Amazon has begun automatically notifying some Amazon vendors that if they do not remove certain gun-related products from their Amazon listings they will be banned from selling on Amazon.com. Below is the text of an email sent to a gun accessories maker. I have replaced the list of products sold by the manufacturer with an X to protect their identity. The list includes common accessories that are allowed on even EBay.com, accessories that are non-essential parts and accessories that are (to the best of my knowledge) not restricted or banned anywhere in the USA.
This product has been identifed as a X. X are prohibited from sale on Amazon.
For more information on our policies, search on “Restricted Products” and “Listing Restrictions” in seller Help.
**Action Required: Within 48 hours of this notice, please review your remaining listings and make any changes necessary to ensure compliance with our policies.
Failure to comply with this request may result in the removal of your selling privileges.
We appreciate your cooperation and thank you for selling on Amazon.com.
To add insult to injury, Amazon had sales staff at SHOT Show looking for new vendors. The same manufacturer whose products are now banned met with two Amazon Vendor Managers at SHOT Show last month. Want proof? Below are their business cards (I have blacked out their names, again to protect the manufacturer) …
As a gun owner I am outraged, as someone who spends a not-insignificant portion of my income at Amazon.com I know I am going to be inconvenienced by this and as an Amazon shareholder I am concerned that this is going to become a slippery slope where more and more products become blacklisted.
UPDATE: Amazon list banned weapon-related items on this page. Included in the list is “Parts or accessories related to assault weapons”. In other words anything related to a rifle (since there is no practical distinction between a so-called “assault rifle” and any other rifle). I can confirm they are banning parts that attach to, and are useful on, bolt-action rifles as well as semi-automatic rifles.
UPDATE: Edward Clone, a author who sells his books on Amazon, has written an open letter to the company regarding their stance on selling firearm-related accessories.