Thursday, 6 January 2011

Shooting mags "worse than porn"

Has your local newsagent decided that shooting magazines should be X-rated? Gary Redman's local branch of WHSmith appears to have done just that. He shops at the Harpur Centre in Bedford, and reports that he hunted high and low for his favourite shooting mags. He writes:
"After 10 minutes or so I gave up and decided to ask a shop assistant. I was somewhat confused, as I have bought your magazines there previously.
I was then shown to the rear of the store, some distance from all the other magazines shelves, to find that all shooting magazines are now kept behind a customer services counter where they cannot be directly accessed by browsers. You have to go behind the counter, i.e. into the staff / serving area, to get to them.

The desk is located in a narrow part of the building not regularly used by large numbers of shoppers. Suffice to say, if I were a new reader to shooting magazines, I would have assumed they weren't stocked by the store. Without making the effort to ask I would have gone away empty handed.

So, it would appear that shooting magazines of all types are now considered less acceptable than pornographic publications, which after all have only been moved to the top shelf! I find this completely outrageous. Are WHS suggesting members of the public shouldn't browse your publications in case they are encouraged to run amok with a gun? What next? Perhaps they will soon be asking you to cover them in plain wrapping so that the covers can't cause offence!"
Does your local newsagent display shooting magazines proudly alongside fishing, photography and the rest? Or are they hidden away from the public gaze? I'd be really interested to hear what the situation is like around the country - and if you can get a photo (perhaps with your mobile phone) of any displays, so much the better. They probably can't arrest you for it!

7 comments:

Richard said...

WH Smith in Chiswick sometimes seem to shuffle them to inaccessible parts of their display but to be fair they probably earn as much money from charging planogram fees as they do from selling lots of magazines (there seem to be thousands these days). My best local outlet is Newmart an independent newsagent at 143 Askew Rd. The proprietor gets in whatever you want, but in very limited quantities and so letting him know in advance helps. Unfortunately there is now a Sainsbury’s Local 100m down the road and another mid sized Tesco due to open 200m up the road (in the next 6 months), so he is being squeezed very hard. Buying from him may cost more than a subscription, but it's worthwhile if my small contribution helps him stay open.

Jack said...

Reading this reminded me - my wife used to buy shooting magazines for my son when he was going through puberty.

Just saying ... ;)

vicky said...

My local Post Office and shop display their shooting mags just like everything else (no Sporting Shooter though!). The supermarkets and big chains don't seem to stock any counryside mags- not even Horse and Hound. They are ahppy to display many gaming mags though with covers showing big CGI guns brandished by impossible CGI ladies.......

Greg said...

@Richard
I live in Percy Rd. What a coincidence.

Gary Thompson said...

Out of respect for your post, I raced off to my local Barnes & Noble and switched Guns & Ammo with People. Fortunately, I live in a pretty hunter and gun friendly state. I can't imagine this happening here in Colorado without gunfire ringing out, but I will be diligent to keep a keen eye out for such shenanigans.

plorto said...

Hi.
Not a problem at WH Smiths in either Swindon or Chippenham in Wiltshire. A wide selection on display next to the angling and other sporting mags.

Mind you I live in Wiltshire - not some liberal metrosexual London centric borough thank God!

Chris (TheRambler) Dean said...

Must admit that where I live, there is no discrimination on any of the hunting magazines, I think its disgusting that they would even do that!!
This country is sinking fast, just when you think we have hit the bottom, we are reminded of the depths of lowness it can get too!!