Has Your Business Been Stopped from Using Google AdWords/AdSense?

The National Shooting Sports Foundation sent out an email today regarding a class action suit against Google. If you or your business had their AdWords or AdSense account canceled as a result of advertising certain items including firearms, knives, and crossbows, you may qualify as a class action plaintiff in a lawsuit filed in San Jose, California.

Read the full details below. If this pertains to you and your business, by all means investigate it. The othering and stigmatizing of those in the firearms, self-defense, and Second Amendment community by the large social media technology companies needs to stop. Hitting them in the wallet is one of the better ways to get them to back off.

If your company was prevented from using Google AdWords/AdSense you are being invited to join a class action lawsuit that is now pending in federal court in San Jose, California.

To qualify, a person or company must have had its AdWords/AdSense account suspended or terminated by Google LLC between March 2014 and September 2017 based on the fact their websites advertised “any products that (i) were designed to injure an opponent in sport, self-defense or combat such as knives, crossbows and guns or (ii) which comprised any part or component necessary to the function of a gun (iii) or which were intended for attachment to a gun” in violation of Google’s “dangerous products or services policy.”

You do not necessarily have to hold an FFL to become a plaintiff in this lawsuit. Your business does not need to be based in California, it can be located anywhere in the United States.

No attorney fees or costs will be charged to join this federal class action lawsuit. Rather, plaintiff’s counsel will be paid by court order on a contingent basis.

If you are interested in learning more or in participating in the case you should directly contact William McGrane, Esq., who is acting as putative class action counsel in the pending federal class action lawsuit by emailing him at william.mcgrane@mcgranepc.com. Mr. McGrane’s contact information and biography may be viewed at www.mcgranepc.com.

Changes Coming To NSSF Leadership

Steve Sanetti has been President and CEO of the National Shooting Sports Foundation since 2008 and was President of Sturm, Ruger before that. The NSSF has announced a succession plan for when Sanetti retires at the end of 2019. Joseph Bartozzi, Executive VP and General Counsel of Mossberg, will become the new President of NSSF on September 10, 2018 with plans that he assume the CEO role on Sanetti’s 2019 retirement.

Bartozzi has been with Mossberg for the last 32 years in a variety of positions. He is also the Chairman of the Board of SAAMI and is a NRA certified RSO. You can read more about Bartozzi in the NSSF’s announcment below.

From NSSF:

NEWTOWN, Conn. — The Board of Governors of the National Shooting Sports Foundation® (NSSF®), the trade association to the firearms industry, today announced that O.F. Mossberg & Son’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Joseph Bartozzi, will be the organization’s next President. Bartozzi will assume his new duties Sept. 10, 2018.

Joseph BartozziCurrent President and CEO Steve Sanetti will stay on in his CEO capacity through his retirement at the end of 2019, at which point Bartozzi will take over those additional duties.

Bartozzi has spent the majority of his career with Mossberg, joining the company in July 1986. His time with Mossberg included a wide variety of positions, including Quality Engineer, Quality Manager, Product Service Manager, Director of Technical Services, Director of Manufacturing Operations and Corporate Attorney.

Bartozzi currently serves as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute (SAAMI); Treasurer and Member of NSSF’s Board of Governors; Board Member and Chairman of the Governance Committee of the Council to Advance Hunting and the Shooting Sports (CAHSS); Committee Member for the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM); and Technical Advisor to the Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners (AFTE). He is also certified as a Range Safety Officer (RSO) by the National Rifle Association. Bartozzi was nominated for the 2013 “Person of the Year” by SHOT Business magazine, a nomination reprised in 2014.

In 2015, Bartozzi was admitted to the Bar of the U.S. Supreme Court. A member of the Connecticut and Maine State Bar Associations, he holds three professional certifications from the American Society for Quality (ASQ), and he is a member of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME).

“The Board of Governors agreed that Joe’s unique set of experiences and skills will provide NSSF and the firearms industry with the strong leadership needed to ensure we can continue our mission of promoting, protecting and preserving hunting and the shooting sports for generations to come,” said Robert Scott, Vice Chairman of Smith & Wesson and NSSF’s Board of Governors Chairman.

“I have known Joe Bartozzi for more than 20 years, on both personal and professional levels, and I believe he is an exemplary choice for this important position,” said Sanetti. “I know that he will work extremely hard to further our mission for the benefit of our industry and its customers, and I am very much looking forward to working together with Joe during this transitional period in the coming year.”

“I’ve had a tremendous career thus far at Mossberg, one for which I’m most thankful,” said Bartozzi. “As difficult as it is to leave that fine organization after 30 years, it is an honor to now take on a leadership position that will work to successfully conquer the challenges and seize the opportunities before us for the benefit of all our industry members.”

NSSF “Backs President’s Selection” Of Kavanaugh

The National Shooting Sports Foundation weighed in on the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy. They approve.

