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YouTube Plans to Shut Down Gun Instructional Videos

Cody Wilson fears that major private institutions are trying to make gunmakers non-persons.

YouTube announced this week that it will soon begin taking down videos that violate its new policies on gun-related content. It will bar not just explicit sales of certain weapons but also videos that present "instructions on manufacturing a firearm, ammunition, high capacity magazine, homemade silencers/suppressors, or certain firearms accessories such as those listed above. This also includes instructions on how to convert a firearm to automatic or simulated automatic firing capabilities."

Defense DistributedDefense Distributed

Vice Motherboard reports that enforcement of the new policies will likely start next month. One gun-related channel, Spike's Tactical, claimed in the wake of that news that YouTube had already suspended it, though I see the channel still there today.

Cody Wilson, inventor of the first 3D-printed plastic handgun, says he's awaiting actual action on YouTube's part before considering his next move. "When they start taking shit down is when I want to get loud," he said in a phone interview today. His channel is still up and running.

He's had videos related to his gunmaking taken down before. But in the past, he says, YouTube has generally couched its complaints about gun-related content in terms of copyright (say, for music in the background) or the danger that certain age groups will see the material.

Wilson fears that in the current climate YouTube will be as broad as possible in what it takes down, "like if you show a magazine and a gun this is tantamount to demonstrating to someone how to assemble" a weapon. He has announced on Twitter that he will not help YouTube by taking anything down himself.

Others in the gun community are worried about what alternative places could host their videos if and when they are actually driven from YouTube. "People are emailing me, asking me if I'll be the guy" to figure out a new video solution, Wilson says. "But I have no idea. It's too expensive to do. I don't know if there can be a YouTube alternative in the way we understand YouTube now."

Wilson does mention one "marketable, hilarious answer" to the "what now?" question: Pornhub. Indeed, the InRangeTV channel has already told NPR that it is taking that tack. (Check it out yourself. A search on the term "guns" brought up at least one of their videos in the top picks, among lots of more conventional pornography involving guns in some manner.)

Wilson in our interview this morning also cited Citigroup's announcement yesterday that it

will require new retail sector clients or partners to adhere to these best practices: (1) they don't sell firearms to someone who hasn't passed a background check, (2) they restrict the sale of firearms for individuals under 21 years of age, and (3) they don't sell bump stocks or high-capacity magazines. This policy will apply across the firm, including to small business, commercial and institutional clients, as well as credit card partners, whether co-brand or private label. It doesn't impact the ability of consumers to use their Citi cards at merchants of their choice.

To Wilson, both moves are disturbing signs that the culture at large, not necessarily the state per se, is closing in on him and his interests. "This is really happening now. YouTube, Google, banks....The libertarian response is just that these are all private companies, so....? And that's true. But if you are no longer a person" to such leading institutions in marketing, commerce, and communication, "then what [options are] there?"

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    If my child sees any movie clips or music videos on YouTube that show a firearm in any way, I will certainly pitch the biggest fit you've ever seen. And subscribe to my channel to see it!

  • Agammamon||

    YouTube Plans to Shut Down . . .

    Hey everybody, why don't you check out 'Floatplane Club' from Linus Tech Tips. If you can find the freaking page. Christ.

  • Old Mexican - Mostly Harmless||

    Yeah. I like that page.

  • ||

    So they won't be showing anything produced by Hollywood for example. Maybe the 'entertainment' industry in general should try this approach and make no movies with guns in them, unless the gun carriers are LOE or military types.

    Maybe there could be a good consequence in such a move. After all there may be unsafe 'education out there on YouTube.

    I do not own a firearm, as yet, but in the last week I did join the NRA; it seemed to be the minimum I could do to support the Constitution. You can join for as little as $28 per year and you get a gift, a year's free subscription to a magazine, plus no cost firearm insurance.

    Any the the NRA web site displays locations for approved training in your vicinity. After all the NRA was created initially, way back when, to train the military of the day because they couldn't shoot for shit.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    "will require new retail sector clients or partners to adhere to these best practices: (1) they don't sell firearms to someone who hasn't passed a background check, (2) they restrict the sale of firearms for individuals under 21 years of age, and (3) they don't sell bump stocks or high-capacity magazines. This policy will apply across the firm, including to small business, commercial and institutional clients, as well as credit card partners, whether co-brand or private label. It doesn't impact the ability of consumers to use their Citi cards at merchants of their choice.""

