Facebook Moves to Ban Private Gun Sales on Its Site


Facebook is banning private sales of guns on its flagship social network and its Instagram photo-sharing service, a move meant to clamp down on unlicensed gun transactions.

Facebook already prohibits people from offering marijuana, pharmaceuticals and illegal drugs for sale, and the company said on Friday that it was updating its policy to include guns. The ban applies to private, person-to-person sales of guns. Licensed gun dealers and gun clubs can still maintain Facebook pages and post on Instagram.

Although Facebook was not directly involved in gun sales, it has served as a forum for gun sales to be negotiated, without people having to undergo background checks. The social network, with 1.6 billion monthly visitors, had become one of the world’s largest marketplaces for guns and was

The ban thrusts Facebook into the center of another major societal debate. Discussions over gun control have flared anew after the mass shootings last year in San Bernardino, Calif., and a community college in Oregon, among others. In January, President Obama gave a speech promising to tighten enforcement of laws governing unlicensed gun sales. In response, some individual sellers said they would turn to sites like Facebook, which allowed them to freely advertise guns for sale.

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Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive. In response to President Obama’s recent call to curb unlicensed gun sales, some sellers said they would turn to sites like Facebook. Credit Josh Edelson/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Facebook said it would rely on its vast network of users to report any violations of the new rules, and would remove any post that violated the policy. Beyond that, the company said it could ban users or severely limit the ways they post on Facebook, depending on the type and severity of past violations. If the company believed someone’s life was in danger, Facebook would work with law enforcement on the situation.

Facebook will also rely on user reports of private gun sales that occur between members via Facebook Messenger, the company’s private messaging service. Facebook does not scan the content of those messages.

“Over the last two years, more and more people have been using Facebook to discover products and to buy and sell things to one another,” Monika Bickert, Facebook’s head of product policy, said in a statement. “We are continuing to develop, test and launch new products to make this experience even better for people and are updating our regulated goods policies to reflect this evolution.”

New York’s attorney general, Eric T. Schneiderman, who has pressed for restrictions on illegal gun sales on Facebook and other sites, praised the company’s move.

“Today’s announcement is another positive step toward our shared goal of stopping illegal online gun sales once and for all,” he said in a statement on Friday.

Facebook plays host to scores of online groups that cater to gun enthusiasts, with members posting pictures and details about an individual gun, or a gun they might be looking to buy. Many of the groups are private, meaning that Facebook users may need to be approved by an administrator before they can see or write posts.

Unlike professional gun sellers, hobbyists who sell or trade a few guns a year are not typically required to be licensed by the federal government. Some, like Scott Schmoke of Florida, say that Facebook helps them sell just a handful of weapons a year. Mr. Schmoke said in an interview this month that he always insisted on meeting potential buyers face-to-face, to feel them out.

“I go to a secure location, and I say, ‘Can I see your driver’s license? Do you have a concealed-weapons permit?’ ” Mr. Schmoke said. If he gets a bad feeling, he does not sell, he said.

But as an unlicensed seller, Mr. Schmoke is under no obligation to perform any kind of background check. Federal authorities have expressed worries that the Internet has fueled the sale of guns to felons and others who might normally be blocked from buying firearms.

Facebook has taken some steps to regulate gun sales over the years. In 2014, it said it would limit gun sales on its site and on Instagram, including by shielding minors from Facebook pages that advertised guns for sale.

Kudo’s FB! My grandson is now in New Zealand. you know what he wrote me his first day there, “I’ll raise my children here in New Zealand.” …

EB

10 hours ago

Comparing the sale of guns to marijuana and other illegal drugs is asinine. The sale of guns over the Internet is not an unlawful act in and…

But since then, Facebook has been inching toward facilitating e-commerce transactions. In December, the company introduced a project that directs users to local businesses and services that are well-reviewed on Facebook. Facebook can also store users’ credit card information. And in recent months, Facebook made it possible to send peer-to-peer payments through Messenger.

Facebook’s progression toward on-site payments underscored the need to update the company’s content policy, a Facebook spokeswoman said.

The company has also been pushed by gun safety groups including Everytown for Gun Safety, an umbrella group that united the efforts of two separate organizations of mayors and mothers to promote gun safety. Shannon Watts, the founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, one of those two advocacy groups, said she met with senior Facebook officials repeatedly over the last two years.

Everytown for Gun Safety presented Facebook with research connecting unlicensed gun sales on the site to gun violence. For example, Ms. Watts said, in December 2014, an Ohio man, Brian Harleman, shot and wounded his ex-girlfriend and killed her 10-year-old daughter before killing himself. Although prohibited from buying firearms because of a felony conviction, he was able to buy the weapon in an unlicensed sale on Facebook.

“We were saying, ‘Please stop the unfettered access to guns on Facebook,’ ” Ms. Watts, a mother of five in Colorado, said in an interview.

Because of Facebook’s tremendous influence, she said, its decision to ban person-to-person sales of guns will have ripple effects on gun policy nationwide.

“What they’re doing is sending such an incredibly strong, sentinel signal to the world that America is working in the right direction on guns,” she said. “For them to take a stand and do the right thing gives cover to other businesses to do the right thing.”

Coming and going…….


A 79-year-old woman, Harlen Green, was found unresponsive in her Beverly Hills home after an unfortunate incident with a “personal massager.”

