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Looks to me like some people think it’s a good idea and some don’t. End of the day until everyone agree that it’s a good thing we won’t have real representation as players. If we can’t even agree ourselves how the hell are the site owners, retailers and authorities.

 

i know airsoft is expensive but it’s hardly going to cost hundreds a year to join the governing body (maybe save the takeaway money for a couple of weeks ). Plus there could be sponsorship etc. 
 

frankly I’m a little baffled as why people would be so against it. Makes sense to me and legitimatises airsoft as a sport. Surely a good thing? 

Edited by GenuineGerman
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Exactly this!!!   The safety brief for a real steel site takes about 5 mins; why?  The safety brief is NRA standard.  The same could happen in airsoft.   If we really got our act t

@AlphaBear You can join UKAPU for nowt ie zero, nothing, nada, zilch but there is a £5/year sub and a £10/year sub (yes, you do get a patch for £5 and get two for £10!)  If a £10 a year secures A

Think we’ve reached the “put up or shut up” point , general consensus seems to be we do need something now so me personally I’m going to start pushing UKAPU as my chosen option from now on so I’ve up’

11 hours ago, GenuineGerman said:

 

frankly I’m a little baffled as why people would be so against it. Makes sense to me and legitimatises airsoft as a sport. Surely a good thing? 

 

Many people know my opinion in the need for a bonified license, which would only come with a governing body and recognition as a valid hobby/sport.

 

However some people don't want this recognition because people don't like change and oversight. It works for them right now, so why change? The answer is, Airsoft has been in or around part of this grey area of legality and acceptability for a very long time, which cant last forever. Are we allowed to continue, be visible and be legitimate, or not be legal and become underground? The risk of trying to find out once and for all is that we might get the wrong answer. But I think it's something we really have to deal with as Airsofters and get a definitive answer. If we come out of the gate wanting to become legitimate, it would give us an advantage in negotiations, rather then skulking around in the shadows waiting for an "incident" to bring the problem to us completely unprepared to deal with it.

 

I support some form of recognition and legitimate representation, as it would help legitimise Airsoft in the eyes of lawmakers and set us apart from the idiots with RIF's in public that you find in the newspapers.

 

Airsoft itself may come across a bigger (Unspecified) threat in the very near future which if we had representation in place, could help fight off whatever it is more effectively; rather then scramble around at the last minute fighting amongst ourselves to organise. If we have no representation in place to already deal with an (unspecified) threat, we would in a far worse position to defend Airsoft. 

 

Airsoft is already or will become political for those outside of the hobby, we need to acquire the tools to negotiate, defend and come out the other side as a legitimate sport or hobby. It might mean it would be harder to get into the sport as a new player, it might mean paying a regular yearly fee and as a result might mean less money flowing to retailers, but at least it will save the hobby as a whole which is far more important. 

 

Bottom line. I don't mind paying more money to help safeguard what we do. 

Edited by Asomodai
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But what will that fee afford us? What will it give us in return? It's one thing saying we need a governing body but who will do it? Will they be elected people or will it be Joe Blogs running it from their bedroom? I mean who the hell actually is Joe Bloggs? A governing body has to be a legitimate, recognised entity, which sits on a panel and is able to make national representation and if you're paying a fee to it it has to have a proper set of financials and accountability. As players we want to know our money is only being used for one purpose snd that's to promote the wellbeing of our sport and to fight our corner and not paying for expensive golfing weekends away! 

Edited by AlphaBear
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2 minutes ago, AlphaBear said:

But what will that fee afford us? What will it give us in return? It's one thing saying we need a governing body but who will do it? Will they be elected people or will it be Joe Blogs running it from their bedroom? I mean who the hell actually is Joe Bloggs? A governing body has to be a legitimate, recognised entity, and if you're paying a fee to it it has to have a proper set of financials and accountability. As players we want to know our money is only being used for one purpose snd that's to promote the wellbeing of our sport and to fight our corner and not paying for expensive golfing weekends away! 

 

 

Well you kind of answered your own question! 

 

Who would run it? I dont know. Someone smarter then I.

 

I think UKAPU have the right people in charge personally and would do a reasonable job. As we pay in our subs, they would be accountable to it's members as a union.

 

It's better then the "nothing" we have representing us now. 

Edited by Asomodai
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1 minute ago, AlphaBear said:

But what will that fee afford us? What will it give us in return? It's one thing saying we need a governing body but who will do it? Will they be elected people or will it be Joe Blogs running it from their bedroom? I mean who the hell actually is Joe Bloggs? A governing body has to be a legitimate, recognised entity, and if you're paying a fee to it it has to have a proper set of financials and accountability. As players we want to know our money is only being used for one purpose snd that's to promote the wellbeing of our sport and to fight our corner and not paying for expensive golfing weekends away! 

