Friday, March 7, 2014

New Facebook Policy Will Not Do Enough to Prevent Unchecked Gun Sales According to the Brady Campaign

March 5, 2014 Jennifer Fuson 202-370-8128
Statement from Dan Gross, Heidi Yewman, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
“This new policy is not a victory because Facebook continues to make it too easy for dangerous people to evade a background check when buying guns. A mere warning to follow the law and community-based reporting will not do enough to prevent unchecked gun sales to dangerous people,” says Daniel Gross, President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. “As we and thousands of others have told Facebook, unlicensed gun sales have no place on the social network. Facebook should prohibit all posts that advertise the unlicensed sale or transfer of firearms in the United States. Sadly, it’s only a matter of time before a gun purchased through Facebook without a background check is used in a terrible tragedy. ”
“Facebook and Instagram are great platforms to share opinions, memories and photos, but they shouldn’t be providing opportunities for criminals to evade background checks and get guns,” says Heidi Yewman, spokesperson for the Million Mom March and Brady Campaign Chapters. “As a parent, I’m disappointed that an industry leader like Facebook is way behind on such an important issue involving the safety and security of us all. I stand with moms across the country and ask that Facebook and Instagram join Craigslist, Google and eBay and prohibit unlicensed gun sales.”


  1. I've figured out what's going on, Mikeb. See, the Brady Campaign is actually a pro-gun group, very deeply undercover, and is spinning it this way just to undermine the Bloomberg Moms' (BMs) historic victory.

    Does that sound right to you?

  2. And as we've been saying--things will continue much as they have--people wishing to sell a gun will post something on their wall. They may get reported, which will result in them receiving a message reminding them to follow the law--i.e. don't sell to residents of another state, don't sell to a known prohibited person, etc.

    Glad you spent so much time telling Kurt and me that we were liars and deluded when all we were doing was agreeing with the Brady Campaign's assessment of this policy.

  3. So, Mikeb, you're admitting that Kurt and others were right all along?

    But Dapper Dan needs to learn that in most states, "unlicensed" sales are legal, and that's how we like it.

  4. Well, Simon provided a link to the earlier Brady statement. I only saw this one today.

    I still say it's a major victory, as opposed, let's say, to a statement that no restrictions or limitations will be issued to Facebook users who advertise guns. Just like Starbucks could have gone further, what they did was a major victory for our side. Same with Facebook.

    1. But do you think it will significantly reduce the number of guns sold without a background check? If so, wanna buy a bridge?

      And if not, are you ready to admit that reducing "gun violence" isn't the objective, and piling new restrictions on gun owners is?

    2. Besides, how can you claim that the new policy is a major victory, when you have already said that the old policy was?

      Hell, as triumphant as you were about the old policy, you should have signed the petitions calling on Facebook to keep the policy as it was.

    3. Except restrictions and limitations are not what's being issued. Reminder emails are what's being issued. Hey, if that's what satisfies you, let's keep going down that road for all the policies you promote.

    4. It's a major award!

  5. What the Bloomberg Moms (BMs) demanded (my emphasis added):

    Join us in urging Facebook and Instagram to immediately enact a policy prohibiting all gun sales and trades—especially those among private sellers—on their platforms.

    Here's what they got, according to the BMs themselves:

    People under 18 not allowed to view private gun sale posts (what's to stop them from making a second account claiming to be 18?)

    Users can flag "suspicious" posts (couldn't they do so before?)

    If the "for sale" post mentions "no background check," FB deletes it (what's to stop prospective buyers and sellers from establishing that in private conversation?)

    FB will delete posts offering to sell guns across state lines (same as above)

    Facebook will continue to report threatening gun-related posts to law enforcement ("will continue," as in no change)

    Users have to "acknowledge" applicable laws (so?)

    All gun-related Facebook pages and groups have to acknowledge the laws that apply to them, and must display this information prominently. Once reported, they’ll be taken down temporarily until they do so. (again, so?)

    Searching Instagram for gun-related hashtags will prompt a warning and require users to acknowledge gun sale laws before viewing search results (and again, so?)

    Facebook will target ads at users interested in gun-related pages with information on gun sale laws — including background checks requirements (once more, so?)

    Do those nine things, combined, come even close to equaling the demanded "prohibit[ion on] all gun sales and trades—especially those among private sellers"?

    Not in the real world.

    Keep enjoying that "victory" (snicker).

    1. Mike,

      Go here and you can buy something to commemorate that major victory:

    2. That must be Italian, since the box is marked, fra-gi-le.

    3. Out of curiosity, has that movie been discussed here before? I wonder if it makes Mike and his cohorts ill, or if they're able to loosen up enough to enjoy it.

    4. We've mentioned it from time to time.

    5. The leg lamp - I don't get it? What movie?

    6. You'll shoot your eye out, kid.

    7. You keep saying this is a major victory--the lamp was a major award.

  6. Boy--the Brady Bunch isn't happy at all, Mikeb. Check out their top eunuch as quoted in the New York Times:

    And Daniel Gross, president of one of the largest gun control groups, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, said little had been achieved.

    “I wouldn’t even call this a meaningful first step,” Mr. Gross said. “There’s a simple solution here. Facebook should be prohibiting any post that advertises the unlicensed sale or transfer of firearms in the U.S.”

    They go into detailed whining here (excerpt):

    1) Unlicensed Sellers Can Still Post Guns For Sale on Facebook and Instagram

    Google, Craigslist, and eBay all prohibit unlicensed sellers from advertising guns for sale. Facebook has failed to meet the bar set by these other websites.
    2) Community Monitoring Is Inadequate

    Instead of a more sophisticated technical solution, Facebook will rely on solely on their members to report violations leaving innumerable gun ads untouched.
    3) The Reminders to Comply with Gun Laws Are Not Visible Enough

    Most sellers will never see important messages reminding them to comply with gun laws. Facebook will only send reminders to a seller when their post is reported and will allow administrators of gun pages to relegate this information to the About Us section.

    For these reasons and more Facebook should prohibit all posts that advertise the unlicensed sale or transfer of firearms in the United States.

    Isn't that weird, Mikeb? This historic, landmark, monumental victory you've been gloating about so triumphantly, and the Brady Bunch has nothing but complaints.

    Strange (snicker).

  7. Hey, Mikeb--still basking in the glow of "gun control's" epic "victory" with regard to Facebook? This guy seems a lot less impressed.

    Why do you think he's such a Negative Nelly?