Apparently this is really prevalent, and it's a shame - not only for the suppliers, but for the rest of us as planners, whose overall reputation suffers as a result.
In the interest of full disclosure, I've been a shrimper before - I accepted invitations in the past, just because I knew colleagues would be there, and it would be a good time. Shame on me. I'm not here just to preach, I'm here to make a change myself.
I tried to get into the head of other shrimpers to see what other reasons there might be to do this. Perhaps they've been pestered by a supplier enough, that they just show up to appease him or her? Maybe they like to attend to make a good impression, to build a relationship with that supplier in the off chance that they may someday have business to give?
Whatever the intention, whether good or ill, it's time for a change. It's bad enough that there's a average no-show rate of 50% when planners RSVP for supplier events, but when those who DO show up are shrimpers, what a waste of time and money.
Have you ever been a shrimper? What was your reason? Are you willing to come along with me into the No Shrimping Zone?