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Begrudged

The politics of Airsoft

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This is something that has been playing on my mind since I started learning all about the 'Politics' of Airsoft earlier this year, since then it has intrigued me how sites react to the affect of retailers. One example, my local shop sells pyros which are made in the UK and have passed all safety tests, lower than the decibel limit and has been widely accepted in sites all across the country. All of a sudden a site where the owner is friends with a different retailer decides that these are suddenly 'unsafe' and soon after the retailer begins selling pyros and supplying to this site. How is it fair that we buy products deemed safe for the sport and not allowed because some sites and retailers have disagreements that affect the consumer. No player I know is interested in the 'he said, she said' side of things behind the companies.

 

Furthermore, if you try to run a site where you want people to have an enjoyable day (some of which run under 18 days) I could (not going to) name at least a dozen sites i've played at where marshals are sarcastic, rude, arrogant, and just general a***holes. They're not strict enough on cheaters when they have been blatantly seen to be cheating and other marshals have seen it but just seem to shrug it off. There are far too many breaks inbetween games just so the marshals can have a chat, but anyway i'm getting off topic.

 

I learned something a while back that shocked me and made me disgusted. I found that certain retailers that hold a significant position in the UKARA organisation have been abusing their position to gain sales to non registered retailers in exchange for a UKARA membership. This may seem to some of you as a rant and I may have had a bad day, but what I hope you see here is the lack of care to consumers and only beating the competition to the ground, the abuse of UKARA, which we all have to pay for as well as retailers, these are the laws we have to go by and it sickens me that someone high up enough can be bribed with a couple of grand of stock and hand out UKARA to retailers left, right and centre. I know for a fact the retailer in question wasn't investigated and checked before getting registered.

 

If only 1 person out of 100 read this and agree with me that gives me great pleasure. Retail is all about the customer, not smashing the competition. You don't see O2 burning Vodafone to the ground, or saying "sorry you're on 3, you can't be in this shop"

 

Please post this where you can if you've read and understood what i've said, and as always feel free below to tell me your thoughts.

 

Signed

 

One PO'd investigator

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I've been of the same mind for ages and I couldn't agree with you more. It should be about the customer every time, not the profit margins.

 

Shameless plug! Come to check out my regular site, Skirmish Airsoft in Mansfield - Friendliest atmosphere possible, can't rate the staff highly enough. Made mates out of them, as well as all the site regulars, we're like a little social community with guns, it's great.

 

I also recently discovered how the main UKARA retailers are monopolising the market to benefit themselves as my site are trying to set up an online shop and they ran into issues with it, it's truly ridiculous, the big retailers are charging £300 per year just to allow you access to a database, access which ought to be free for the sake of the sport, prices ought to be competitive, it provokes innovative ideas and moves us forward, it's standard economics!

 

Also, with regard to the sites in question, where they're run with that degree of unprofessionalism, I say just spread the word of their habits, name and shame them and see how they start changing when their business takes the hit. Or at least threaten them with name and shaming, if they ban you because of it you just have even more reason to do it, businesses ought to fear their customers leaving, not the other way around.

 

The site I started playing at Phoenix Airsoft coughcough banned me from their forums and Facebook page just for visiting their old site when it reopened under new management, they didn't speak to me about it, didn't message me, and we had been pretty good friends up until that point. After that I just thought they didn't deserve my custom anymore and stopped going, haven't been since. They've started stealing the signs of their local competition and burning them, hosting night games illegally because their insurance doesn't cover it and slagging off anyone and everyone that's ever helped them to any degree just for minor offences like visiting other sites. The marshals have even openly walked around smoking weed. They then had the audacity to try and prosecute some of the ex-members for spreading bad press about them and causing them to lose money! It's their own bloody fault!

 

Sigh...

 

I know exactly what you mean and I couldn't agree more. I just hope everyone is fortunate enough to have a site that is run professionally by a stella bunch of people like I do. The best we can do is ignore the people that don't deserve attention and hope that their business just fails. With the game being what it is, it's quite difficult to push for legal action without drawing unnecessary attention to the fact that we use replica weapons. A scandal of some sort that the media grab hold of could go very much in the wrong direction.

