I’ve long been a big fan of Amazon. I have a Prime membership that I use all the time, and over the years I’ve spent a lot of money on Amazon. While I’ve always known that Amazon didn’t allow firearms to be sold or advertised on their platform, what I didn’t know until recently is the sheer number of items they prohibit, and the seemingly hypocritical way in which they enforce their restricted product policies.
Boxer Tactical Omni Sling
Boxer Tactical currently sells their products exclusively through Amazon, and they do this for a few reasons. First, Amazon does a pretty good job of order fulfillment from the customer’s standpoint. They are, at least in my opinion, one of the best in that department, and they should be, considering that Amazon is the world’s largest online retailer. Second, by using Amazon to take orders, process payments and ship, it allows Boxer Tactical to focus on what they do best: make gear.
On March 11, Amazon contacted Boxer Tactical stating that their Omni Sling was removed from the Amazon catalog because it had been identified as a “single point sling.”Â If you are like me, and you regularly shop on Amazon, you might be surprised to hear that single point slings, along with aÂ slew of other weapon related products, are prohibited on Amazon. The list of prohibited items includes things like magazines, anything to do with “assault weapons” both parts and accessories, barrels, quad rails and rail covers just to name a few.
Amazon’s removal of the Omni Sling raises a few problems.
The first problem with Amazon’s claim is the most obvious – the Boxer Tactical Omni Sling is not a single point, it’s a 2 point sling, which is allowed by Amazon (go figure). No big deal right? I mean, we shouldn’t expect the people at Amazon who enforce these policies to know the difference between a single and a 2 point sling (even though it clearly stated “2 Point Sling” in the Omni product description), so Billy set out to correct their error. However, this led to an even bigger problem that perhaps you’ve already spotted.
The bigger problem is that Amazon, not independent sellers, is selling items from their own restricted list. We’re not talking independent companies like Boxer Tactical, we’re talking Amazon buying product on the open market, warehousing those items and selling them. For example (click for a larger version):
In the screenshots above, you see where it says “ships from and sold by Amazon.com?” That’s Amazon directly violating their own policies, and you can find many more examples with a quick search.
Billy went back and forth with Amazon but never got his sling reinstated. When Billy pointed out the error of their judgement, Amazon changed their reasoning from “it’s a single point sling” to “it’s tactical.” When Billy pointed out their hypocrisy as discussed above, he was ignored.
So why was Boxer Tactical seemingly singled out? It’s hard to say, but interested parties can view a PDF of the entire exchange here (contact info redacted).
While I do not agree with Amazon’s anti-gun choices, they are free to restrict whatever products they choose. I’m not suggesting they shouldn’t be allowed to, nor am I suggesting that we start a boycott of Amazon, but I would like to see Amazon more clearly and fairly enforce their policies, as well as abide by their own rules. Those of you who sell on Amazon, take notice.