    Seems like the last sentence ignores the previous sentences.

  • Don't look at me.||

    It doesn't impact the ability of consumers to use their Citi cards at merchants of their choice.""

    Yet.

  • LaudanumMilkshake||

    F*** Citi, zeroed my balance and calling in to cancel on Monday. I'll explain they can get my business back when they revoke the policy, apologize and make a hefty donation to a real 2A group like GOA (NRA doesn't cut it). I know it doesn't mean anything to them, but I'm pissed.

    Pornhub and Full30 for my vids.

  • GILMORE™||

    "YouTube Plans to Shut Down Gun Instructional Videos"

    You are confusing their headline spin for their actual policy

    Anyone who has looked at how they implement their content-restrictions recognizes the difference.

    just as wilson does

    "Wilson fears that in the current climate YouTube will be as broad as possible in what it takes down, "like if you show a magazine and a gun this is tantamount to demonstrating to someone how to assemble" a weapon."

    They will ban any video that has ever shown a single "basic field strip" of a firearm. Which is something every single firearms channel (including the biggest ones like Hickock45) do routinely.

    In addition, this is just one of many criteria they're claiming to be part of their reason for bans. They also added:

    - any videos that "promote or links to websites selling firearms"

    *many of the biggest gun channels have their ammo sponsored, which they mention.

    - anything that features "explosive devices"

    *many of the most-popular 'gun entertainment' channels like FPS Russia, Demolition Ranch, etc. regularly shoot exploding targets.

    Why, its almost like they created their "reasons" for bans after looking at all the channels and trying to create the most-reasonable-sounding critera which coincidentall covered them all

    Be honest and stop treating their obvious bullshit at face-value

  • GILMORE™||

    Meanwhile, I'm sure Youtube will have no problem taking money from Hollywood to promote trailers like this at every kid who comes to watch their new "gun free" content.

  • ||

    Be honest and stop treating their obvious bullshit at face-value

    More pointedly in line with this;

    "YouTube Plans to Shut Down Gun Instructional Videos Except Those Sanctioned By The State"

    You better believe that when Sheriff Fucktard and Chief Numbnuts go on camera visibly armed to the teeth to issue unequivocal and unfettered threats, they are going to get their free speech and free arms rights duly respected.

  • GILMORE™||

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    Good. The tide is finally turning against the NRA and the politicians it controls through its vast financial resources.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    It took a profit-motivated mega-corporation to finally Make America Woke Again.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    It took mega-corporations turned into profit ignoring SJW zombie corps.

  • Old Mexican - Mostly Harmless||

    Re: Open... whatever,

    The tide is finally turning against the NRA and the politicians it controls through its vast financial resources.


    What are you talking about? What "vast financial resources"? The power of the NRA is strictly political, not financial. People DO care about their right to own guns.

  • BigT||

    Adjust your sarc meter.

  • IceTrey||

    The NRA is not top 50 for donations.

  • Roy Batty||

    You leftists can't disarm the american people. And we know your NRA boogeyman is a red herring. Hope to see you on the front-lines going door-to-door when your wet dream mandatory buyback goes into effect.

  • Don't look at me.||

    If there is demand for these videos, a market will be created for them. AFAIK, YouTube doesn't carry porn, but there seems to be plenty of that around.

  • libertynugget||

    ...introducing hammer to the head of the nail.

  • Get To Da Chippah||

    www.full30.com seems to be a new repository for firearm-related info.

  • Cy||

    Makes it even easier for a 'list' to be compiled if all they need to do is pull IP's and cross reference with a few other 'lists.' I think it's great the site exists. But, from a big brother stand point, it's almost a dream come true.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    It's almost as if New Media is acting like... Old Media.

  • Jerryskids||

    "Unperson". The term is unperson when you're disappeared,

  • Bubba Jones||

    Reddit has banned any forum that facilitates transactions in guns. /r/gundeals was among the first to go.

    I wonder if PornHub is considering a spinoff. Call it "VideoHub."

  • Cy||

    That would be AWESOME!

