Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Waiting For Heller

As David Hardy over at Of Arms and the Law says, it either will or it won't come today...the Supremes are meeting in public session in an hour.

In the meanwhile, I'm in the Springs at NSSF's Shooting Sports Summit, which is not nearly as contentious as it might be...yesterday was more of a listening day than today promises to be. I put together a podcast last night covering the issues that we've been talking should be up in an hour or so.

Lot of blogging from Bitter Bitch, Sebastian at Snowflakes in Hell, Say Uncle and others. I'm too groggy to list them all this, as I was up until the wee hours fighting the podcast...technical problems...a low low upload speed from the host hotel. As soon as I get home I'll be getting a wireless Internet card!

In the meanwhile, NSSF Prez Steve Sanetti issued the following statement last night (actually, I read it on his cellphone at the Outdoor Channel/SCI dinner):
NSSF Statement on Shooting Sports Summit Action Items

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) - the trade association for the firearms, ammunition, hunting and shooting sports industry -- has issued the following statement following the concern by some regarding the action items listed for discussion as part of the Shooting Sports Summit:

The action items presented as part of the NSSF Shooting Sports Summit have been developed by researchers predicated upon three years of public opinion research.

The purpose of the summit is to take the intelligence that has been gathered concerning the public opinions of shooters and non-shooters alike and take our ideas and meld them into coherent new programs and policies to attract, retain and re-introduce participants into the shooting sports – ALL the shooting sports.

NSSF has programs for rifles, shotguns, pistols and revolvers. And, as our motto says, we are always shooting for more.

The intelligence gatherers, like any effective reconnaissance team, studied the opinions we must face and reported their suggestions. As to the strengths and weaknesses of possible courses of action, NSSF does not have to accept their recommendations. All decisions as to what actions NSSF will take will be made by NSSF, after full discussions and consideration of all points of view.
The NSSF has no intention of abandoning pistol shooters. Our very successful First Shots program is specifically designed and targeted to encourage pistol sports shooting. Much of the NSSF staff, including its new president, have been pistol shooting both recreationally and competitively for decades – and, in fact, some have worked in the handgun industry.

NSSF looks forward to completing a successful summit, helping to foster a strong future for all of the shooting sports.
I think it's a good statement. I understand that NSSF can't throw their 3-year research project under the bus, and there is a lot of good information in the document that helped clarify my understanding of where we are right now. As I've said in an earlier post, the study confirms what I and many others have said — the shooting sports are the tail wagging the dog.

In my podcast, I refuse to let Responsive Management and lead research Mark Damian Duda off the hook...he has confused "a lot of research" with "the right research" in many place, and he desperately needs to read a basic primer on researcher bias...again, as Jim Shepherd andI say in the podcast, "bias" in this case isn't a dirty word, just a bad one. When I co-authered the book on new product development in world-class corporations a few years back, I outlined the problems with surveys and focus groups and strongly urged product managers to look beyond these often profoundly flawed tools before making critical decisions. Duda's probably got a little shrine in his house where he bruns incense at the alter of the God of Focus Groups, and in this case his gods failed him badly.

More later...gotta get some coffee before SCOTUS...lots and lots of coffee!


Anonymous said...

Focus group polling and bias...those were very illuminating thoughts sir. I seem to faintly recall some brief note-taking in Marketing 101 and maybe Sociology 101 back in the early 1990's.

Hello Democrats (for that matter hello GOP)...can you smell what Bane's cooking???

Anonymous said...

No Bias...No Merit!