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Eds got the best idea, find a site where you can feel at home with great people. My last site before closing was similar to how Ed describes skrimish airsoft. It wasn't the biggest or best site but the people there made it worth it and again, are now some of my best friends, I believe the same with Nick and Juni0r who ended up playing with our group too now.

 

Having to pay to join Ukara is ridiculous. Its not a great system as it is and though £300 isn't loads for some retailers, others will find that a fairly sizable sum.

As for phoenix ed, that's ridiculous, how can they have the audacity to go on at others?

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Skirmish Airsoft seems like a place people can play. Just like CQB tactical in Swindon no 'banter' by any marshals that can actually hurt someone like it has happened to me. My mate went to UCAP and all his life hes had it tough because hes ginger. About half way through the day of 'friendly banter' he threw f-bombs and c-bombs to the marshals and the owner and they wouldnt give their money back! For that reason theyve lost out on about 15 of us that regularly play

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Xsite are also a really great site without any of the bulls**t mentioned above. The owner of Xsite was the one who received the letter from the government to grant airsoft as a defense under a UKARA type deal and when someone mention how another site was heavily involved in helped to set up UKARA the response was "well we've got the only letter not them" so obviously there's some friction between some sites with some incorrect claiming.

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I'm More Dissapointed in the fact that JustBBGuns Has gained the favour of UKAPU and the UKARA Tard's without Training a Proper Tech Shitty customer service and Abnormally High Mis-Information, why do i mention the Tech Because Grammar Sold me an ICS L85A2 which was twiddled with by their Tech who soldered the Wiring Straight onto the Motor took the fuse out and wrapped electrical Tape around it (Done the Same to the Dean's connection's!)

 

In Short Yea I've known Both Organisation's are Pretty shitty and have been one of the factor's of Getting out of airsoft Numerous time's because this isn't a Problem in Paintball!!

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As said above. Guess who bribed their way to a UKARA not deserved by a hated retailer amongst airsofters

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Nick is right. I happened to be there next to him :P xsite deserve more credit than is given

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Granted The owner of Xsite doe's deserve a lot more credit but i still dislike the way he let's U18's Buy RIF's

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That's agreed Craig, I see kids everywhere getting 'Junior UKARA memberships' and thinking they can walk into retailers and buy RIF's. Another way sites and shops rip off the customer

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Ironic really. The sites rely on the players/customers to use "Honesty and Integrity" during a skirmish, yet some of these sites fail to use the same "Honesty and Integrity" to run those sites. That really grinds my gears! :angry:

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If only 1 person out of 100 read this and agree with me that gives me great pleasure. Retail is all about the customer, not smashing the competition. You don't see O2 burning Vodafone to the ground, or saying "sorry you're on 3, you can't be in this shop"

 

No, but Vodafone did put a lot of money in to buy the majority of the 3g spectrum, followed by 02, which left Orange and T-mobile with horrendous bandwidths that couldn't carry signals well. Oranges "we have the most telephone masts" was just a ploy to hide the fact they actually needed hundreds of more masts than anyone else because of the crap signals the Orange frequency would allow. Hence why Orange and T-mobile have teamed together to make EE and have done the same back to the other companies with the 4G network. Vodafone still having a large chunk of it though. 02 will struggle.

 

business is business. I mean Apple even tried suing Samsung because their tablet had "curved edges" and therefore was a iPad riff off.

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Nick is right. I happened to be there next to him :P xsite deserve more credit than is given

 

Wait what?!?! Who the hell are you then??

 

EDIT - Lewis??

 

Granted The owner of Xsite doe's deserve a lot more credit but i still dislike the way he let's U18's Buy RIF's

 

To be fair to them they're not breaking any rules. The u18 person must have their guardian present who must approve the purchase and pay for it. It also has nothing to do with UKARA, its purely site membership and they state quite clearly you cannot buy online and if you attempt to you are banned form the site.

 

It exploits a massive grey area in the VCRA which is if someone has a valid defense they can manufacture a RIF regardless if they're u18 or not so basically what Xsite are doing is selling a two-tone to the parent who then gifts it to the child who then gets it re-painted black which is perfectly legal, they just skip out the middle bit so it doesn't ruin the gun by needless two-toning, hence why the parent must be present.