From NSSF:

The National Shooting Sports Foundation® (NSSF®), the trade association for the firearms, ammunition and related industries, tonight expressed its strong support for President Donald Trump’s nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to become an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court.

“We are pleased to lend our support to President Trump’s nomination of Judge Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court and urge the Senate to approve his nomination before the next term begins on the first Monday in October,” said Lawrence Keane, NSSF senior vice president and general counsel. “We are confident that Judge Kavanaugh will serve our nation with distinction as an Associate Justice of our nation’s highest court and that he will make decisions that will serve to protect the Second Amendment and other Constitutionally guaranteed rights of law-abiding Americans.”

Ryan Cleckner On Head And Scope Position

Ryan Cleckner is the author of the Long Range Shooting Handbook and a former Ranger sniper. His book is an excellent primer on getting started in long range shooting.

In this video for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, Cleckner discusses the proper positioning of your head and scope for prone long range shooting. He makes an excellent point when he says if it isn’t right, change it. The scope and stock should adjust to you and not the other way around.

NSSF Expels Dick’s Sporting Goods

The National Shooting Sports Foundation Board of Governors voted to expel Dick’s Sporting Goods from membership in the organization.  They were expelled for “conduct detrimental to the best interests of the Foundation.” The conduct was hiring a firm of anti-gun lobbyists to push more gun control.  If a company wanted to push away the hunters and shooters in their customer base, Dick’s is doing a damn good job of it.

The full release is below:

NEWTOWN, Conn. — The National Shooting Sports Foundation® (NSSF®), the trade association for the firearms, ammunition, hunting and shooting sports industries, Board of Governors today unanimously voted to expel Dick’s Sporting Goods from membership for conduct detrimental to the best interests of the Foundation.
Dick’s Sporting Goods recently hired a Washington D.C.-based government affairs firm, for “[l]obbying related to gun control.” Dick’s Sporting Goods CEO Edward W. Stack announced earlier this year the retail chain would end sales of modern sporting rifles, voluntarily raise the age to 21 to purchase firearms in their stores and called for more restrictive legislation. Dick’s later announced they would destroy the remaining modern sporting rifle inventory. NSSF responded that business decisions should be individually made, but was nonetheless disappointed and the decision does not reflect the reality of the vast majority of law-abiding gun owners.

NSSF Comment On New YouTube Policy

The National Shooting Sports Foundation has weighed in on YouTube’s new policy regarding firearms-related videos. NSSF also notes that they themselves have over 500 videos uploaded to YouTube.

The NSSF statement:

YOUTUBE’S NEW POLICY PROVIDES CAUSE FOR CONCERN

YouTube’s announcement this week of a new firearms content policy is troubling. We suspect it will be interpreted to block much more content than the stated goal of firearms and certain accessory sales. Especially worrisome is the potential for blocking educational content that serves an instructional and skill-building purpose. YouTube’s policy announcement has also served to invite political activists to flood their review staff with complaints about any video to which they may proffer manufactured outrage.

Much like Facebook, YouTube now acts as a virtual public square. The exercise of what amounts to censorship, then, can legitimately be viewed as the stifling of commercial free speech, which has constitutional protection. Such actions also impinge on the Second Amendment.

Facebook Precedent

In what we see as a parallel situation, Facebook has repeatedly shut down the pages of legitimate and reputable firearms retailers that were following Facebook’s own rules. The interpretation depended on the reviewers, the vast majority of whom have little familiarity with our business practices, let alone our products, and many of whom do not even do their work from American soil.

Both First and Second Amendment rights are essential to the liberty we enjoy as American citizens. In a very real sense, the de facto curtailment of First Amendment right of its firearm related business users, YouTube is edging toward simultaneously infringing upon the Second Amendment rights of the customers of these affected businesses.

Commerce in Firearms is Essential

As Circuit Judge Diarmuid O’Scannlain wrote in his 36-page opinion, “Our forefathers recognized that the prohibition of commerce in firearms worked to undermine the right to keep and bear arms.”

This argument can be logically extended to social media platforms. It is time that social media platform management realizes its broader collective responsibility since it commands so much of today’s virtual public square. Suppressing the expression of First Amendment protected political speech and of commercial speech is wrong, even if they think they are acting in the public interest. The resulting impingement of lawful commerce in firearms that brings with it the infringement of Second Amendment rights is equally wrong and it should stop.

The Sky Is Not Falling For Gun Sales

Gun sales in 2012, 2015, and 2016 were so high as to be outside the norm. They were at least one, if not two, standard deviations from the long term average. We know much of the difference was driven by outside events such as the Newtown murders and the widely-assumed probability that Hillary Clinton would succeed Obama as president. What we are seeing in 2017 is a return to the norm but at a higher level.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation just released their adjusted-NICS figure for December 2017. The figure of 1.6 million NICS checks was down 12% from the prior year. That said, it still was the 5th highest December for the adjusted NICS checks on record.