 

a very valid question, and i suspect the single biggest barrier any organisation is going to have at the outset.

 

once it's established, well known, and has the majority of the player/site/retailer base behind it then it'll be an organisation with weight like the fia or (i don't know football so just pretend i put a football appropriate acronym instead of this long-ass bracket)

 

as you say initially such an organisation is going to have no power, no weight, and very little efficacy when it starts out. hence the initial questioning of what organisations already exist that perhaps could be transformed into the role rather than starting afresh.

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But who runs UKAPU? Names please...? Why are they the right people?  Hell I can create a company in a couple of days and call it UKAGB (United Kingdom Airsoft Governing Body Limited), I can even drop a note to my MP and get him on board... Hell even get him playing a few games.... Just pay the yearly fee of £50/yr and you'll also get a patch!

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If you are paying a fee I would expect it to be run correctly with us the service users almost as a share holder within the organisation. Like @Adolf Hamsterhas said something like the FIA or FA (hopefully not as corrupt). How to set it up well that I don’t know but there are already lots of governing bodies I’m sure we could get inspiration from those 

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27 minutes ago, Adolf Hamster said:

 

are you meaning sites that are run by airsoft players as opposed to businessmen?

 

because from what i've seen those kinds of sites can have issues of becoming cliquey/unwelcoming to folks outside the core group.

 

there is value in the owner/marshall staff of a venue having a certain impartiality to the player base.

 

 

@DaktariTbrought up the ‘by players for players’

So my thoughts on what that is may or may not be the same as his.

 

I have access to land and could do my own private thing, as a team we could play or test things out.  However I won’t use it, the activity belongs on a proper site.

 

Someone with their own land, or permission, along with the ability to ensure safety and not be an anti social  nuisance could do so.  I would classify that as something private.  A bad idea to go further with it with establishing some form of ‘site’ (and on the verge of ‘outlaw’)

 

Im leaning to read his ‘by players for players’ to be a public site run by players.  Ideally in a business manner - assuming he is differing a business run as just a business by a non player against a business run by someone interested in the game 

 

I have no problem with staff being players, but they should be working not playing - and a local field for local people that’s supposed to be a public site but is a clique where the favourites never get eliminated by new strangers is toxic 

 

Outlaw (or ‘off world’) means different things to different people. In the US this could be ‘by players for players’ and run well but not a business.  Or the beginnings of what will develop Into a future site 

 

In the UK I would preferably say there is no outlaw - but the recent occurrence of Covid breaching airsoft in the woods would/could be outlaw.  Without the covid breach it may have been ‘legal’ but private land

Outlaw/off world being outside of ‘proper’ sites - and not organised properly such as renting an unusual location 

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30 minutes ago, AlphaBear said:

But who runs UKAPU? Names please...? Why are they the right people?  Hell I can create a company in a couple of days and call it UKAGB (United Kingdom Airsoft Governing Body Limited), I can even drop a note to my MP and get him on board... Hell even get him playing a few games.... Just pay the yearly fee of £50/yr and you'll also get a patch!

 

It's not that UKAPU is ready to go to be that representation. It's that I believe they are the closest thing that we have now that could become that representation.

 

Who are they?

 

UKAPU Committee Biographies | UKAPU

 

Why are they the right people? From a personal standpoint, they helped me get a RIF into the country that had been seized by border force. They have been a source of sensible legal advice for airsofters playing in the pandemic and have been almost always been correct. They have a code of Conduct, Rules of Affiliation and more. They help not only the common Airsoft player, but also site owners and retailers. 

 

Yes you could create a company no problem. But you don't already have thousands of members already signed up? 

 

UKAPU have some sort of legitimacy and outreach within the Airsoft community that others including the Airsoft Trade Federation simply don't have. 

 

----------

 

I would hate if a commercial entity represents us. Imagine if Frank at FireSupport succeeded all that time ago to get the importation of Airsoft RIFS banned unless it was imported through them? (It was a possibility!).  Imagine if the exclusive club, the old triumvirate of retailers who run UKARA represented the hobby as a whole? 

UKAPU is my preference over all other candidates. They are not perfect and need some work, but they are in a far better position then anyone else. 

 

 

Edited by Asomodai
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In addition. I am seriously thinking of throwing my hat in the ring for the vacant London Representative of UKAPU post. Though I somehow think doing the site reviews would not be possible if I did!  

