The Vegas Strip has always had a love-hate relationship with handbillers, also referred to as “porn slappers.” These intrepid folks distribute marketing flyers, often for escort services, along Las Vegas Boulevard.
Lately, the “slapper” part of “porn slapper” has become a misnomer, since most handbiller companies are adhering to a voluntary agreement intended to reduce complaints. The handbillers have agreed to stay 20 feet away from crosswalks, not offer material to people who look younger than 25, and to hand out material toward visitor torsos, rather than their faces. They’ve also agree not to snap the cards. Hey, it’s something! Read more.
Oh, and the handbillers have also agreed to clean up the litter that results from their activities. That was always a pet peeve of ours, so you go, handbillers.
During a recent stroll on the Strip, we saw something for the first time: A handbiller wearing what’s called a QR code. A QR code, or “quick response” code, is much like a barcode, and when scanned by a smartphone, can connect a user to a Web site.
Typically, handbillers wear T-shirts with giant phone numbers and pithy sayings like, “Girls, Girls, Girls” or “Direct to your room.” But Las Vegas marketers have always been quick to take advantage of technology, what with their QR codes and their Tweeting and their Facebooking and their Foursquaring.
So, the next time you encounter a handbiller, just smile and politely decline their offer of literature. Then scan them, just for kicks.
You never know what you’ll see next in Las Vegas.