Shooters like you and I have a lot of experience ...and understand how shell boxes are marked....but litterally every time I go to my gun club...someone asks about their shells, are they ok to shoot -- and they often, and with newbies almost all the time ...mix up the DR EQ with the length - and unfortunately have little to no idea of what they mean .....they just think any old 20ga shell will fit and fire in any 20ga gun .... / and the different shell companies mark their boxes differently ...and sometimes it takes a minute to really study what you have in the box..
True. And you SHOULD adjust the mirrors and find the controls in your rental car before launching, but following people out of the airports it is apparent that DON'T happen.
The problem as I see it today is that shotguns are not like video games. The instant gratification is fraught with risk. If you screw up you can't just reboot, but people are unwilling to spend any time reading and learning before jumping in with both feet. I knew a LOT about shotguns and rifles, and a little bit about handguns, before I got my own very first gun - a single shot .22 - selling Christmas cards 54 years ago at age ten. I am not an education expert, but I have seen the attention span of new shooters I have been teaching going down over the years like a rock in the pond. I don't have an answer, but I think disabusing people of the idea that every single part of everything in life must be fun would be a good start. That and making them learn how to read.