 

I keep forgetting that the UKAPU Consultant Matt Furey King's Father was my wood working teacher at Secondary school back in Bristol! Matt is was also the president of the European Airsoft Association for many years.

Edited by Asomodai
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2 minutes ago, Asomodai said:

In addition. I am seriously thinking of throwing my hat in the ring for the vacant London Representative of UKAPU post. Though I somehow think doing the site reviews would not be possible if I did!  


As I say to my pupils - “dont think it - do it!!”

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7 minutes ago, Tommikka said:

@DaktariTbrought up the ‘by players for players’

 

my bad, wrong quote :P

 

12 minutes ago, Tommikka said:

I have access to land and could do my own private thing, as a team we could play or test things out.  However I won’t use it, the activity belongs on a proper site.

 

Someone with their own land, or permission, along with the ability to ensure safety and not be an anti social  nuisance could do so.  I would classify that as something private.  A bad idea to go further with it with establishing some form of ‘site’ (and on the verge of ‘outlaw’)

 

Im leaning to read his ‘by players for players’ to be a public site run by players.  Ideally in a business manner - assuming he is differing a business run as just a business by a non player against a business run by someone interested in the game 

 

I have no problem with staff being players, but they should be working not playing - and a local field for local people that’s supposed to be a public site but is a clique where the favourites never get eliminated by new strangers is toxic 

 

agree with that, there is a big difference between a private game with a few mates, and those few mates deciding to run a site, the danger of course being that they'll run things so they have fun, rather than the paying public.

 

staff being players is a tricky one, on the one hand experience as a player might help, but additionally it might hinder especially if they're bringing bad habits from their own playstyles into their work. of course this is part of what a governing body could do- guides on best practice, what to do when dealing with a cheater? what behaviour should constitute a ban? how to follow up on complaints etc.

 

 

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The thing that always worriers me about getting Airsoft classed as sport is it becomes harder to justify the need for RIFs. Our one saving grace when Hazel Blairs (thank god she got moved onto other things) was we could argue that it was more about dressing up and playing war and by having to use brightly coloured guns would have a detrimental effect and undermine the hobby to such an extent it would kill it.

 

Would would be nice to have is a body that represents the interests of the players that can maybe look at the VCRA and lobby to have the rules changed to be more black and white and even make it legal to sell a RIF rather than just having a defence against prosecution. 

 

 

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It's not a question of a fiver or a tenner.... it's a question of whether any UK airsoft body is capable of making legal representations to the lawmakers in the UK. Without having that ability the body will hold no merit in political circles. 

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11 minutes ago, Chev Chelios said:

The thing that always worriers me about getting Airsoft classed as sport is it becomes harder to justify the need for RIFs. Our one saving grace when Hazel Blairs (thank god she got moved onto other things) was we could argue that it was more about dressing up and playing war and by having to use brightly coloured guns would have a detrimental effect and undermine the hobby to such an extent it would kill it.

 

 

 

 

I am not saying it's a good example. But Paintball have Mag Fed markers that are realistic looking. 

 

Air Guns that are to all intents and purposes RIFs are allowed and they are represented by the BASC Council. Air Guns don't have to look realistic, but they do, especially in the case of 4.5mm replicas. 

 

9 minutes ago, AlphaBear said:

It's not a question of a fiver or a tenner.... it's a question of whether any UK airsoft body is capable of making legal representations to the lawmakers in the UK. Without having that ability the body will hold no merit in political circles. 

 

I am not sure if UKAPU can at the moment, but they certainly have some legal experience. 

Edited by Asomodai
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Protection from MP’s will always come from the retailers in some form, as they control supply and represent what little money there is in airsoft.

If required, a ban on two tone sales is a quick way to limit supply further.
 

In terms of sites, it would seem that the players voice is already represented by the mob on Facebook.

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The EAA (European Airsoft Association.) Which are UKAPUs partner. Stopped a bill going ahead in the EU that came very nearly to passing, that would ban Airsoft entirely within the EU. Instead they turned it around so that Airsoft was recognised as a non Firearm's "activity". Which has made Airsoft more secure then ever before in the EU. So a Players Union really does make a difference if given the power. 

Edited by Asomodai
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34 minutes ago, MiK said:

@AlphaBear You can join UKAPU for nowt ie zero, nothing, nada, zilch but there is a £5/year sub and a £10/year sub (yes, you do get a patch for £5 and get two for £10!) 

If a £10 a year secures Airsoft’s future from some knee-jerk shitkicking cause some fool has gotten hold of a RIF and got the law involved I think a tenner isn’t that much and imagine if everyone here had a £5 or £10 sub (thats’s like 1 or 2 less grenades/pints/Maccie-Dee’s a year) the amount of funds available to fight/lobby the powers that be in Westminster for the “sport” we all love ?

