped keep the wheels moving along year after year.

Now for the news: A while ago I was approached by a representative of a scholar of Japanese history who was interested in forming an alliance of sorts. This scholar has striven for years to bring the study of Japanese history out of the ivory tower to the greater community, and so in retrospect, it was only a matter of time before messengers would be sent, hostages exchanged, and marriage alliances formed.

After weeks of dialogue and brainstorming, the bulk of the agreement has been set, and we have been given the green light to make an announcement. I will let the press release speak for itself, and then end with a few more comments:


Phone: +44 (0)1865 348 0400

Top Samurai Scholar to Integrate S-A; Announces New Deal with Osprey Publishing

April 1, 2010
LEEDS, England- Today it was announced that renowned Japanese historian and scholar on the samurai, Dr Stephen Turnbull, has just completed a deal to purchase the Samurai Archives website and all other affiliated entities for an undisclosed sum.

Dr Turnbull said, "I'm delighted to make this important step into expanding my multimedia-based educational efforts to teach people about real samurai history. I believe that the entire general public will benefit from this move."

Also on hand was Clive Gimpley-Goole, Managing Director for Osprey Publishing’s newly created Far Eastern Military Publications Division, who also has worked out a simultaneous deal with Dr Turnbull to publish printed editions of the Samurai Archives' respected online content. "This is really a tremendous opportunity for us to strengthen our working relationship with Dr Turnbull. We think that publishing the SA's web-based content in Dr Turnbull's name is a sure fire business model. In essence, it allows us to maximise the output of Dr Turnbull's books without the delay of having him to go out and do the usual lengthy field research."

When asked about the future of the Samurai Archives' Citadel--an online forum for armchair historians, D. Turnbull responded that it will be taken off-line effective April 3 for an overhaul and extensive editing to remove excessive negativity about certain scholars and other members that was allowed to prevail under the previous management.

C.E. West, who effectively ran the Samurai Archives out of his home in Honolulu, Hawaii, has been asked to stay on and serve in a yet to be determined capacity.

We have entered into an agreement, beginning a mutually beneficial relationship that will present the amateur historian new and exciting features on the Samurai Archives.

As part of the new agreement, Osprey will begin publishing the website content as a series of books starting in the fall. Each will be edited by Dr. Turnbull himself, and lavishly illustrated. Additionally, Osprey will be pioneering the latest concept in publishing: For-Print. This is indeed an exciting development for everyone involved with the S-A. For-Print, for anyone who isn't aware, is the concept of publishing forum content in book form. Each "Chapter" consists of one thread, taken directly from the Samurai Archives Forum. The threads will be chosen by a panel of scholars and experts including Ming-Sheng Lee, Thomas D. Conlan, and Steve Hubbell of the Samurai Eiga forum.

This is only the tip of the iceberg, and there will be many more exciting things happening in the next few weeks, so stay tuned!

In the meantime, please enjoy your April 1st.


  1. Oy gevalt. I almost had a heart attack or aneurysm or something when I read this. OMG, what am I going to do? I don't want all my work for the wiki to just go into being published by some other scholar [no matter who it may be] taking credit for my work!
    Well, maybe if I go and delete all my entries. Oh, but the S-A already claims copyright over everything I've written, and even if I delete it from the wiki, it's still there, still accessible and publishable, and OMG!!!

    ... and then I realized what day it was. I guess this is what I get for not keeping up on the Forums, not being in on the latest developments therefore.

  2. ...therefore, you were the perfect April fool! Hope we didn't rattle your cage too badly and hope you got a good laugh when you realized it was just a gag.