Now in its eighth year of operation, The Truth About Guns is about to pass another milestone: 1.5m comments. A few recent commentators questioned our editorial independence. Fair enough. In this era of “fake news,” with the old guard gun mags still in their advertisers’ pockets, you need to know whom you can trust.

You can trust us.

TTAG is employee-owned and ad-supported. A company called Media Lodge handles all our advertising sales. To their credit, as witnessed by the fact of our ongoing partnership, Media Lodge has never attempted to influence TTAGs news, reviews or editorials.

It’s worth repeating: TTAG maintains a strict separation between ads and editorial. We don’t spike stories to appease our advertisers. We don’t sugar-coat our reviews to please gunmakers. We tell the truth about guns. Period.

It’s not as hard as it may seem (save the writing bit). I’ve been amazed, delighted and proud of the firearms industry’s support for our editorial independence. For example . . .

We’ll occasionally warn a gunmaker seeking a review that the result will be no-holds-barred. Their reaction has been, to a man, positive. “We want honest feedback,” a mid-sized AR maker told me. “Don’t hold back.”

We don’t.

TTAG sometimes publishes advertiser-sponsored posts and ad-sponsored email blasts. These are clearly labeled as such, so readers can judge the content without concerns about our objectivity.

As for our relationship with TTAG’s new home range (The Range at Austin), we give them coverage — both appropriate mentions in our text and clearly labelled sponsored posts — in exchange for access. Nothing more, nothing less.

The Truth About Guns is America’s most popular firearms blog. We got here by telling it like it is. That’s the way it is now, and that’s the way it will continue to be as long as I’m at the helm.

Thank you for your patronage.

58 Responses to A Quick Note About TTAG’s Editorial Independence: Housekeeping

      • I’ve found a little trick to avoid that. Everything you want to see on just about any site will load up in the first 3 or 4 seconds, yet it usually takes a full minute for the page to stop loading. So I’ll just hit the X to stop loading the page after a few seconds. Used to drive me nuts on this sight the way I’d try to scroll down and every time a new ad would load the page jumped and I’d have to scroll again several times until it stopped loading them. I’ve also found the same trick can be useful on the laptop. Some sights will block you if you’re using ad block or if you’ve checked 10 stories or whatever in a month without paying the subscription fee. Just stop the page load after the first couple of seconds and you usually won’t get blocked.

      • And the content of the comments section is unmatched.

        Aw, shucks. Well, I do try my best.

        What? Oh, you were talking about all the commenters! (Giant ego deflates.)

      • Speaking of which, is there any consensus on the use of commentator vs commenter?

        It seems to me that a person who is officially posting an opinion piece is in fact a commentator whereas person like the rst of us who respond to those opinions are commenting, therefore commenters. Just a little pet peeve of mine, as is the fact that spell-check always marks commenter as misspelled.

        We return you now to your original programming.

  1. I wouldn’t bother if you were were “in the pocket” of gun manufacturers. I would just bitch on FB. I have no EZ answers at monetizing your blog. My wife has millions of page views on her decorating/antique blog without a corresponding income…

  2. Carry on TTAG!!!

    Many thanks to Robert, all the staff and especially to the people that post here…

  3. That is a fine looking dog there.

    Oops, I meant to post this under the Debbie Wasserman-Schultz article. That is a fine looking schnauzer, too!

  4. over the last year or so I’ve seen a rise in the # of people who like to conspiracy theory and accuse TTAG of being “in the pocket” of the manufacturers, or of their sponsors, or whoever…

    Here’s my experience:

    TTAG made friends with Sig (as many have noted). Sig gave ’em a tour, supplied guns for them to review, whatever. Well, Sig introduced a new line of ammo, a couple of years ago. TTAG sent me some to test. It was horrible. It was faulty. And, worst, they appear to have sent different ammo to the reviewers, than they did to the resellers.

    I published a scathing review.

    What would TTAG do? Would they spike it, to “protect” their relationship with their new friends? Nope. Without a question, they ran my review. They didn’t ask for anything to be changed. Robert said “We’re the TRUTH about guns. So we’re going to tell the truth, no matter what.”

  5. Everything I ever wanted to know about objectivity and this blog I learned from the R51 review and Remingtons response to it. With that review, and the fallout after that, you could tell they weren’t in the manufacturers pocket. Not to mention the exec going after Leghorn at SHOT.

