Shooting Sports Retailer has reported on Facebook (see “The New Face(book) of Retailing,” SSR, November 2012) as one of the pillars of current social media and its increasing role in a retailer’s — and pretty much everyone else’s — life these days.

The social media outlet’s importance continues to grow, but even though it can make a huge difference in a retailer’s operation, unfortunately there are limits.

Facebook’s advertising policy specifically states: “Ads may not promote the sale or use of weapons, ammunition, or explosives.” And whenever a Facebook user wishes to “boost” a post (i.e., spend money to increase that post’s reach to a wider audience) that post is subject to internal review before it is approved or denied.

Boosted posts are subject to the policies delineated in Facebook’s advertising policy, to which all users tacitly agree by proceeding with any post-boosting click. When the boost request receives its review, anything related to firearms or ammunition will get a red-flag and cause it to be denied.

Facebook’s corporate headquarters is located in Menlo Park, California — a state pretty hostile to gun ownership.