Elsewhere, I’ve read that 2017 was the fourth highest year on record for gun sales as measured by the NSSF adjusted NICS checks. In terms of unadjusted NICS checks, it was the second highest year on record after 2016.

It is important to remember that NICS checks in and of themselves do not have a one-to-one correlation with gun sales. There can be more than one firearm on a single Form 4473. Likewise, carry permits from states like North Carolina and Texas substitute for NICS checks. Finally, many states use the NICS system for their original and continuing checks on those that they’ve issued carry permits.

I will be heading to the SHOT Show which begins in two weeks. I will be reporting regularly on what I’m seeing and what I’m hearing. I am particularly interested in the tenor of conversations I have with dealers.

Rimfire Challenge To Transition From NSSF To RCSA

Despite what Asheville’s Thomas Wolfe once wrote, you can go home again.

The Ruger Rimfire Challenge was originally developed by Ken Jorgenson of Ruger, Michael Bane, and the late Nelson Dymond. In 2014, the responsibility for running the Ruger Rimfire Challenge passed to the National Shooting Sports Foundation and it became known as the NSSF Rimfire Challenge. On January 1, 2018, the Rimfire Challenge will pass to a new non-profit organization run by Jorgenson and Bane called the Rimfire Challenge Shooting Association. Thus, it will have closed the circle and returned home to its founders.

Below is the NSSF’s press release, in part, on the transition:

NEWTOWN, Conn. — The National Shooting Sports Foundation® (NSSF®), the trade association for the firearms industry, is proud to announce that the NSSF Rimfire Challenge will be transitioned to a new organization: the Rimfire Challenge Shooting Association. The transition takes place Jan. 1, 2018.


Originally developed by Sturm, Ruger & Co.’s Ken Jorgenson, along with author and TV personality Michael Bane and the late Nelson Dymond, a long-time and well-known shooting match director who held a strong passion for rimfire firearms, the program was first known as the Ruger Rimfire Challenge. NSSF took over the administration of the program in 2014, changing its name to the NSSF Rimfire Challenge. The new organization will be led once again by Ken Jorgensen and Michael Bane.


Designed to introduce new shooters to the shooting sports in an exciting, family-friendly format, Rimfire Challenge matches focus on competition with .22-caliber rifles and pistols. Matches are open to shooters of all ages and shooting experience levels, with events conducted at ranges nationwide and an annual World Championship taking place each October.


“It’s truly a great thing to see this program return home to the people who had this wonderful idea to begin with,” said Tisma Juett, NSSF Manager, Recruitment and Retention. “The NSSF is proud to have been a part of growing a shooting sport that has proven to be such a wonderful activity for mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, neighbors and friends in which to participate. We wish Ken and Michael much success and look forward to many more firearms owners joining the shooting sports with them.”


“I am excited to once again be involved in the day to day operation of the Rimfire Challenge events,” said Jorgenson. “The concept originally created by Nelson and implemented as part of the Ruger Rimfire Challenge is as valid today as it was in the beginning. We will work to continue that vision and grow the rimfire competition opportunities for shooters of all skill levels.”


“I could not be happier to once again be a part of the Rimfire Challenge!” Bane added. “It is a wonderful sport, a way to bring whole families into the competition. Ken and I are committed to bringing the Rimfire Challenge to the next level. It’s going to be fun!”

Michael Bane makes the announcement of the change on the video portion of his weekly podcast. You can see it at this link. As he notes, the first year will be about stability and communication. He doesn’t see any major rule changes coming immediately. The existing rulebook along with examples of courses of fire can be found here.

All shooting competitions go through life cycles and I think change like this is important. New management and new ideas along with a fairly low cost of entry should help the Rimfire Challenge continue growing and bringing in new shooters. The more that we can show that the shooting sports are fun, the less likely that the gun prohibitionists will be to convince the general public that guns are “icky”.

NSSF/SAAMI Joint Statement On Las Vegas Tragedy (And Bump Fire Stocks)

The National Shooting Sports Federation and the Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute seem to be taking the same approach as the NRA on bump fire stocks: have the BATFE evaluate them under the existing law. All three groups are intent on keeping Congress out of this fight for the time being. They would prefer to have an agency regulation on the stocks than to have new legislation which would most likely go much further. Feinstein’s S.1916 would certainly do that.

The joint statement is below:

Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the families and loved ones of all those killed and injured in the criminal attack in Las Vegas. The manufacture, distribution and sale of automatic firearms and their components has been stringently regulated by federal laws since 1934. We believe the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) should interpret and enforce existing laws and regulations. We call upon ATF to conduct a prompt review and evaluation of aftermarket trigger activation devices such as bump stocks to determine whether they are lawful to install and use on a firearm under the National Firearms Act of 1934 (NFA), or whether, if they have no function or purpose other than to convert a conventional firearm into an automatic firearm, they are regulated items under the NFA. We urge Congress to allow ATF to complete its review before considering any legislation so that any policy decisions can be informed by the facts and ATF’s analysis.