UPDATE: Less than 72 hours after gun rights activists outmaneuvered Michael Bloomberg’s launch of a $50 million “Everytown for Gun Safety” effort by grabbing Facebook presence with that title, the page was taken down sometime late Friday or early Saturday and now people will find what appears to be a Bloomberg site, but with angry comments posted by pro-gunners.
But now there is some mystery and a lot of questions about that Facebook site as well. Blogger Bob Owens is now writing that the Bloomberg site may be a parody, and then again, maybe not, and that this is the real Bloomberg/Demand Action Facebook page that is linked to the main "Everytown" website. Examiner will update as information becomes available.
But Facebook did not pull the original pro-gun page, according to Eric Reed, one of those responsible for launching the pro-gun grassroots effort to grab the “Everytown” presence on the social media site. Late Saturday evening, Reed told Examiner via telephone that “The page was not yanked by Facebook, it was pulled on our end.”
Reed said he was still trying to get information on exactly what led to the decision to take down the page. A commercial pilot, he was in the air most of Saturday and was trying to catch-up on all of the details. However, he indicated that there had apparently been some kind of legal threat, but because of the late hour, he was having difficulty gathering information. The decision apparently only involved the main pro-gun “Everytown” page, not the scores of off-shoots.
“There are so many ‘Everytown’ pages that have already been created,” he said. “They’re going to have a time (getting them all).”
Only a few comments had been posted by Saturday evening on the alleged new "Everytown" page, which now appears to be bogus, despite its appearance of reality. One man wrote, “I don’t support you nor do my fellow brothers and sisters in law enforcement. I am proud whenever a citizen tells me they legally carry.”
Another wrote, “You saw a real grassroots movement in our seizure of the fb name. Yes you got it back as you have the Trademark, but be aware, your purpose of trying to push for gun control under a misguided version of safety will not work. Spend your millions Bloomie, you can't buy a real grassroots movement.”
The pro-gun page, initially launched Wednesday within hours of Bloomberg’s high-profile announcement, had garnered some 20,000 “likes.” Saturday evening, there was still lots of activity on the state-level off-shoots.
Reed gave the impression that this issue is not entirely settled. He told this column that the pro-gun “Everytown” Facebook page is “temporarily on hiatus.” It is not clear who is responsible for the other Facebook "Everytown" effort.
“They say their $50 million effort is grassroots,” he said. “They have no idea what grassroots is. They will never, ever stop the grassroots movement. Wherever Bloomberg is, whatever mission or task he is taking on, I will be there.”
“I smacked a hornet’s nest,” Reed acknowledged. “I’d do it again in a heartbeat.”