  • IceTrey||

    Are they going to take off all the sword and knife making channels?

  • Don't look at me.||

    What about the tide pod eating channels? Asking for a friend.

  • DJK||

    Let's see. Minimum estimate of 100 million gun owners in the country. Might be as high as 200 million. NRA membership increasing rapidly. Seems like people really do care about gun rights. Might be a good opportunity for a startup to step in and provide access to such videos. The potential market is enormous. Anyone know a VC who's not anti-gun?

  • Ken Shultz||

    It isn't just the instructional videos. YouTube's new policy has them taking down any video mentioning a retailer that sells guns or gun accessories.

    That's bullshit.

    Some of the most popular gun channels use gun shops as sponsors, so they can borrow guns for review and testing--without having to depend on kissing the ass of the gun manufacturers like all the magazines do.

    One of the gun channels I check out a lot are, of course, hickok45, which has a big enough viewership that they can split off on their own. That guy is a retired sheriff. He comes across like the favorite uncle you never had. He's sponsored by a gun shop for that reason. Won't take any money directly from the manufacturers so he can say what he wants about their products.

    I also check out nutnfancy. i believe that guy was an Air Force colonel. Flew A-10s in combat or some such. Again, he comes across . . . like the cocky uncle maybe you're glad you don't have. NFL quarterbacks, brain surgeons, and fighter pilots are supposed to be cocky as all get out, though, amirite?

    His videos are fun and informative. He's sponsored by his local gun shop so he can get guns to review and he often craps all over gun and models that he doesn't like.

    Those guys are about as dangerous as . . . well, there isn't anything dangerous about them.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Being a libertarian is often about standing up for the rights of people you don't like because you're standing up for thir rights. If and when the government comes to break up Google, I'll stand up for Google's rights--but it won't be because I like them.

    Google, you suck.

  • Headache||

    Google owns YouTube.

  • Ken Shultz||

    YouTube, Waymo, Alphabet, . . .

    When I say "Google" everybody knows who I'm talking about, right?

    When I ask the receptionist for a box of Kleenex in the conference room, I don't expect her to run to the store because the only brand we have in the stockroom is made by somebody else.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Flew A-10s in combat or some such.

    I thought C130s, but hey... I won't nitpick.

    like the cocky uncle maybe you're glad you don't have.

    He's alright. I think his reviews are honest. I don't watch his channel much, though.

  • GILMORE™||

    ""i believe that guy was an Air Force colonel. Flew A-10s in combat """

    No, he flew a refueling tanker. he provided a-10s (and others) gas.

    as i mentioned above: youtube obviously went through all the top gun-channels, and carefully picked "rational sounding criteria" which would ensnare them all.

    the 'assembly', 'marketing/selling', 'explosives' stuff was solely to create a venn-diagram which netted 99% of the channels. anyone left over will be too-small to gain any attention if they complain, and will be chucked out w/ the rest.

    Reason could have clarified this if they had any interest in opposing what YT is doing. they apparently don't.

  • jelabarre||

    Others in the gun community are worried about what alternative places could host their videos if and when they are actually driven from YouTube. "People are emailing me, asking me if I'll be the guy" to figure out a new video solution, Wilson says. "But I have no idea. It's too expensive to do. I don't know if there can be a YouTube alternative in the way we understand YouTube now."

    There's always NicoNico. Added benefit by being outside of the USA.

  • Cy||

    Snowden mentioned that the bulk of domestic information collection by the deep state was "legal" because they'd route 1' and 0's out of the country therefore making them open season for collection.

  • XM||

    Youtube had issues with demonenitizing users for random reasons. I think an alternative could potentially attract some content creators, especially if they facilitate moving or copying YT videos to their platform.

    Youtube original content (vlogs and prank channels) are nothing to write home about. There's really no reason why videos on makeup tutorial or skate board stunts can't thrive on another site.

  • Emotional Opposition Animal||

    "This is really happening now. YouTube, Google, banks....The libertarian response is just that these are all private companies, so....? And that's true.

    That's not the libertarian response, or at least shouldn't be. Whether a company has serious competition is more important than whether it's private. Bitchute, Vimeo, and Minds are all well and good but they are not serious competition to the Google-funded YouTube behemoth. YouTube's fiat can shut down speech as thoroughly as any government edict.

