I'm just curious to get people's views on this.
The bible students seem to start of as quite a liberal group under Charles Taze Russell, albeit he had some whacky teachings going on. Obviously things began to change under Rutherford.
But what decade did it become abundantly clear that the society was indeed high control religion or even labeled a cult?
I know that when I first heard of the JWs in the early 80's, I was told they were a cult by some friends, which seemed a common view.