Pay Pal’s Gun Policies

PayPal has long had a problem with people using their service to buy guns, or even gun related parts or items.  I avoid using PayPal as much as possible, which ends up being that I only have to use it (because I want something, and that’s all they take) once or twice a year.  PayPal, even aside from the gun issue, is pure unadulterated evil.  See here.

Kevin has quite the story about how PayPal treats gun owners, and publishes their customer service number for people to complain about their policy.  Personally, I just wouldn’t use it.  The sad part is, there aren’t a lot of services out there which are a reasonable substitute for what PayPal offers.

22 thoughts on “Pay Pal’s Gun Policies”

  1. VSSA is in the process of setting up online memberships. There is another pro-gun organization in Virginia that uses PayPal for this purpose but for a number of reasons VSSA did not want to go that route. While it has taken us longer to set up our process, I think we made the right decision to avoid PayPal.

  2. Yes, you did. I was preaching the evils of PayPal long before I knew about their gun nonsense. There are many reasons to avoid them.

  3. I use eBay often, and eBay is quite anti-gun too, plus, PayPal is now owned by eBay. I believe there used to be more gun-related stuff allowed on eBay several years ago than there is allowed now, like parts kits, for example.

    I guess eBay changed their policies so as to appease the anti-gun folks – typical.

    Anyway, Despite all of the above, I was still able to get a Cammenga AK magazine loader from an eBay seller about a month ago, paid for it with PayPal, and got no hassles over it from either of them.

  4. I paid for my AR-15 Upper, Bolt Group, and a few other AR15 parts using PayPal. The part was listed as “Car Parts”

  5. I guess I don’t understand why some people are upset by PayPal abiding by their own clearly state practices. The user agreement is quite clear on any gun related sales, so it was Soldier’s Angels who opted to violate the user agreement in the first place. Unfortunately for them, it was a poorly timed risk since they decided to have their other online fundraiser at the same time.

    This is a private entity, so it’s not government oppressing anyone. It’s not like there’s a “right” for every business you encounter to accommodate gun owners, especially when there’s liability involved. I can understand approaching this from a business pressure standpoint, but I don’t comprehend the OUTRAGE(!) (/sarcasm) of getting upset that PayPal enforced their user agreement on a user that just happened to be a non-profit. I checked and did not find a special exemption for non-profits, so SA had to know what they were doing.

  6. Bitter, I disagree with your assessment of the situation. Soldiers’ Angels is selling raffle tickets, not the firearm. Soldiers’ Angels is known to PayPal as a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. I find it doubtful that they’ve never sold raffle tickets before. As one commenter put it at Castle Argghhh!, “Using *that* particular line of reasoning, every volunteer fireman selling raffle tickets for a Thanksgiving turkey should be required to have a food-handler’s certificate…”

    They didn’t contact SA before they cut off THE ENTIRE SITE, either. You don’t find at least that a bit upsetting?

    1. It doesn’t matter that they weren’t selling the gun directly, the raffle was still a clear violation of the user agreement:

      You may not use the PayPal service for activities that:
      2. relate to sales of … (h) ammunition, firearms, or certain firearm parts or accessories…

      Clearly, the raffle tickets for a gun “relate” to the sale of firearms, as per the wording of their policies. That’s the user agreement for the entire account, not just the little button for a raffle ticket for a gun. PayPal was well within the authority of the terms that SA agreed to when they opted to do this raffle.

      Not being a lawyer with thorough knowledge of all state gambling laws and definitions, I wouldn’t be shocked if PayPal also saw concern with the raffle itself. Another section of the user agreement states:

      You may not use the PayPal service for activities that:
      6. involve gambling, gaming and/or any other activity with an entry fee and a prize, including, but not limited to casino games, sports betting, horse or greyhound racing, lottery tickets, other ventures that facilitate gambling, games of skill (whether or not it is legally defined as a lottery) and sweepstakes unless the operator has obtained prior approval from PayPal and the operator and customers are located exclusively in jurisdictions where such activities are permitted by law.

      So at the very least, I’m quite sure that PayPal also had concerns about this taking place without their knowledge or prior approval, again, as required by the agreement that SA approved when they started the PayPal account. They might have done raffles before using the account, but if they didn’t get prior approval, those were also likely in violation of the terms.

      Look, it’s a crappy user agreement for non-profits and/or gun owners. I won’t argue that, but I will say that PayPal was perfectly within the bounds of the user agreement when they suspended the account. SA should have looked into the agreement on both raffle tickets (aka sweepstakes) and gun related sales before agreeing to do this. By not doing so, they were taking a risk. It may have been a calculated risk that PayPal wouldn’t likely find out about it. However, taking such a risk during a major fundraiser was not the wisest move on their part. They got caught in violation on multiple fronts, and they paid the consequences. Fortunately, PayPal has, in my mind, acted very fairly and restored their account minus the offending raffle. It’s not an ideal, but it’s a perfectly fair solution.

  7. I don’t do PayPal. Period.

    I pay using plastic (credit or debit), MO, personal check. If what I want can’t be paid using one of those options, I look elsewhere.

  8. Kevin,

    I have to agree with Bitter on this one.

    Paypal is a private business, doing business as they see fit …… which is why I don’t use them unless I really, REALLY have to.


  9. Unfortunately, if you want to do run a small operation with credit cards, Paypal is the most economical and easiest to set up.

    My gun group uses Paypal and yes we know it sucks BUT we save money that we use to advance the fight.

    To be honest, if I choose to not patronize every company that was anti-gun, I’d wouldn’t be able to spend any money. They all have antigun policies from banning guns in employee cars to support of antigun groups. They all are dirty.

  10. Paypal is owned by eBay. Their PR department is at (408) 376-7458. Please be polite, but let them know they have a PR issue. Mention that you don’t think that they meant to shut down a charity helping wounded soldiers, but they’ll want to look into it.

    They will NOT want this spinning out of control, even if they personally hate guns.

    But please be polite.

  11. Look, y’all do what you think it the right thing. I’m well over 700 positive feedbacks on eBay, such that I was given the s00per sekrit phone number when I have a problem, and I regularly give them grief for restricting a sale between two individuals who don’t live in Kommiefornia and aren’t subject to their laws.

    I also use PayPal whenever possible to buy gun parts/accessories, just to piss ’em off. I don’t use PP to sell stuff, so the only thing they can do is to cancel my membership, which they have yet to do.

  12. I don’t do PayPal. Period.

    It’s a wise move. I agree with Bitter that they are within their user agreement, but because their user agreement sucks, I won’t use them.

  13. I also don’t mind them getting a black eye over this because the more people know that PayPal is evil, the better. The only way they are going to change is if people just say no.

    1. I don’t mind them getting a black eye over their user agreement, but I think the spirited outrage over this particular situation is misplaced. SA took a risk breaking multiple parts of the contract with PayPal. I sympathize with them that the results of such a risk were not what they expected. However, some of the accusations thrown around that PayPal is being anti-veteran and anti-military because of this policy are absolutely absurd.

  14. We’ve managed to bypass PayPal! Another sponsor of the Rendezvous,, an ammo site, is doing the on-line ticket sales for us with all proceeds (minus the 3% credit card fee) going to Soldiers’ Angels. Soldiers’ Angels is still taking phone orders for those who don’t want to purchase on-line. Details here.

    And thanks again for linking!

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