What a week!

By on November 15, 2007

WOW!! Well, I can safely say that the toys for big boys (T4BB) display certainly raised the profile of airsoft alright. The show ran in the RDS from the 9th to the 11th of November and featured four stalls selling airsoft equipment and what was, by all accounts a very decent demonstration exercise by a demo team comprised of the Ghosts and the Contractors.

Of the retailers at the show two were operating under our guidelines (BFSL and Eirsoft) and enforcing a strict policy of not selling to anyone without ID and insisting that any replica purchases remain in their boxes until the purchasers leave the show. The other two retailers were apparently causing some hassle in that although it would appear that they were selling inferior quality devices, they were selling them indiscriminately. This resulted in several instances of IAA representative players and retailers approaching both individuals and security staff after witnessing people roaming around with replica devices on show.

As suspected, after the show each evening there were several instances of airsoft devices being displayed openly in public outside the show – any such instances witnessed by IAA members were immediately reported to the gardaí.

Despite the best efforts of all IAA affiliates and members present at the show there was still enough concern among the general public to warrant the attention of “Joe Duffy” and his liveline show on RTE Radio 1 on Monday the 12th. I was called upon to take part in this “discussion” with 30minutes notice and was joined on the air by the T4BB event organiser, one of our own retailers and a representative of the Irish Military Vehicles Association. The IAA would like to extend it’s sincerest gratitude to all who came on the line to defend the sport of airsoft and did so with a fantastic level of informed statement and balanced response. By the end of the show, not only had we manged to defend the sport to a better than anticipated degree, but Joe Duffy himself gave out the URL for the Eirsoft.ie web retail store. Furthermore, the aftermath of the show has proven it to be some of the best publicity to date received by the IAA and the sport of airsoft. An online recording of the show can be found here: http://www.rte.ie/podcasts/2007/pc/pod-v-121107-1h7m54s-liveline.mp3

The latest in the aftermath of the show has been that the evening herald ran the article “Ban these so-called “Toy” guns before tragedy happens”. The article contains the entirely uninformed rantings of a supposed former member of the Gardaí, a Mr. O’Carroll, in which he makes many blatant errors about both the law as it stands and the capabilities of airsoft devices. In light of this horrendous ball of crap which the herald have seen to publicise as “Journalism” they have been sent a reply from the IAA pointing out each of the errors in the report and respectfully requesting a right of reply to the previously printed “article”. They have also been sent a copy of the IAA press release document which is available to all in the downloads section of this site.

We are anticipating plenty more of this sort of publicity in the coming months, particularly with christmas just around the corner but we are weathering well.

On a finishing note the IAA commitee would just like to issue a hearty “WELL DONE” to all involved in this years T4BB event; The Ghosts, The Contractors, Eirsoft, BFSL and the Event Organisers have all done an excellent job in pulling off an event which involved elements which nobody was familiar with. We will be looking forward to next years show with great anticipation and expect that it will be even better again.

ps: I’ve uploaded one or two pictures from the show to the gallery page. 😉

About Sean

You must be logged in to post a comment Login