Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Groupon Halts Gun-Related Deals After Newtown Shooting

Collective couponing company Groupon is dipping its toes into the gun debate this week with a promise to halt all gun-related coupon deals.

The company’s decision became apparent after Texas gun shop owner Michael Cargill complained publicly that his coupon deal with Groupon had been cancelled. In response, a Groupon representative confirmed that it had put all such deals, across the country, on “hiatus” while it “review[s] internal standards”:

“All scheduled and current gun-related deals featured on Groupon North America, including shooting ranges, conceal-and-carry and clay shooting, have been placed on hiatus while we review internal standards that shape the deal inventory we feature,” said Groupon spokeswoman Julie Mossler in an emailed statement. “The category is under review following recent consumer and merchant feedback.”

In the wake of the horrific shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, gun safety advocates called on the company to stop offering gun-related deals. The company has not publicly acknowledged the campaign, though it seems as though the complaints were received.

Other companies have similarly disassociated with guns in response to Newtown. Dick’s Sporting Goods and Walmart both temporarily pulled from their shelves the type of gun used in the shooting. Other companies — and the city of Chicago — have divested from gun manufacturers.

Cargill is calling on his customers, and other people who oppose gun regulations, to boycott Groupon.

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