Markey Statement on Facebook and Instagram Policy to Limit Gun Sales

In November, lawmaker called on Instagram to prohibit its service for the marketing and sale of guns


Washington (March 5, 2014) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), a member of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, today commended Facebook and Instagram for making a change to their policies in an effort to address the sale of guns on their services. In an announcement today, the companies unveiled a new policy that would limit the unlawful sale of guns on their sites by blocking any posts that violate the law, notifying users of their legal obligations to comply with state regulations, and limiting the viewing of sales posts to those over the age of 18. In November 2013, Senator Markey wrote to Instagram urging the popular photo and video sharing online service to prohibit the use of its service to enable sales of firearms, consistent with policies adopted by other popular online marketplace entities. 


“Instagram should be for selfies, not semi-automatics. I commend Facebook and Instagram for taking this first step to address the sale of these deadly weapons on their sites and working to ensure that users comply with state and federal laws. I urge Facebook and Instagram to continue to build upon this positive policy change, leading to a complete ban on the sale of guns on its platforms. I look forward to working with gun safety organizations and other stakeholders in the effort to stem the tide of gun violence in our country.” 


A copy of Instagram’s response to Senator Markey can be found HERE.