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Private Gun Sales Banned on Facebook
By: Jessica Cherok
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Facebook and Instagram have announced that they are banning private sales of firearms on the social media sites.

While sales from licensed dealers are still allowable, person-to-person gun sales are no longer allowed under the policy revision. The move is seen as Facebook weighing in as a supporter of gun control. Private gun sales often skirt the otherwise required background checks.

Facebook, as well as other social media sites, have been accused of enabling people to evade the law. Gun control advocates argue that these behind-the-scenes sales potentially put firearms in the hands of persons who would otherwise be kept from obtaining a gun.

In its official announcement, Facebook said:

“Facebook, at its heart, is about helping people connect and communicate. Because of the diversity of people and cultures on our services, we know that people sometimes post or share things that may be controversial or objectionable. We work hard to find a balance between enabling people to express themselves about topics that are important to them, and creating an environment that is safe and respectful.”

The announcement goes on to detail Facebook’s new “educational and enforcement efforts related to privately selling regulated items.”

Gun control advocates have applauded the move as a significant step in public safety.

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About the Author
Jessica Cherok is an advocate for online privacy, campaigning for ethical data practices and the protection of personal privacy.
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