questionswhy does google, paypal, ebay and amazon restrict…

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@webyshops: When ever I read OP I always think Original Poster Person or OPP, yeah you know them

It's a sickness really.

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@wilfbrim: You absolutely can buy a gun off of armslist through a PPT with no FFL, no paperwork, no background check. There is nothing on the site that says you have to do a transaction through an FFL. They only advise you to contact your local sheriff or BATF office to determine your legal responsibilities. PPTs outside an FFL are perfectly legal in many states. The article he linked gave clear sources of actual cases involving PPT transactions on armslist where people wouldn't have been able to purchase through an FFL. I'm always amazed at people on either side of a political argument who are willing to completely overlook documented facts that don't promote their viewpoint while making their own patently false claims and calling it gospel.

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@caffeine_dude: The "sting" that you brought up probably has something to do with regulations regarding an FFL holder selling guns as a PPT. An FFL can sell his personal firearms in a PPT but he must have had them in his "personal book" for over a year. Otherwise, the firearm must be transferred through an FFL, either the seller or a third party. I imagine the guy was buying stuff from his own inventory and then selling it through PPT at a markup, which is illegal if you are an FFL. Ironically, if you don't have an FFL it's perfectly legal to purchase a gun from an FFL and sell it for a markup through a PPT. The only way they can bust you for that is if you know the person you're selling to cannot pass a background check.

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@webyshops: OP refers to the Original Poster, in this case that would be you.

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@wilfbrim: I do not know how to PM trough Woot. :-) You can send me an email to morlov@webyshops.com

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@nmchapma: I did not intend to insult the OP. (his situation is obvious) and he is right google is wrong (or at least wrong for now, maybe Google is in the processes of change). The OP is a sporting goods shop first.
I was responding to something I read not to the OP.

My apologies to the OP if I hurt his\her feelings.

But after thinking about this for a minute. To the OP what was the content of the advertisement vs the content of the other sporting goods store, perhaps we are getting half the story, and mayhaps this is not as obvious as I first thought.
(think when the giant ad for lingerie that was NSFW on deals.) If your ad had a lingerie clad woman carrying a glock that would be NSFW and school. Come to think of it, a giant gun alone would be NSFW and school.

Google is making a play for the classroom.

My apologies to the OP if I hurt her\his feelings again.
edit That is right I used the word mayhaps in my question, so give me some double word score action. 7 left.

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an article from the National Shoting Sports Foundation (NSSF). Remember they have a dog in this race as a shooting organization but i think that they still make a fair point.

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@dows: Never! I need the occasional AtC disagreement. It's like my coffee. Otherwise, I'd have no reason to go to work :-)

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@nmchapma: Agreed. Just was making a snarky comment. Hope you'll forgive me!

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@dows: Of course not. and that kind of thing is pretty impossible to stop, it's also not all bad. forcing private sells to happen through dealers will do nothing. but that's not what OP is trying to do, OP runs a legit business selling and shipping legal products to legal reciepients. None of this really has anything to do with the question. (not that ever stay on topic around here anyway)

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@wilfbrim: True, but this doesn't stop people from meeting up in the parking lot outside of the FFL to do a "private trade."

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@caffeine_dude: You are correct that the private sell of a firearm does not always require a background check and in fact there is often no way to transfer ownership of the gun (most of the time a notorized letter works though). BUT in order to ship a gun it must be received by an FFL dealer who WILL perform a background check.

OP is a lisenced dealer following all necessary rules and regulations. It's kinda insulting to ask him if thats how he wants to end up. All he's trying to do is fix a double standard and is trying to understand why a company won't advertise (NOT sell) his product. He's made no mention of selling around federal regulations or selling anything without the proper background checks.

I just don't see the relationship between whats happening there and this thread.

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@wilfbrim: @nmchapma:
My understanding is a person to person deal is does not require the background check. (This may not be true in every state).

I watched a 'sting' where a gun shop owner was selling guns on a 'craigslist for guns' to help his customer avoid the background checks and wait periods.
His side of the story: He claimed he had every right to sell guns on the site as a citizen.
The counter his side of his story he had many guns for sale on the site.

To be fair, a few bad apples can ruin the bunch, but you know what will end up on the TV and what will not.

That was my point for the link, sorry I did not spell it out.

I do not remember the program but it was on one of the major networks.

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@webyshops: No one is taking away your rights to advertise, They're just refusing to do it for you.

No doubt the double standard sucks, but no one is infringing on your right to do anything.

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@k3nd0: Appreciate the sympathy. Check us out when you get a chance. We have a lot of good deals and foot traffic has been growing rapidly.

A lot of discussion around gun sales centers on private buyers selling to people who can't pass background checks. I get that and safeguards should be in place to cover this.

But I also believe that law abiding and tax paying businesses that are registered with ATF and have an FFL and who maintain strict controls on all firearm sales should be able to advertise to citizens that are willing to go through the proper steps and acquire firearms legally.

To prevent us from advertising is akin to taking away our free speech rights.

God Bless America!!!

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@webyshops: There are other more directed ways to advertise and get the word out. There are some active subreddits which welcome deals on firearms and ammo. Send me a PM and I'll point you in the right direction. I won't even require $50 off my first order ;-)

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@caffeine_dude: That was a complete piece of trash. You cannot legally buy any firearm off armslist (or gunbroker, or any other place) without the transaction going through a Federal Firearms License (FFL) holder. Period. No discussion. All background checks and all other legal niceties in BOTH states (shipping and receiving) must be met.