 

I've heard of far more shady u18 membership schemes, like children playing for their parents UKARA which would be illegal as the parent has no defense to gain UKARA membership

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my mate is planning on suing them as they refuse to give him a full refund on his guns and are refusing to give him a replacement to even though the gun was broken when sold to him. This is the 3rd time it has happened to him.

 

I also raised the point he is selling all his products to minors and gave him an example of how i got my unsightly shotgun .

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Basically we need the law regarding RIF/IF to be rewritten and made clearer.

 

Although, to be fair, if we were to rewrite it, what would we include?

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Basically we need the law regarding RIF/IF to be rewritten and made clearer.

 

Although, to be fair, if we were to rewrite it, what would we include?

Jambwow to be shot every time he says solid or false advertises (Just saying)

 

And make it harder for U18's to get two-tone and i'm not sure if this is all ready part of vcra but to buy any IF or RIF a basic CRB to check for any violent crimes or anything connoting that sort of stuff.

 

TL;DR Jambwow gets shot , Less U18's with two tone plinkers and finally CRB before buying any RIF IF

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I agree with all but CRB, they can take up to 4 months to come through (not to mention CRB doesnt exsist any more, its now a DBS) so waiting for upto four moths for a crb to come back so you can buy your gun, plus having to pay out the £40 odd every year to keep it updated.

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I think they ought to just say, "Don't be a twat with it, 'cos if you are, we'll hang you"

 

Then everything will be hunky dory.

 

If someone's a twat with one, then they die. Pretty good deterrent!

 

Though I guess then, defence lawyers will be all like, "I have evidence to suggest my client was being a monstrously large penis, not a twat, so therefore he's done no wrong".

TL;DR?
The justice system in this country is more fucked than a fuck, being fucked, on fucking day, in the middle of f*ckland.

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Im one of these poeple who likes to try and think of a way to better things.

Alot of people will complain about stuff, and insist it should be changed but wont put in a second thought for how they should go about change that will still work.

 

Case and point of this, would be something that happened local to me, Animal rights were protesting against a shipping company that was sending cattle over seas, naturally some will die in the process. so Instead of sitting down with the company and discussing a viable way to improve the saftey of the cattle in a way that would keep very body happy, they were dominate on making only them selfs happy. Unwilling for compromise.

 

I mean at the moment that is what we have, a compromise. they wanted it banned out right, we wanted to keep playing.

(I think I might have to do a little research and see what I can come up with)

But I think we will always need that compromise in place but some wiggle room on out end might be worth haggling for.

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I think they ought to just say, "Don't be a twat with it, 'cos if you are, we'll hang you"

 

Then everything will be hunky dory.

 

If someone's a twat with one, then they die. Pretty good deterrent!

Ed I love your way of thinking . (No homo)

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Ta babes.

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From what I have read it seems that anyone over the age of 18 can buy a two-tone and gift it to someone aged under 18. Then, providing the under 18 is a regular skirmisher (at a recognised site?) they can the either repain it to make a RIF or buy replacement parts for the painted ones.

 

Similarly, an over 18 without a valid defence could but a RIF that has been two-toned and also buy the bits to convert it to a RIF - but that would then be illegal. Does not prevent them easily getting a RIF without a defence though.

 

With that in mind, the system that Xsite run which allows the parent of a regular skirmisher aged under 18 to buy a RIF seems far better for the sport as it does require the person who will use the RIF to be a skirmisher. It also reduces the cost to the customer as they do not pay for a painted RIF and then have to buy the bits to change it back to the original state.

 

The only downside for the customer is that they have to buy the guns from Xsite in a face-to-face transaction rather than being able to shop online but they do benefit from an excellent back-up service.

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Yeah I do like some of the thigns that Local sites offer, I think wolf armouries have a good one, where they keep hold of the RIF untill you have your defence. You simple use it at the games like it was your own. Although downside is the fact that their site is a very tight CBQ field which makes in unplesant to use long barrel rifles.

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