SHOT Show Swag Vipers

I learned a new phrase this week. It is “swag viper”.

A swag viper is someone who goes to the SHOT Show, vacuums up every bit of swag exhibitors have at their booths, and then puts it up for sale on EBay shortly thereafter. The swag ranges from giveaway caps and T-shirts to limited edition patches to 2023 SHOT Show LaRue Tactical “dillos”.

Below is some of the swag I got at the SHOT Show this year. I didn’t go out of my way to collect patches…much. I did make sure to get a complete set of the hexagonal Tuff Products patches. I know I gave out many more patches than I collected.

I saw the Geissele badge holders going for $20 on Ebay. The LaRue Tactical commemorative dillo is still selling for close to $50. The most expensive patch soon after the show was the Liberal Gun Club unicorn patch which was selling for $189. It has fallen in price to “only” $89. Currently, the most expensive thing is 50 Glock giveaway pens going for almost $200.

I collect the patches and other swag as a remembrance of the good times I had at the SHOT Show, the people I met, and the companies I visited. Eventually, all the patches will go on a display board and hung somewhere in the house.

I know when I give out patches it is to remind people of my blog. Likewise, the exhibitors give out patches to attract people to their booth and to thank them for stopping by. Companies like Original S.W.A.T footwear have patch boards and a new patch for each day of SHOT. In that case, it is leave a patch, get a patch. I don’t think any company gives out patches only to see them being resold within hours on Ebay.

I have no problem with someone selling off a patch collection accumulated over the years nor do I have a problem with someone trading a patch or selling a couple here and there. What I do find objectionable are businesses vacuuming up swag only to sell it on Ebay. They go by cutesy names like “nevadatreasures” and “kristiescountlesscollectibles“.

How re-sellers like this get the swag is unknown. I just wish the swag vipers would go away.