Protocol at a Pin Swap

PCC Bill Smith, LITPC Past President

The question of proper protocol at the various pin swap meals (breakfast/dinner) has often been raised by pin swap chairpersons. Although there's probably no best way to answer this question, the bottom line is that simple courtesy sort of dictates that some of the leaders in our pin trading community should be recognized when we are together at these functions. This is another way the organizing committee can sort of brag about their ability to attract these leaders to their function. At many of the swaps these days, there are usually members of the LITPC Board of Directors, and these folks should be introduced. We would suggest that in order not to overlook anyone, the person selected to do the introductions should do some advanced checking to confirm that the list is complete. Overlooking an individual is always embarrassing to all concerned. In addition to recognizing the LITPC officials, it's nice to recognize the Presidents who are in attendance from other pin trading clubs.

While the above addresses the visiting leaders, let's not forget to recognize our own people.We're talking about the founding members of the host pin trading club. It was these traders who took the initiative to give "birth" to our respective organizations and it is always nice to give them a little recognition at events such as this. Another group is the LITPC Hall of Fame members. These folks are always recognized at the annual LITPC events, but many of our traders in the pin trading community do not or cannot attend these gatherings. Obviously, recognizing them by individual name is preferred. However, if this is not possible, you can always ask them to stand and be recognized as a group.

Another courtesy that would be most appreciated by all concerned is the opportunity for a representative of a future pin swap to come to the podium to make announcements about their upcoming activity. This is in addition to the opportunity for these folks to distribute swap fliers during the swap. Placing this material on the tables where people are going to eat their breakfast is usually a big waste since most are not interested in reading at that time, Having a special table set up somewhere in the swap area where visiting pin trading club representatives can place membership application forms and other material about their organization is a much better idea. Some of the newer folks in pin trading may not even be aware that they are welcome to become associate members of the several pin trading clubs.

Any thing that we can do to make people feel welcome at our swaps and other gatherings is good for pin trading in general. If proper protocol will contribute to that overall goal, then let's do it!!!