Comcast Spotlight, the division of Comcast Corp. responsible for local ad sales, reaches 33 million homes in 80 TV markets.
That’s an audience U.S. gun shop owners will no longer have access to. Comcast, the nation’s largest cable company, has decided to stop accepting cable-TV ads that promote gun sales.
“Consistent with longstanding NBC policies, Comcast Spotlight has decided it will not accept new advertising for firearms or weapons moving forward,” Comcast Spotlight spokesman Chris Ellis said in a statement. “This policy aligns us with the guidelines in place at many media organizations.”
Shop owners upset
The owners of Bob’s Little Sport Shop in Glassboro, N.J., are none too pleased. They say they’ve been advertising with Comcast for about 10 years, spending roughly $12,000 annually on TV spots.
Part-owner Wayne Viden says Comcast is “demonizing” businesses like his in response to the massacre at Sandy Hook.
“They’re putting us in the same category of a psychopath,” said Viden. “Our store, our customers, we’re all law-abiding citizens. We’re doing everything by the book. We’re not going to back down from what we do. We’re not the bad people.”
Comcast offered Bob’s Little Sport Shop a chance to change its TV ads, according to Viden, one of which featured images of firearms as well as two young boys using a bow.
Any plans to take Comcast up on the offer?
“No,” said Viden. “Our business is firearms and archery. We’re not going to shoot a commercial that’s not going to show what we do.”
This disclosure: WHYY content partner NBC10 is owned by Comcast.