Update: Guns & Ammo Backs Down, Won’t Sue Guns Save Life Over Taurus Curve Post


Yesterday John Boch, president of Illinois gun rights org Guns Save Life received a threat of legal action over his strongly-worded post that took a dim view of Taurus’s latest product, the Curve .380 ACP pistol (as well as G&A’s alleged pimping of the new gun). Today the Intermedia mother ship called John and assumed a much more conciliatory tone than the initial foot-stamping by online editor Dusty Gibson. Here’s John’s latest post, reprinted here with permission . . .

Todd Smith, the VP of Content Development for Intermedia called from New York this morning around 9:30am or so to discuss a resolution to the legal threat made by Dusty Gibson on Thursday.  In that earlier email, Mr. Gibson had threatened legal action against Guns Save Life if we didn’t pull down objectionable components of our story, TAURUS TURD: Guns & Ammo loves Taurus’ new Taurus Curve, a curved .380 pocket pistol.

Mr. Smith had a much more conciliatory tone than Dusty’s initial threat-laden demand.  In fact, he was pretty nice.

Mr. Smith said there would be no legal action taken against Guns Save Life.  Period.

In the spirit of trying to rebuild some goodwill, I asked if it would make them happier if I killed off their photos in our blog post.  He said it would.  So, we’ve replaced the Guns & Ammo story photos (which can be found here) with new photos from Taurus USA.  Easy enough, right?

In the course of our conversation, I asked if Mr. Smith knew why Guns & Ammo execs in their headquarters city of Peoria, Illinois had never come to a Guns Save Life meeting in the couple of years we’ve been holding monthly meetings there.  You know, if nothing else, but to put a face to the company and promote their publications in person while supporting the fight for gun rights in Illinois.  He didn’t know but would forward the information back to the Peoria crew.

We look forward to seeing them at our meetings.


  1. avatar former water walker says:

    I’m neutral on this. But how the hell do you judge a gun without handling or shooting it?

    1. avatar Wesley T. Hartman says:

      Based on features that are unnecessary and/or counter-intuitive or a possible failure point.

      Though, truly, a preview should be followed by a review.

      1. avatar Former Water Walker says:

        Or you are one of the legions of Taurus haters…

        1. avatar Wesley T. Hartman says:

          I’m not though. I happen to like Taurus. I also like Smith & Wesson, but I think trigger locks built into a gun are stupid even though I’ve never handled a Smith & Wesson with a built-in trigger lock because of its potential for failure. One can reasonably look at the features of a firearm and draw some conclusions from them without hating an entire brand. And, like I said, following up a preview with a review only makes sense, especially if you criticized the weapon with the preview.

        2. avatar Ralph says:

          @Wesley, removing the gun lock from a Smith & Wesson is a five minute job and does not leave a hole in the gun. Trying to get customer service from Taurus is a six month job that leaves a hole in your gun safe. The choice is obvious.

        3. avatar Jack says:

          I like Taurus enough to run a PT92 as my IDPA gun. They’ve convinced me that they can build a reliable, usable semi auto pistol for a competitive price. I wouldn’t personally buy a judge, but I think their pursuit of .410 handguns shows a willingness to think outside the box that I respect. But this gun…

          1. 380, why are you wasting my time with a 380?
          2. No sights, who’s idea was that?
          3. Belt clip: tell me again why I want to stick a gun in my pants with nothing covering the trigger guard.
          4. Integrated laser: Put a rail on it and I will decide which laser I want, maybe even one that turns on intuitively.

          Some guns you don’t have to shoot to know you don’t have to shoot them.

        4. avatar Wesley T. Hartman says:

          Ralph, I could also just not buy a Smith & Wesson with a trigger lock… and my buddy got his Taurus Gaucho back with 2 weeks after the trigger broke. I’m not taking a dump on either company here. I like both quite a bit.

    2. avatar Hugh Glass says:

      Moms Demand and the rest of the Antis do judge guns, without handling or shooting them, all the time. Remember, unless a gun is in the hands of trained law enforcement or their bodyguards, every gun is a evil, homicidal killer that could go off at any time for any reason, especially if there is any kids around.

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        To be fair, we judge Shannon without handling her. And except for Dirk, we don’t want to.

    3. avatar Chicago Steve says:

      Well, Guns and Ammo did shoot the Remington R51 and we all know how well that turned out….

