I’m Boycotting GunBroker

GunBroker has been a useful site. Without it I wouldn’t have my SPAS-12 and accompanying choke tubes. But it is time for me to say farewell to it. As it turns out GunBroker prohibits users from using one of the best tools available for protecting free speech online: Tor:

GunBroker.com is now detecting if users are connecting to them through Virtual Private Networks (VPN), proxy servers or Tor. Users who are detected using these services are being given one warning to stop using these to access the site or have their account terminated.

If your site doesn’t allow users to access it via Tor then you aren’t getting any of my money and I will do what I can to convince other people not to give you money. Protecting free speech online is just as serious as protecting the right to keep and bear arms in my book.

10 thoughts on “I’m Boycotting GunBroker”

  1. Maybe the VPN and account termination things are new, but I quit using them back in 2007 after they locked my account for accessing it via Tor. Screw ’em!

    1. Wow. I didn’t know this practice had gone back so far. I’d have boycotted them long ago if I had known that.

  2. I don’t understand why Gunbroker has a problem with this. Many firearms enthusiasts are very security minded, and there is nothing wrong with that.

    1. I don’t understand it either. Using Tor to access GunBroker doesn’t make unlawful purchasing of firearms any easier since you still need to have the gun transferred through an FFL. My guess is the staff at GunBroker has either bought the FUD spread about Tor by many law enforcement agencies (that only evil people use to Tor) or they want to make it appear as though they’re doing everything in their power to prevent unlawful transfers on their website.

  3. Well we are operating a new competitor to gunbroker, and we are happy to accommodate people’s security concerns. There isn’t really a legitimate security concern from our standpoint to using proxies.

  4. The irony about the government trying to make TOR look evil is that the State Department is one of the major funding sources for the project. And as far as VPNs go there are many many reasons to use one that are legitimate to only a handful of illegitimate uses none of which help you purchase a gun since the transaction goes through the FFL in your area.

  5. Something that was brought up in the comments section of TFB is that there might have been issues regarding potential fluff bidding by unscrupulous sellers artificially increasing the bids on their products. Which has been a concern of many who use the service, although it would not really help prevent this given that a change of IP and location is quite easily accomplished.

    1. That is ironic coming from the company that has the infamous 15 minute rule that seems custom designed to allow a seller’s cronies to bump up the price at the last moment.

      IP bans aren’t even good ideas in general because most people don’t have a static IP address nor are they generally limited to one connection (they usually have a home connection and the data plan on their phones, both of which usually use dynamic IP assignments, at the minimum).

  6. When I asked why, they claimed it was to “prevent fraud”. I called BS and went elsewhere. Then again, I’m an @$$hole like that.

  7. GB is useless along with their Customer Service. Their verification process is worthless and misleading. I will never use or recommend them on that basis alone. This just proves how bad they really are….

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