Facebook, Instagram crack down on gun sales

2014-03-06 15:28

San Francisco – Facebook and its photo-sharing subsidiary Instagram will delete posts offering to buy or sell guns without background checks.

In an effort to curb what gun-control advocates say is the increasing use of the social networks to circumvent checks and controls on firearm sales, Facebook and Instagram will also bar users under 18 from viewing gun offers posted by individuals or groups.

“We will not permit people to post offers to sell regulated items that indicate a willingness to evade or help others evade the law,” Facebook said.

The move by the world’s largest social network and Instagram may add fuel to an already intense debate over US gun rights, following a series of mass shootings across the country.

A spate of shootings in recent weeks across the US has renewed questions about the vulnerability of public places like shopping centres and schools, and sparked fresh calls for stiffer gun controls such as universal background checks and limitations on the sale of ammunition.

States like Connecticut and New York have passed a series of new gun measures. But opponents, including the National Rifle Association, the nation’s leading gun rights lobby, argue that tighter restrictions would unfairly limit the rights of responsible gun owners.

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