Pennsylvania Firearm Owners Association
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  1. #1
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    Angry FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read



    We're between school/mass shootings right now, but let's not wait for the next one. Like any disaster, it helps to be prepared. If you sell firearms retail, or at a gun show, chances are excellent that you'll eventually get contacted by media for some lazy journalism to sensationalize and also spread incorrect facts about firearms laws, weapon types -- only to discover to your horror (and to your fellow gun-owners embarrassment) that the story was heavily tilted to make you look like a deathwish monster, that you sell murder weapons, and you're indifferent to human life.

    This type of narrative reporting won't stop if you continue to patronize media requests.

    I'm not saying that we should boycott FFLs who continue to do this (well, not yet anyway... more on that in a sec), but it pains us all every time we see an FFL answer a media request and then we see stories like this:




    These mass-shooting-driven journalists who hop on the gun control bandwagon in search of show pieces filled with false information and lots of emotion of being "horrified" is not productive to your business or to your customers.

    That is why we are all asking you to avoid all media requests from journalists. Even if they don't want to appear in person and just want to ask a few questions over the phone, or via email.


    TIPS: REFUSING A JOURNO'S REQUEST

    Nice way
    > Hi. You are probably contacting us because you need to write a slam-piece on firearms because some major shooting event happened that's captured widespread attention. Unfortunately {NAME OF YOUR GUN SHOP} doesn't participate in this kind of journalism, so we respectfully decline your requests.

    FOAD way
    > Hi. You probably hit us up because you're under pressure to get out a slam-piece on firearms for clicks. I'd be happy to entertain your questions---seven months from now after the hysteria is long past. That good? If not, then don't bother contacting {NAME OF YOUR GUN SHOP} ever again. Have a nice day! (put some emoji here)

    EXCEPTIONS:

    There's always exceptions to everything. Obvious ones:

    • Your business was involved in a crime incident (robbery, etc.)
    • Activists are trying to shut your business down using lawfare (like a muni finding out you bought a building with the intent to put a shop there, so they rush to block you using the zoning code)
    • You're pushing against proposed legislation


    The types of articles I am talking about are the clickbait pieces that happen after every mass shooting. You know the type--you've read them after every shooting incident. And they NEVER put the helpful gun store owner in a neutral light, ever, do they. Every article follows the same pattern---a journo with a very scant experience with firearms (or dad has a gun he shoots sometimes, therefore I am Firearms Expert™) needs to get a slam-piece out showing readers how horrifying firearms are. And specifically: how YOU are selling the scary shit that kills kids. That's what makes gun owners everywhere cringe. And then your name and your chopped-up quotes supporting gun control are all in the piece, to boot.

    If you happen to be in a metro area you might also get an on-site journalist or a reporter who drops-in unannounced. Treat this person just like you would someone who asks 5,000 questions and wants to dry fire all your merch but doesn't have any money to buy anything and has zero intention on purchasing anything. Don't even answer reporter's questions about permits, gun-safety or state laws. We have 1,000s of articles where journalists have clearly misstated state laws. Few will go back and correct the facts.


    BUT HOW WILL WE CORRECT THE FACTS IF WE DON'T TALK TO MEDIA?

    We are all gun owners here, FFL or no-FFL. You know we're being attacked constantly by activists who landed media jobs. We're never going to get a fair shake in media coverage, which is why we have our own communities and our own methods of communicating information. Gun owners are the most organized activists in America, and we're the only activist group who is immune from social media purgatory. Most Guntalk happens here, on gun fora like this one. Because we know if we relied on Silicon Valley we would be cremated there and crushed.

    First time shooters come in to your store for all sorts of reasons to purchase inventory---how many of them have said they came to your store because they read something about you in the Philadelphia Inquirer, or any other local paper? Never, right? You are never going to get put in a neutral light when the story is about something tragic that happened somewhere else.



    Honest journalism about firearms is never going to happen. Even though all the information and knowledge and facts about firearms is readily provided by the firearms community themselves, to other firearms owners. Somehow no journalist is able to Google to find this information and relay it correctly and honestly to their readers---isn't that strange?


    Journalists still believe that they can crush us with traditional digital and print media and they are fighting this war every. single. day.

    Don't shoot your own troops. Kick reporters out of your shops, tell them to hit the road at the gun show and don't answer their questions over phone, email or social media. They're going to write the story anyway without you.

    We can't continue to go through cycles like this with gun dealers being willing participants to misinformation about firearms. So don't do it.



    I honestly don't think anyone should patronize FFLs who are habitually stupid. We all avoid gun ranges that are unsafe and FFLs who screw us over. Why should we tolerate FFLs who continue to be duped over and over again by media?
    Last edited by ArcticSplash; August 9th, 2018 at 01:23 AM.
    FFL dealerships: Do NOT allow reporters in to your store

  2. #2
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    Apologies for making the font so huge in the OP. You know we have some FFLs who have really bad eyesight.


