I had a talk with Stefon Harris a while ago. I don't think I've talked about it here yet.
The argument is this: The piano is part of the percussion family but percussionists don't learn piano. The piano is in a performing way, NOT part of the percussion family at all. It requires a lot of dedicated and unrelated skill and has moved out of the percussion family. Not how it's made of course, or the mechanisms that make the sound but in a performance way.
The vibes are sort of the same. It seems to me that pro vibe players are not percussionists, we are more keyboard players. In fact many of us probably decent piano and very little 'percussion'.
Stefon thinks that like the piano, if it's brand is taken out of the percussion family more of the other players (i.e. string players, wind players) will check out and play the vibes. I'm not sure if I totally agree with that, however Stefon is really smart so it's part of this idea to think about.
To be honest I have trouble thinking of the vibes with their history as part of the percussion family (except for how they produce sound). I think in a way the drum set is the same. Not all percussionists play drum set (and play it well). It's usually Drums or percussion. However with the marimba, a lot of marimba players play percussion also. Or more than with the drums or the vibes.
What do you think?