Just signed up.  You should rep for them, as that was a motivating post!  Plus I'm a sucker for a patch.

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8 hours ago, Asomodai said:

 

I am not saying it's a good example. But Paintball have Mag Fed markers that are realistic looking. 

Paintball fully has RIFs ((in my opinion - others may like to disagree))

 

Its been ‘tested’ a number of times.

Not just the obvious magfeds, but also hoppers that look like firearms and a police study highlighted almost the whole stock of a retailer - anything black.

In the early days of VCRA a least one batch of pistols to a distributor was ceased & destroyed.

 

With the UKPSF nothing has proceeded against paintball RIFs or potential RIFs, and though not strictly to the absolute word of the VCRA & skirmishing there has been feedback from the Home Office that UKPSF may pass the test in court.  (Preferably that home office guidance prevents something getting as far as court to get tested)

 

The look of paintball, plus the two images of either rambos or stag/hen parties hasn’t prevented any progress with Sport England etc

A benefit to paintball is the well established tournament formats, which aid the competition element with an international flavour.  If recognised status is achieved then recreational paintball will benefit as the grass roots feed to the ‘sporting’ element —— that’s government and lottery grants etc

 

Airsoft could equally follow a similar path.

On a sporty look there is speedsoft, which I think mostly remains a style rather than an established ‘sport’ version, but there’s also competition shooting with airsoft which aligns nicely with other shooting sports

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8 hours ago, Adolf Hamster said:

 

my bad, wrong quote :P

 

 

agree with that, there is a big difference between a private game with a few mates, and those few mates deciding to run a site, the danger of course being that they'll run things so they have fun, rather than the paying public.

 

staff being players is a tricky one, on the one hand experience as a player might help, but additionally it might hinder especially if they're bringing bad habits from their own playstyles into their work. of course this is part of what a governing body could do- guides on best practice, what to do when dealing with a cheater? what behaviour should constitute a ban? how to follow up on complaints etc.

 

 

I think we are on the same page with regard to staff who are players, just at a slightly different point on the page

Perhaps I have more faith in the ‘love for the game’ vs ‘Me and my mates awesome and all you other guys are using up our time’

(not ‘player marshals’* but marshals on the day) 


There is value in the player who loves the game working in the game. But also alongside the average persons weekend job - who may or may not catch the bug 

Either or neither could have the skills to deal with people, and to recognise that everyone is a paying customer

Someone needs to impart those skills - which if not happening can be a gentle or not so gentle nudge from other businesses or ‘the body’

 

The dickhead Marshall for any flavour of dickhead is a disaster 

 

Guides and best practice can and should come from ‘the body’ (which will have to originate from the community) It does need a gentle touch to ease in standards - but a bit firmer to prise out dangers

 

 
* I could be called a hypocrite there as I have put in marshal factions on a number of events - but as part of the theme and the game design, not as free Marshall’s who actually just want to play. I have to ensure that someone ‘newer’ knows what the expectations are for the role

 

((I had one where we played the ‘locals’. 
If we had costume on we were a local, with hi vis we were a marshal.

As a local we fed the storyline and missions, boosted/assisted/harassed players. 
As I was doing a circuit I had a complaint - ‘’marshal can you sort out your mate? he’s not taking his hits and keeps shooting us out when our medic heals us. We can’t get to our objective as we have to keep fighting him

 

Why is he shooting you?  We just fire a couple of shots at him then he opens up on us 

Did you listen to the rule about locals being invincible?  And they fight back?

Yes

Have you tried not shooting him?

 

..... and they cautiously walk past Will unhindered))

 

 

I have attended a special event which was meant to be  ‘by players for players’, but they had no idea what they were letting themselves into.  It became ‘by players for other paying players to fund our fun and we will all drop out of marshalling at the last minute’

 

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49 minutes ago, GenuineGerman said:

Just think if Airsoft becomes a sport we can all call ourselves athletes 😉

 

 

In my mind I can run a 4 minute mile. In reality it’s more like 15 minutes 😂

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Think we’ve reached the “put up or shut up” point , general consensus seems to be we do need something now so me personally I’m going to start pushing UKAPU as my chosen option from now on so I’ve up’ed my membership from the free one to the gold membership to give them more funds . May not be the ‘perfect’ answer or solution but they’ve got an established organisation in place (They’ve been around since 2010 , in airsoft turns that’s bloody historic !) and if everyone joins then they’ve got the backing to OFFICIALLY represent us as a sport/recognisable hobby/leisure activity .

 

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