The Roland Special and when to follow when to question…


There is a person who I know via the Internet who is known for extremely accurate gun/gear/videogame/training/combat/warload information. He and I have some of the same contacts within our networks. He mentioned something about his daily carry weapon in a conversation. Due to that conversation I copied the weapon and its configuration.

A popular instructor is known for detailed AAR’s on forums to the point that people base their equipment load outs, weapon setups, and choices of weapons – without attending his classes. I read nothing but good reviews and the subject matter was pertinent to the skill sets I was interested. I followed his advice on guns and gear and even hosted him for several courses to teach.

A forum member posted a video highlight reel of a training course and facility. I have some friends who know the main guy at the facility. I heard tremendously positive reviews about the training from multiple reputable sources. I traveled. I attended the training. I have returned for multiple attendances and I am working on being an instructor there.

All of these examples are positive influences from social media or forums. Unfortunately this is not always the case when following info found in a forum or in social media. These are powerful mediums. They can cause you to spend a lot of money, but in a good way if you are using them right.

How do you figure out who to listen to?

-Background – does this person have a background in the subject matter they are discussing?

-Networking – do people you respect within your network respect them?

-Logic – does the information provided make sense?

-Conflict – has the source’s information conflicted with itself?

-Signal to noise ratio – is there sufficient information on the topic you are studying or is there more off topic shenanigans?

All of these factors alone are not enough. Fact checking and verifying is always a good idea, no matter the source.

Now, getting that carry weapon was done pretty much blind. Roland already is a known vetted entity and I was willing to take the chance. Since that conversation and getting mine – the concept seems to have become quite popular. We have even nicknamed the configuration the “Roland Special.”



Matt Landfair
Lead Editor/Contributor at Primary & Secondary
Active Law Enforcement background since before the turn of the century in the middle of no where. Firearms instructor, armorer, has attended numerous training courses including DARC, Follow Through Consulting, EAG, TMacs, and more boring mandatory popo training you can shake a stick at. Has died a million deaths by powerpoint. He has written for RECOIL Magazine, Breach Bang Clear, Soldier Systems Daily and Monderno. Enjoys long walks on the beach, blah blah blah… Known as Matt Prime or Riafdnal in some circles.
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