    Of course this could all be solved without regulation, by a simple rule that if a company gains control of 2/3 of its industry, it has to split in half.

  • GILMORE™||

    "" this could all be solved without regulation, by a simple rule""

    ...

    a rule? and who enforces this rule, exactly?

    what you're saying is this could be solved WITH regulation.

    which is fine, just admit what you're saying. you can't have propose arbitrary market-controlling rules and then pretend you're against 'regulation'

  • TLBD||

    The problem is that there is a political party that has figured out that there are some rights that they can't oppress, so they get their friends running corporations to do it for them. They scratch each others backs. This is what we call fascism.

    There is obviously coercion in the market that is hard to pinpoint, but it is there, as we can see few if any viable alternatives and/or competition that should spring forth organically in the market. So the question from a libertarian perspective becomes do we respect the rights of the coercer/conspirator more than the rights of the average citizen?

    Libertarians tend to think of things in black and white, while this is pretty grey. We do not do well in grey areas, which is why we are disregarded (think foreign policy). The stance that "Google is a private company they can do what they want" sounds great, and it is the way it should be, but it is not the way it is. They are tied into government, as is Amazon and pretty much every other major corporation, and I personally believe they should have to respect our rights the same as government the second they get into bed with government.

  • Cy||

    +1 The government contracting out it's tyranny under the guise of "private corporation" seems to be a huge blind spot for many people.

  • GILMORE™||

    ""The stance that "Google is a private company they can do what they want" sounds great, and it is the way it should be, but it is not the way it is.

    That's nice, but the 'stance' you describe has nothing to do with what i said.

    I was replying to someone saying =

    "" this could all be solved without regulation, by a simple rule that if a company gains control of 2/3 of its industry, it has to split in half.""

    That is an internally-contradictory statement. 'a simple rule' that forces arbitrary constraints on a market IS a regulation.

    I don't care if a person takes X position OR Y position in an argument. What i object to is pretending you're saying X while also simultaneously arguing Y.

    As for my own POV, i haven't really advanced one re: Google at all. so i don't know what you're trying to convince me of, or why.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Gadzooks! A valuable insight. Artificial persons are into currish fawning in the lap of looterdom. The State need only threaten their quarterly earnings. The rest of us they threaten with death or gaol.

  • LarryA||

    Bitchute, Vimeo, and Minds are all well and good but they are not serious competition to the Google-funded YouTube behemoth.

    If YouTube makes 100 million gun-owners angry, the other three could inherit a lot of traffic.

    It's happened before. Anti-gun folks get caught up in the msm echo chamber and think they're on a roll.

    Last time, the NRA went from 3.5 million to 5 million. There are now 16.3 million people with carry licenses, and expanding. There are half-again as many no-license-required states than there are restricted license states. School faculty carry is spreading like wildfire.

    Reality is a bitch.

  • Ron||

    I've used the internet to see how to repair restore older weapons. Denying people the ability to do such actually makes some weapons more dangerous due to incorrectly informed repairs

  • IceTrey||

    I just bought Guntube.com.

  • SusanM||

    Enjoy it while it lasts - bullet racing

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zbtyaKAMDdk

  • Nyarlarrythotep||

    Misleading headline. "Gun-instructional videos" conveys that they educate viewers on how to use firearms. Instead these are apparently videso about making or modifying guns. NOTE: I'm not saying that I think those videos should be fair game for suppression.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    No, it's an accurate headline concerning a misleadingly described policy. Given the way their current, innocently phrased policies are implemented, the headline is, if anything, understating what they're going to do. It will be everything gun related.

  • Jobur27||

    How about
    https://d.tube/

  • AlgerHiss||

    Any content that praises Pol Pot, Karl Marx and Gus Hall will of course be proffered up as must-see and quite valuable.

    Same for any content that is non-hetero sexual stuff: That content is never to be questioned or doubted or heaven forbid, deleted.

    The dream content would be tranny, vegan communists.

  • Brett Bellmore||

    It's not "the culture at large" doing this. If it were they'd have the votes to prevail in elections.

    It's the 'elites' who have taken control of the commanding heights of cultural transmission. Their culture isn't the culture 'at large'. Yet.