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@caffeine_dude: Not really sure how that applies. Buying a gun from him requires a background check.

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@bsmith1: Guns are inert ummm'k. On the other hand, criminals with guns are something to worry about.

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@webyshops: Wow. Neither Bass Pro nor Cabelas sell firearms online but they both sell ammo and mags. I would be inclined to sue but then I would remember that google has much deeper pockets than I do. I might also try separating the outdoor equipment from the firearms with different DBAs and then applying for adwords with the "new" company. In any case, good luck man. I noticed you guys are in Arlington so I may have to pay you a visit.

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@k3nd0: we took the firearms off during the appeal process, but Google said it did not matter. Even magazines disqualified us from being able to use Adwords.

We are in the process of reworking the whole site and firearms will be back on. At this juncture - we are moving forward with or without Google. :-)

God Bless America!!!

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I believe the potentially bad PR reason, but I also believe that all it takes is 1 shooting and everyone from the manufacturer to the end user could be sued, and worse, possibly prosecuted in some areas by remarkably overzealous DAs misinterpreting badly written laws.

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@webyshops: What am I missing here? I can't find any links on webyshops.com to any firearms at all. I tried shopping by brand and picked Springfield Armory and the only thing that came up was a magazine.

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Almost certainly the liability. Just like it's almost impossible to sell used software on eBay. They're not going to check your FFL - they wouldn't know how and it's too much work. The amount of fraud and illegal activity that goes under that category is probably higher than you'd guess. It sounds like a lousy business to be in, since you have to rely on special providers for just about everything. But I'm also not surprised. Cabela's and Bass Pro get a pass because they've heard of them. It's completely wrong of them to give them an exception, but I'm sure the money's good.

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@cengland0: I think you are right, but it's:

1) hypocritical to let Cabelas and Bass Pro advertise, while telling smaller companies that they are in violation

2) advertising is akin to free speech, to the extent that it is not that different from buying blog space and posting your opinion/offer there

3) It is not Google's responsibility to keep up with state specific regulations - it is up to end user

In the end, as in most cases, it's all about the money. They perceive that it would cost them more to deal with legal challenges and potential fall out than the revenue they would be getting from business that are in the firearm industry.

I just wish they would not try to hide behind "Do No Evil" principle, because obviously they do not live it, by picking and choosing which companies they allow to advertise and which ones they suspend.

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Guns are bad, m'kay? And if you use guns, well that's bad. m'kay?

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@k3nd0: we do have an FFL and we do robust local business, but we really want to take it to the next level. We have the capabilities to be like Bud's. We just did not expect to get suspended by Google for having the guns on our site.

What is interesting is that we told them that we can exclude our firearms from ads that we run on Google, and that was not good enough. They said as long as the customer can find guns on your site even if they came looking for a tent - we violated their policy.

We could even live with that if they applied it universally to everyone and not just smaller companies that do not have the ad budgets of Cabelas or BassPro. It's the double standard/hypocrisy that bugs us even more than their unwillingness to do it.

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Edit: I mean the ads on these sites might not actually be very beneficial for the sellers or the people interested in buying.

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I don't know about banning ads from legitimate FFL dealers, but I'm sure ebay and craigslist ban them to avoid any liability from personal sales. That's messed up that there's a double standard with Bass Pro, but I guess when you're that big you can afford to influence a company's policy. Actually, I just looked at your site for the first time and I'm guessing you don't even have an FFL since you're only selling ammo and accessories? Did you ask google what exactly constituted "descriptions of firearms?"

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@nmchapma: You're absolutely right. I think the companies selling firearms online might not think the cost of advertising is worth it measured up against the potential flack they may receive. Advertising online (especially with google adwords and amazon) is expensive enough as it is, and most people that buy firearms frequently (and know what they're doing) are more likely to be buying from private FFLs, and companies like Bud's. Amazon/eBay/Google just simply aren't very intriguing marketplaces for people serious about buying firearms. It'd be like going to buy something that you need to be able to depend your life on at a dollar store that also sells plastic silverware.

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@moondrake: He's not talking about Amazon selling the gun, just advertising it.

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@dows: @cengland0: The shipment of firearms is easily taken care of by by having the firearm shipped to a licensed dealer in your area. Pretty much every company selling firearms online does this no matter where the firearm is headed. If the firearm isn't allowed inthat state then the dealer won't accept shipment. That dealer is also the one who does the background check. The online sale of firearms is highly regulated. I also do not understand why the simple advertising of such is a problem.

My guess is politics, guns are a dicey issue and if they agree to advertise them then maybe they feel like it would be seen as picking a side, which could loose business. That's just a guess.

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Plus it's potentially a PR nightmare. If a spree killer's gun comes from Joe's Gun Shop, that's not news. But if they buy it through EBay or Amazon, that's news. We've already heard some national reports of abuses on Craigslist. None of these businesses want that kind of PR.

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Added to @cengland0 's point, another issue is that all of these sites offer international shipping. Not only are there different laws in different states that may hinder the sale of firearms online, it is extremely risky (and sometimes illegal) to even have your listing VISIBLE to people in other countries. On a side note, I happen to believe that many firearms/weapons retailers are not that interested in online sales because of all of this rigmarole. It's honestly just not worth the money/time/risk.

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Just guessing but here are a couple ideas:

1. It's highly political.
2. Different laws in different states and hard to keep up with it all.
3. eBay sales would be difficult to determine if they are going through the proper background checks.