There’s an old saying in PR that any publicity is good publicity. And while that may technically be true, it doesn’t mean that drumming it up is always the right thing to do. Take for example TacticalGear.com, a website that sells tactical gear to law enforcement, military and civilian shooters. They apparently provided some equipment to the Aurora shooter. But the speed with which this information came to light has some people wondering . . .
SoldierSystems.net sums up the facts:
Early Friday morning a monster gunned down innocent moviegoers in Aurora, Colorado. You might ask what that has to do with Chesterfield, Missouri and normally so would we. But, Chesterfield, Missouri based TacticalGear.com thrust themselves into the middle of this act.
You see, the perpetrator of this heinous crime is said to have purchased a Blackhawk! vest, 2 pouches and a knife from them in early July, according to their records. In fact, that info is ALL over the news. It seems a bit off to make such a big deal over that. A vest, knife, and two pouches? This isn’t like it’s the weapon.
Already, it was starting to look like someone going beyond being a cooperative citizen to looking for some publicity.
The implication is that TacticalGear.com volunteered that information to various news sources which then spread like wildfire.
This wouldn’t be the first time a company has seen their sales skyrocket following a nationally publicized event — Skittles are still seeing record sales following the Trayvon Martin shooting. But the way in which TacticalGear.com seems to be going about this would appear to raise some questions about their ethics. We called their COO, Andrew Hoefener for comment, but were unable to reach him.
It’s one thing to express regret that your products were used by a monster – even if tangentially – in the process of slaughtering innocent people. Some companies would even donate the proceeds of the sale to…I don’t know…the Red Cross or some other worthy charity. But spreading the word that a mass murderer got his gear from you in order to generate pub and cash in on follow-up sales would be more than a tad ghoulish. If that’s what they did.