    4. avatar Grindstone says:

      Take a look at it yourself and see why.

  2. avatar Vhyrus says:

    I think it was overreacting on both sides. It was childish to specifically call out G&A, and it was very petty to threaten a lawsuit over an opinion.

    1. avatar ShootingTheBull410 says:

      I’m a stickler for accuracy, so I’m gonna point this out — they never threatened a lawsuit over *an opinion*. Opinions are protected first amendment speech.

      What they threatened legal action over was a claim of copyright violation (by using G&A’s photos without permission) and for “improperly quoting” their publication. They were upset about “slanderous statements”, sure, but what they threatened legal action over was (and I quote) “you have until Nov. 21, 2014 at 8 a.m. CT to remove all content from your website that was stolen and/or improperly quoting our publication.”

      Not saying they were right or wrong. Just pointing out that nobody was threatening legal action over an opinion. If that were to happen, the entire Internet would explode.

      1. avatar Vhyrus says:

        If GSL had written ‘We heart G&A and the Taurus Curve’, there would have been no legal threat even if they had used every image from the mag. My statement may not jive with what G&A claim but it is still accurate.

      2. avatar tdiinva says:

        This was a dispute between private parties. The First Amendment is not involved here.

        1. avatar Rusty Shackleford says:

          No, but under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “Fair Use” for purposes such as Criticism, Comment, News Reporting, Teaching, Scholarship, and Research. It sounds to me like he is covered by 5 of the 6 criteria for fair use when just one will suffice.

  3. avatar Avid Reader says:

    Sounds like the adults from Intermedia finally arrived in the room.

  4. avatar bontai Joe says:

    Glad to see that cooler heads prevailed.

  5. avatar Curtis in IL says:

    I don’t think it’s a case of backing down, so much as it’s a case of corporate executives correcting the mistake of a low level editor who made stupid threats in a facebook post.

  6. avatar Hannibal says:

    I think it would be great if any corporation or person threatening legal action would have to pay for the ‘defendants’ attorney consultation if there was no such action possible.

    Might cut down on this bs.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      A “loser pays” tort system would clear up a lot of what’s wrong with the legal system.

    2. avatar Grindstone says:

      And would scare those without much money from pursuing any legitimate suits for fear of the consequences of losing.

  7. avatar Chip Bennett says:

    So, G&A do have some grown-up lawyers on staff, after all.

  8. avatar ropingdown says:

    There really should be a decent interval of testing before a gun is declared a turd, unless there is a blatant safety issue involved.

    What was wrong, IMHO, is that the attack needlessly went after the Curve, rather than the simply pointing out that big paid ads in the same issue that publishes a favorable review of the ad buyer’s product undermine credibility. We all knew that already. It happens every month in car mags. And ski magazines. And fashion magazines. Because they are magazines.

    1. avatar tcba_joe says:

      There should be an even bigger period of testing before declaring something worth while.

      I look at every gun design with suspicion until there had been a consensus among the professionals. Too much good stuff out there to paint every gun as awesome work minimal track record because it holds the promise of being the next wonder gun.

      It’s on the manufacturer to prove it’s reliability. You can’t prove a negative, in this case it’s not on me to prove it isn’t reliable.

  9. avatar Jon Renguul says:

    Who is G&A PR? They should be fired for ever letting their client think this would go smoothly in the community. Then again most informed gun people tend to look at G&A with some disdain anyway.

  10. avatar TexGal says:

    I don’t hate Taurus, just really don’t like this model. Why? Because to me, it’s ugly.
    I don’t buy ugly guns. Don’t need a review, don’t need to handle it, don’t need to test fire it.
    Really don’t hate any handgun manufactuer. I’ve had a Taurus, a High Point, Charter Arms, in the past, I have a Chippa Rhino .357 2″ D/S action revolver. Some people think it’s an ugly gun, I don’t

  11. avatar Pete says:

    Guns and ammo pimps the highest payers gun every month. It was Taurus this time. I don’t believe anything they review seriously

  12. avatar JT says:

    What it comes down to is Dusty Gibson f’ed up by sending the threat of a suit of himself instead of consulting with Intermedia’s executives and lawyers first and having them decide if it should be done. There has been enough bad press surrounding G&A over the past few years and Intermedia likely doesn’t want any more.

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