Over my eight or so years having been back in the hobby I’ve become intimately familiar with Phil Flory. I think anyone in the hobby with an internet connection probably has. Let’s be honest, he’s carved out a nice niche for himself and built a reasonable following of people willing to not only engage with his content, but pay for it.
However, over the years my impression of him has changed dramatically from the initial “oh that’s cool” to constant open palm insert face. Up until just a couple of days ago the only real issue I have had is some of the nonsense I’ve heard him spew; either misinformation about paint chemistry, or pushing dogma that causes modelers not to think for themselves. Occasionally, we will have a laugh and try to do what we can to correct him, or shine light on the realities of the misinformation we are sharing.
You see, I feel, when you have an audience as large as Flory does, you have a duty to do your absolute best to share the best, most correct information you can about any subject you choose to speak about, but Phil routinely does not. You can often tell he’s full of shit because people who are tend to ramble, and boy does he ramble. And all the rest of it.
It really wasn’t a surprise to me when a few days ago, in one of his live shows, Phil made some pretty bogus claims about the availability of Mr. Paint (MRP) in the United States. In this fully fabricated narrative Phil claimed there were no U.S. distributors for MRP anymore, and that it couldn’t be had in the US.
This is an absolute lie, and this was pointed out to him by multiple members of The Scale Modeler’s Critique Group in the comment section of his video. The reality is our good friend and member owns and operates MRP’s largest volume US retailer at: http://www.hobbyworld-usa.com.
What Flory didn’t count on was the fact that both Hobby World’s proprietor and the two top guys at MRP are members of our group; one of them being, you know, the owner of the company. So, he probably didn’t really expect to get called out on his bullshit, but he did. And then he took things up another notch and went completely bananas.
Linked just below is an unpublished daily video (meant only for his paying members) that I was able to obtain from some back door sources. In this video around the 25 minute mark you can see where one of our members at SMCG points out Hobby World. Then things get serious.
Start at the 25 minute mark and watch the shit show begin.
When Flory does get called out for something flat out wrong he’s said, he will often get defensive. That’s what he did here. Here’s a breakdown of what happens next:
- He calls Will Pattison (who also pointed out Hobby World) the “worst You Tube reviewer ever.” Personal attacks. Perhaps he should join SMCG and offer some constructive criticism?
- He backtracks from saying MRP had no U.S. distributor and says their US distributor doesn’t order it from them all that much.
- He straight up defames Matthew Bole, the owner of Hobby World, by claiming he will only order it when he’s received enough interest to justify it.
Hobby World orders between 2,000, and 3,000 bottles of MRP a month. The reason is because our group – with 10k members – has generated remarkable demand for it. Also, there has been plenty of demand outside the group and with one of their other distributors pulling out sometime over the last year, that just means the demand from Hobby World has elevated. Matthew simply can’t keep up. This isn’t helped by the fact that the owner of MRP recently ducked out on a three week vacation which has caused delays in restocking. Yes, MRP is largely backordered at Hobby Wold, but it’s because there is high demand; Matt often posts images to the group of his MRP shipments, and they are usually sold out momentarily.
Not only has Phil engaged in defamation of a business and it’s owner, which has serious legal consequences, for some reason he’s decided that the best move for himself as a thought leader in the hobby is to completely undermine Mr. Paint and their ability to operate in the marketplace.
Someone with an audience as large as Phil’s has a very real ability to direct commerce. We have seen in in our own group. This has been the case with MRP. What Phil has done is tell a large section of his audience that they essentially can’t get the paint here. This could invariably damage MRP’s and Hobby World’s bottom line by directing consumers to seek alternatives to a paint they may actually prefer. After all, why is MRP such a hot topic on his own channel? People fucking want it.
MRP probably isn’t going to concern themselves with Flory too much, but I feel they’d certainly have grounds for a legitimate complaint given his mischaracterization. Same can be said for Hobby World. But I just can’t let Phil get away with such a gross misrepresentation of the facts. I honestly can’t say I am surprised, however, given some of the things I’ve been told in confidence about his dealings. This is the first time that I’ve seen something this ethically bankrupt come out of Phil’s mouth myself, and it’s disappointing. Unfortunately, he just doesn’t have the capacity to admit when he is wrong, or has misspoken. This happens a good bit too because, let’s face it, when you are trying to fill hours of YouTube content a week you either need to know what you’re talking about, or talk out of your ass. Phil does the latter and then doubles down and resorts to personal attacks when called out. What a knob.