The woman was taken to a nearby hospital where she was revived and treated for her injuries. According to medical report, Green was unresponsive for nearly 5 minutes.

According to reports, Green’s daughter called 911 after she was unable to get a hold of her mother. Police were able to access the house where they found the elderly woman half dressed, with the device still inside her. Green had electrocution marks that ran up her stomach and down her arms. EMTs removed the bloody device and turned it over to investigators.

After recovering, Green told investigators that she likes to “give herself a little massage now and then” to ease her loneliness. “I haven’t had a man friend in my life for a really long time,” Green told police. “So I started to collect personal massagers. I have a Smoothie V, Pocket Rocket, 2 in One, at least 10 different ones so I don’t get bored. But the Hulk, it really rocked my world, and I guess I fell asleep. It gave me a real zap in the gap!”

Family members say they were shocked and appalled, as Harlen Green is known for her cookie baking for the neighborhood kids. Green’s son said he has confiscated all of her “massagers” and will keep a better eye on his mother.

Tell me about that “living wage” again?

Walmart closures a “double blow” for many frustrated residents


 

More than 100 Walmarts around the country shut their doors Thursday for good — many in small towns and rural areas with few other shopping options.

The retailer cites a long-term strategy shift and financial performance. Company shares are down 25 percent over the past 12 months, and the nationwide closureswill also impact thousands of employees, reports CBS News correspondent David Begnaud.

“It’s maddening because Walmart chose to do this,” said resident Retha Thompson, who feels betrayed by Walmart’s decision to leave Whitewright, Texas just 12 months after its grand opening. “They chose to come here and then when they put the other grocery store out of business, they want to close down and leave. I’m mad.”


 

She’s talking about “Pettit’s,” the mom and pop grocery that was a mainstay in this small town for nearly 60 years.

“Business – it just quit coming,” Larry Deeds, the store’s co-owner said.

Pettit’s closed about nine months after Walmart opened.

“It’s almost enough to bring a tear to your eye to see all these shelves empty,” said Will Pettit, who worked here since he was 16.

When Walmart moved in last year, Whitewright’s Mayor Allen West said a little competition from Walmart was a good thing. But now that it’s leaving, “it’s going to hurt the city financially, it’s going to hurt the citizens economically and not good for their mental status,” the mayor said.

Walmart is closing 154 stores in 27 states, many of them in small towns. In a statement to CBS News, Walmart said:

“The decision to close some of our stores was not easy and we share in the communities’ disappointment. We’re always searching for opportunities to serve more customers throughout the country — especially those in underserved communities. We’re now focused on where we can help impacted communities through our plans for charitable giving and expediting the process to work with potential buyers for these locations.”

“Communities are finally getting a look at not only the effects of when Walmart comes into town, but also when they leave,” said Bloomberg news reporter Shannon Pettypiece. “And I think that is a double blow for a lot people.”

But Deeds said Walmart doesn’t deserve all the blame.

“I lost some customers that had been coming to me for 20 or more years,” Deeds said.

And now that Walmart is closed, Retha Thompson will drive half an hour to the closest grocery store.

“It won’t be Walmart. I’m done with Walmart,” Thompson said.

Two of Thompson’s daughters-in-law were Walmart employees. They were offered either a severance package or the opportunity to relocate to work at another store, as goes for thousands of other employees across the country.

People demand more money, then get it, then complain when business cannot sustain those wages. What a bunch of dumasses

More Trump Haters keeping him popular…….

Last Wednesday, a dozen high school students from the Tulsa area were able to sneak a banner reading “Trump Makes America Hate Again” into the Mabee Arena where Trump was holding a campaign rally.

It amazes me that these Trump haters manage to keep his face on the front page every day, they are helping keep him popular and I am sure he is grateful.

Ex-Prosecutor diGenova: FBI ‘Would Go Ballistic’ If Hillary Not Indicted


The FBI and intelligence community “would go ballistic” if there’s no indictment in the case of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s use of her private email server to conduct government business, former federal prosecutor Joseph diGenova tells Newsmax TV.

In an interview with “Newsmax Now” hosts John Bachman and Miranda Khan on Friday, the former U.S. Attorney in the District of Columbia says the FBI will wrap up its probe of Clinton’s email use in the next two to three months.

“This case is about the future of enforcement of classified information,” diGenova declared. “[Clinton] has gotten a pass up to this point on any accusation being made public. But those days are going to be short lived.”

DiGenova says he expects a “compelling case with unassailable evidence” proving Clinton’s use of private unencrypted devices “compromised inner documents and transmissions” – some of which were “top secret.”

But it will be Obama administration-appointed Attorney General Loretta Lynch who will make the decision on whether or not to bring an indictment, he notes.

“And if the attorney general were to decide that there would not be an indictment, I can assure you that the FBI and the intelligence community would go ballistic,” he declared.

The only reason she would not prosecute, he asserts, “will be political.”

“I don’t believe she can do that under the law and if she does turn it down, [FBI Director James] Comey and the bureau and the director of Central Intelligence and [the National Security Agency] will do some incredible leaking that will burn your ears,” he said.

DiGenova insists the record already shows there was “unequivocally” a violation of federal law in Clinton and her staff’s use of private emails while she served as head of the State Department.

He added, however, that the intelligence community and FBI “are very concerned that there must be charges in this case because if not, they will never be able to prosecute any other federal employee for negligently handling classified information.”