  6. My only complaint is Brow nells trying to sneak ads into my comments without paying me. Cut me a check and I’ll stop misspelling words and adding extra spaces.

  7. This is a great site with great content. My only quibbles are the grouchy know-it-all comments and the adverts with either boobehs or strange/gross looking probiotic, digestion enhancers, etc.

  8. Guess seemingly random comments occasionally get noticed. No conspiracy theorist here – in fact I’ve drunk some of the JWT STI kool-aid and bought a Tactical SS 4.0 that’s currently getting a custom slide treatment ala DVC Carry variety. Keep writing the good write. Your blog has aided my ballistic research efforts and I abstain from the political veins. 6 yrs as a reader with no signs of slowing, just vainly wish more 2A legislative action was coming down the pipe.

    • I’m not quite sure what you’re saying. Or implying. Tyler and Jon are native Texans who live in the Austin area. Nick, Dan, Jeremy and I moved here from the North.

      Austin is a liberal city, but it’s NOTHING compared to what us Yankees endured.

      • Silencer Shop is in Austin. Magpul moved here. Jesse James Firearms. The Range at Austin is huge, and even includes like 8 indoor, 100-yard rifle lanes. Heck, Alex Jones is in Austin. The cigars I smoke most often are made in Austin. I mean…it’s liberal for Texas but it’s still Texas 😉

        But only two of the TTAG crew are actually inside Travis County 😛 …although I probably will be within the next year, likely moving closer into the Austin area from up just inside Williamson County. Wife and family don’t feel like being out in the boonies or even the ‘burbs. As much as I’d love a few acres out in the sticks. That said, it’s nice to be a few blocks from coffee, good food, grocery store, fun things going on…

        • You haven’t been here very long, Jeremy, so you get a pass. But give it a little while, and you’ll realize that Austin isn’t just “liberal for Texas”, but is a hardcore liberal city that can rival such socialist utopias as San Francisco and Seattle in its leftist stupidity. It’s gotten so ridiculous in the past couple years that I’ve accelerated the timeline for our move to our place in Caldwell county. I used to really love Austin, but it’s becoming Just Another Liberal Shithole at an alarming rate. I thought we would retire in our current house, and just eight years later, I’m eager to get out.

  9. As a writer of gun and movie reviews for TTAG, the very notion that this blog would go soft on any product or manufacturer is completely ludicrous to me.

    TTAG’s reviews are tough, and tough reviews have cost this blog dearly several times. Most manufacturers do not appreciate being called out when they make a crap product.

    However, unlike some sites that consider every gun ever made to be a “joy to shoot,” this site lives up to its name. You will get the truth here, whether you like it or not.

  10. Sure, it’s easy to remain independent when almost none of your ads are for the products you review. But once you start reviewing toenail fungus cream, erectile dysfunction meds, baldness cures, celebrity taints, and ONE WEIRD TRICK to get lower mortgage payments, then we’ll see how much objectivity you can keep…

  11. Being from Schertz TX, I would enjoy a TTAG event in Austin. Give me an excuse to take the “boys” on a field trip and meet some fellow TTAGs Texans.

  12. Nonbody questions your independence.

    We question your journalism, and click-bait BS, but not your independence.

    Permanently banning the stupid and annoying “carry dump of the day” posts would go a long way towards increasing journalistic integrity. So would firing anyone who thought that an April Fools Day post was a good idea.

  13. I would tend to agree with this, especially in comparison with some other sites which shall not be named by me but whose name could be rewritten Barn Sigmear, and whose editorial and story choice content seems heavily influenced by the policy views of the owner syndicate. Just sayin’.

  14. Other than a long ago review of Ruger LCR 22lr that only thing I can criticize. But do forgive the male, who ragged on the heavy trigger pull. Here’s my review:
    Tell me why a 66 year old woman has no problem can empty 8 rounds of 22lr, quickly and accurately with a touch of arthritis. 8 rounds of CCI mini mags won’t stop a threat. Let’s be realistic, no one likes to be shot period not to mention that 22rl has probably killed more people and any other caliber. Don’t be a cupcake just because you may not have been taught proper trigger placement. I do have a number of semiautomatic pistols but in light of carry what you shoot most accurately is the rule. Low recoil equals accurate. Also have a Ruger SR LCR 22lr pistol. Just make sure you clean feed ramp squeaky clean and virtually rarely if ever jams. As my dad said “whatever floats your boat”

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