So, today's my last day at SHOT Show 2013. I'm meeting with the good folks at Leupold later this morning, before the SHOT Show Blogger Luncheon, but other than that I have this last day to explore. I still have a few folks I'd like to visit, and that may very well take the rest of the day. For now, though, I have a few observations between this year and last.
First off, there seem to be fewer new releases this year. SIG SAUER has a bunch of new stuff coming out (I'll do a full post next week); but in talking to the folks at Smith & Wesson, it doesn't appear that they've got anything new. Now, scuttlebutt on the floor (unconfirmed) is that many new releases were held pending the President's speech yesterday, so today might be a good time to go check - or maybe the NRA convention in May.
Another observation, shared with several other folks who were here last year as well, is that the schwag seems to have dried up. Last year there were all kinds of hats, T-shirts, pens, knives, flashlights, etc. with company logos and slogans; this year, there's a general sense that companies are scaling back. Whether it's the poor economy or simply an ROI adjustment is unclear.
The media, come to find out, had been contacting SHOT Show exhibitors before the show, looking for comment. Speaking to someone in the business who has requested to remain anonymous, they mentioned referring media requests for comments to a third party - no direct denials or refusals, just a redirection to a media group with a canned response. A common tactic was to put media requests off until after SHOT - at which point the media was decidedly not interested...
And lastly, as always, gunnies are just good people. With a convention hall filled with tens of thousands of people from literally all over the world, it's still pleasant, polite, and professional. This year, unlike last, I have not encountered anyone that was put-off by the "INTERNET" badge rather than "MEDIA" or "BROADCAST". It's been a hard-won acceptance, and it may very well be that the disdain is simply unspoken, but it certainly seems to be getting better.
It's been an interesting week, and I am looking forward to being home - but certainly not Massachusetts.
That is all.
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