Website aims to pickup gun buyers leaving Facebook

A firearms classifieds website recently announced that all local and person to person private sales of firearms conducted through its website will be free of charge.

GunsAmerica, a firearms classifieds website that launched in 1997, introduced its program called “FREE LOCAL” at the beginning of March as a way to promote private person-to-person sales, as well as sales by dealers to consumers at the local level.

Basically the program would eliminate the website’s posting fee and aftersale fees for any gun sales that occur within a 50-mile radius, from zip code to zip code. Sellers would be able to post five “Free Local” ads at a time, which wouldn’t expire for 30 days. The ads will be listed by date, and sellers will be able to renew their ads twice.

This program launch comes closely on the heels of an announcement earlier this year by Facebook that the private transfer of firearms through the social media giant’s website would no longer be allowed — a move that has been praised by gun control supporters.

Several firearms retailers have had their pages taken down as a result of Facebook’s action, though some — such as this Kentucky gun shop — have been able to get their pages reinstated to the social media platform.

However, recent reports from the Middle East and United Kingdom have indicated that several pages and communities are still in use by people in Middle Eastern nations to facilitate the transfer firearms, rockets, missiles, grenades, body armor and even tanks.

But the move by Facebook has encouraged others to jump ship, and move their firearms discussion and trade communities to other platforms — such as MeWe and Gun District.

Gun District’s founder told Guns.com in February that since the change by Facebook, they’d been averaging 7,000 to 10,000 new members a day.

While this freshly-launched program of GunsAmerica appears to encourage private sales of firearms, at least one portion of the executive orders intended to reduce gun violence that President Barack Obama announced in January appears to be aimed at tightening down on private gun sales.

According to a White House fact sheet, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives would be clarifying that it doesn’t matter if the transactions taking place occur at a physical shop, over the internet or privately, person-to-person, anyone “engaged in the business” of dealing in firearms is required to hold a federal firearms license.

GunsAmerica didn’t respond to a request for comment Friday.