Facebook to regulate visibility of gun ads to minors

Facebook have announced policy changes which will restrict advertising visibility pertaining to gun accessories and minors. 

The changes will come into place this week, on June 21st, when age restrictions will be imposed on who can view such adverts. Guns are currently not allowed to be advertised on the site, but accessories, such as holsters, scopes, magazines and associated equipment are all permitted.

The move comes as part of an ongoing debate in America concerning gun control. A rise in mass shootings, particularly those which have occurred in schools and at public events has led to heated and impassioned examination of the existing situation.

The new regulations, intended to “restrict their audiences to at least 18 years of age or over,” are as follows.

As Andrew Liptak of The Verge points out, ‘Limiting the ads to users who are likely out of high school feels as though it’s an incremental step, but one that could cut down on the visibility of the items and accessories that make guns seem cooler.’

Back in March of this year, YouTube banned gun demonstration videos, “YouTube will ban videos that promote or link to websites selling firearms and accessories, including bump stocks, which allow a semi-automatic rifle to fire faster,” reported Bloomberg, “Additionally, YouTube said it will prohibit videos with instructions on how to assemble firearms. The video site, owned by Alphabet Inc.’s Google, has faced intense criticism for hosting videos about guns, bombs and other deadly weapons.”

In 2016 Facebook banned the private sale of guns on the website.