    For those of you who have "off the grid" FFLs who are not as up-to-date as we are with media/politics, feel free to print this thread out and slip it over the counter the next time you visit, or have a chat with your dealer sometime.
    Last edited by ArcticSplash; August 9th, 2018 at 01:25 AM.
    FFL dealerships: Do NOT allow reporters in to your store

  3. #3
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    I think when we eventually go through the next cycle of this crap, if any PA FFLs fall into this trap yet again, some of us should do an intervention.

    As in pick up the phone and talk to the dealer directly, and ask them what happened and why they thought entertaining a media request was a good idea.

    If that doesn't work... you know what comes next: don't shop there.
    FFL dealerships: Do NOT allow reporters in to your store

  4. #4
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    Well stated. Thank you.

    I had a facebook post "stolen," taken out of context, and given to The Morning Call Newspaper a few years ago, by a spy/plant from a windmill company trying to put windmills in Carbon County. They were trying to make the local folks out to look like homicidal maniacs by claiming that a comment I made about the shooting that occurred at the Ross township building in Monroe county was going to happen there.
    I did open carry when I was helping to put chairs away after a few of the zoning board meetings.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    Best advice from an fellow FFL quoted from a outside forum-

    Best Stuff (simplified):
    -If a reporter calls make an appointment DO NOT answer questions on the spot or over the phone. Even asking for 10 min can give you time to check your facts and keep yourself from misrepresenting your own viewpoint
    -If you can't get a face to face (due to distance or whatever) do the interview over email and read everything 2 times
    -If something happens that MIGHT be newsworthy; put out your own press release and send it to the news outlet
    -Never try to be clever, that's when mistakes happen: be direct and answer every question EVEN if you feel it is a trap. At that point redirect to the positive and the message you want.
    -"Befriend" a reporter. Become their go to source and they will not want to piss on you (make them need you)
    -Watch interviews with other people who are in our industry and learn from them
    -A reporter will only use about 1% of what you say on camera, always try to provide them with printed notes

    Stuff I have learned:
    -Reporting is a job. A reporter will not Chase around the best lead, only the first. So if they show up on your doorstep tell them you need 10 min and they will wait
    -Learn who the newsroom managers (producers) are at the tv stations. If you have something to say; say it to them first. They assigned the stories
    -Bad press comes from you not the reporter. If the reporter is out to get you they will not use anything good you say. If you do not say anything "not good" they will not go for you but may go for your competition
    insist to have final say before it gets published to fix shit- if they don't don't give the ok.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    That is why we are all asking you to avoid all media requests from journalists.

    Obviously, there are dumbasses out there who can be taken during an interview, but I have been interviewed multiple times by both print and TV news and the final edited piece was always neutral to positive. Why is that? Because I''m not a dumbass. All questions are given to me days prior to the interview and I tell them the first question not on that list is the end of the interview, with exceptions for follow up questions. Giving interviews is a way for us to inform the uninformed about the legality of firearms. By not granting interviews, you are allowing the anti-gun zealots to control the press.

    Here are a few examples:

    http://www.post-gazette.com/sports/o...s/201807090010

    https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2015...dents-on-edge/

    https://observer-reporter.com/news/l...4f09d9ebf.html

    I recently completed a two-day interview with the Washington Post, like previous times, they submitted all questions in advance and never deviated once from those questions. While I haven't seen the piece, yet, I'm confident it will be a neutral story.

    Jody Salerno, Owner of Personal Safety Alliance, is a friend of mine who always gives great pro-gun interviews in SW PA. You can find dozens of her interviews online where she ALWAYS comes out on top.

    By suggesting ALL FFLs should immediately end interviews or you would boycott them is shortsighted and only empowers the anti-gun fascist who will be the only voice heard on the news.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    FFL dealerships: Do NOT allow reporters in to your store

  8. #8
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    FFL dealerships: Do NOT allow reporters in to your store

  9. #9
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    Quote Originally Posted by Rosco the Iroc View Post
    Best advice from an fellow FFL quoted from a outside forum-

    -Bad press comes from you not the reporter. If the reporter is out to get you they will not use anything good you say. If you do not say anything "not good" they will not go for you but may go for your competition

    insist to have final say before it gets published to fix shit- if they don't don't give the ok.
    This is true. Back during the alar scare (chemical used on apples) I knew a guy who was there when none other than 60 Minutes was at his place of work (apple producer in Adams county) for an interview. When the subject of the interview refused to get upset, answered questions calmly and did not rise to bait questions, they abruptly quit recording and concluded the interview with a comment to the effect 'There is no news here!'
    Illegitimus non carborundum est

  10. #10
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    Default Re: FFL? Do you sell firearms? Must Read

    I am a bit uncomfortable with anyone telling me what to do with my business. If I wanna talk to the press, I will do so on my terms with whom I see fit.
    All that is needed for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing.

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