NRA's Facebook page shuttered, Twitter activity halted

It looks like the National Rifle Association is backing away from social media as the U.S. grapples with the Newtown school massacre and gun control.

Dara Kerr Former senior reporter
Dara Kerr was a senior reporter for CNET covering the on-demand economy and tech culture. She grew up in Colorado, went to school in New York City and can never remember how to pronounce gif.
Dara Kerr
2 min read
The NRA posted this photo on Twitter the day before the Newtown school shooting. Now it's Facebook page has completely disappeared. Screenshot by Dara Kerr/CNET

In the wake of the Newtown tragedy, when an armed man stormed a Connecticut elementary school and killed 26 people, including 20 children, gun control has been under high scrutiny from both lawmakers and citizens.

The National Rifle Association -- the longtime champion of gun ownership rights -- has stayed conspicuously out of the debate, however. So much so, that it has even ceased all of its social media activity -- its Facebook page was recently shuttered and the group has not posted a single new tweet on its Twitter account.

The last tweet from the NRA was posted at 9:36 a.m. on December 14, which was the day of the massacre, and offered members a holiday giveaway promotion. The group typically posts at least two to three times a day.

One of its most recent tweets, from the day before the Newtown shooting, boasted that its Facebook page topped 1.7 million "likes."

However, the NRA's official Facebook page has now completely disappeared. When users attempt to visit www.facebook.com/nationalrifleassociation, they are immediately navigated to Facebook's homepage. A Facebook spokesperson told CNET that the social network has not taken any action on the NRA's page -- which leads one to surmise that the NRA took it down voluntarily.

It's unclear, however, why the Facebook page was taken down. Some reporters, like from the Daily Dot and TechCrunch, believe it's because the page had become the focal point of rage from anti-gun advocates, as well as a place of unruly debate.

CNET contacted the NRA for comment. We'll update the story when we get more information.