    But it will be, eventually, if they can't be stopped. We need our own institutions, our own 'Facebooks' and 'Youtubes'. Our own search engines and schools. Even our won DNS systems. We have to take from them the power to lock us out.

    This is a war of cultural genocide, and so far, only their side is fighting it. That changes, NOW, or we lose.

  • contraryjim||

    An independent internet funded by it's subscribers...Content supported by subscribers. NO gov allowed

  • Hank Phillips||

    First Teedy Rosenfeld with his "race suicide" support for collectivist eugenics and Comstock laws, now Frett with the same thing in a different package. Le plus ça change...

  • Ken Shultz||

    Incidentally, PayPal pisses me off, too. If you buy a gun or a gun accessory with your PayPal account, my understanding is that they will suspend your account indefinitely.

    It's especially troubling IF IF IF these companies are colluding on gun control explicitly.

    If and when PayPal, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, et. al. decide they're coming after our gun rights, we can certainly criticize them for it--even if they're private entities.

    Meanwhile, if they're colluding against gun owners, regardless of whether I agree with the law as presently constituted, that may constitute anti-competitive behavior. If and when such anti-competitive behavior significantly reduces the ability of people to exercise their rights, even my libertarian ass might start to question whether the government needs to step in and protect our rights from such collusion.

  • Devastator||

    That's their right as a private business. Just find an alternative, there are a bazillion.

  • Hank Phillips||

    At least one PayPal executive shows up at every FATF, AML, TF, CFT, DNFBP, IRS-CID, INL, ICRG, GIABA, GAFISUD, FSRB, FIU, FinCEN, EAG convention. They may be keeping an eye on the juggernaut rather than colluding, but they are right there where financial panics originate.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Imagine Facebook says to Twitter, "Don't worry about cracking down on facilitating gun sales, Facebook. We'll do the same thing, too--we won't take your business away on that". It's collusion! Call it what it is even if you approve of it. I don't have to pretend that rapists aren't rapists in order to stand up for their Fifth Amendment rights, and there's no reason why I should have to pretend these companies aren't colluding--if that's what they're doing--certainly not just because I don't want the government to interfere.

    That being said, if the only legitimate function of government is to protect our rights, there's an argument to make that the government could have role here--if someone is significantly working to violate our right to make choices for ourselves. We don't complain about the government protecting the rights of rape victims--just because the rapists are in the private sector--and if these companies start violating our rights, there's a libertarian argument to make that the government has a legitimate role in protecting our rights from them, too.

  • Craig Johnston||

    Except they haven't violated any of our rights by choosing to drop gun-related channels. I think they are wrong, but I don't think the government should force them to carry gun-related content any more than the government should force them to carry vegan transsexual content.

    I wonder, though, at what point they become responsible for the content they do allow. It's one thing to provide a platform and be shielded from liability about the things people post there; it's an entirely different thing to say, we arbitrarily filter gun-related (and other) content but shouldn't be liable for the content we choose to allow.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    Just start your video by praising the Macabbes and post on Jew Tube.

  • jdgalt1||

    Another YT alternative to check out is bitchute.com.

  • jdgalt1||

    Libertarians should not just insist that any company policy is automatically OK. They should ask questions about why there is so little competition in the industry involved (in this case banking) that a company can have outrageous policies and yet stay in business. Usually the answer is overregulation, and we should fight the situation on that level. But in the meantime, let's think about how to work around it. There must be some way to create "the Uber of banking" without running afoul of money laundering laws.

  • Hank Phillips||

    The Crypt, as designed by Neil Stephenson.

  • Devastator||

    Sounds like a business opportunity to me. Fuck the people who think they can censor the second amendment.

  • Brandybuck||

    All those Fallout 4 videos explaining how to mod your 10mm pistol... Anyone going to report them?

  • garland823||

    You absolutely should do this. Report every video game video with gun content, every movie trailer, music video, documentary, everything. The best way to get rid of a bad law is enforce it totally. They won't be able to keep up with the volume of complaints.

  • contraryjim||

    What is needed is a internet independent of government...subscribed to by it's users...it will need to be innovative to stay ahead of gov hackers.

  • Hank Phillips||

    See? Program algos to generate virtual sockpuppets that report vids as shocking or creepy and the spineless censor themselves.

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