U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- Big Tech doesn’t like the online firearms marketplace. Pressure from billionaires and their gun lobby has forced banks to stop doing business with gun sellers. The government has launched attacks against legitimate businesses with things like Operation Chokepoint.
It is hard for a company to sell guns online. Payment processors like Stripe do not let companies use their platforms to collect payments for firearms from customers. The web’s leading e-commerce solution, Shopify, not only bans guns but also bans firearms accessories. Conservative and pro-gun websites must walk a fine line between exercising freedom and getting canceled.
But where there is a problem, there is an opportunity. Capitalism will find a way. One person that looked at the roadblock and saw a chance to move the needle and make a buck was Greg Tanacea. He founded multiple businesses to deal with what he saw as censorship. The first is a marketplace called 2A Gun Show. The second is 2ACommerce which is designed to compete against Stripe. The third is a Shopify alternative called Whalut.com. All three platform work seamlessly and is based on the idea of freedom.
I had a chance to speak with Greg about his background and why he started the company.
John: What is the 2A Gun Show?
Greg: We like to refer to 2AGunShow.com as a critical element in the alternate web infrastructure and the future for tech in the firearms industry. 2A Gun Show is one of three products in an ecosystem we built to take on big tech. Our goal is to provide any American legally conducting commerce online the ability to operate without fear of having their web assets, or other business operations shut down because of ideological differences with their service provider. The other products in the ecosystem include 2ACommerce, which we established as a Stripe Competitor, and Whalut.com, a Shopify competitor. All of the systems work together.
Our mission is to build a community of 2A-friendly businesses and enthusiasts around an online marketplace that charges standard market rates. For some reason, many platforms in the firearms industry pillage their customers with excessive fees and closed architecture systems. All the while, their ideological enemies are getting off with some of the most affordable rates in the industry. It simply didn’t make sense to us, so we built the Gun Show and its ecosystem.
John: What makes 2A Gun Show different from other sites?
Greg: Well, to start with, we don’t discriminate based on our customer’s ideological or political opinions. That should be obvious, but sadly it needs saying giving the country’s current political climate and the number of firearm-related businesses being de-platformed by companies like Shopify, Etsy, Google, and all the social media platforms. What sets us apart from our competitors is that we’ve put a considerable amount of time into facilitating a direct connection between buyers and local merchants. Furthermore, we support local FFLs by offering complementary webstore services, giving them a digital address on 2AGunshow. This way, they don’t have to hire an expensive web development agency to build and host an eCommerce store.
On the technical side, our entire development approach is 100% opposite to every single marketplace or related eCommerce platform I’ve seen in the firearms industry. From a business standpoint, our transactional rates are lower than our competitors – which should be a significant draw for smaller FFLs – and our modern interface is the opposite of shitty. Some of our competitors look like they built their websites in the mid-nineties and haven’t updated since. While most platforms seek to lock gun sellers into their digital infrastructure, we try to free them.
The core tech behind the 2ACommece and 2AGunShow will allow users to integrate their own applications and services. Even now, our 2ACommerce system already works with all of our products, WooCommerce, in-person card swipes, Gun Broker, and more.
What about Crypto, you ask? We are the UX designers behind one of the fastest-growing blockchain platforms on the web. We have the experience and knowledge. We fully intend to be the leader in blockchain tech in the firearms industry. A few have tried and failed; this gives us the benefit of hindsight. Our site is also unique in that we are not just for selling guns. The system has full-blown event registration, ticketing, and Firearms instructor class registration tools. An instructor could use 2A Gun Show to run their whole business if they wanted to.
John: When did the site launch?
Greg: The site launched its beta version in Nov 2020, and it was a beta in the truest sense. Since our launch, we have entirely redesigned the UX interface for the product and event/class/training creation process. We are very proud of it. It launched the first week of July, and we’ve received nothing but great feedback. To all our beta launch folks… Thank you for sticking with us and helping us with your excellent feedback.
John: You have a community tab that includes physical gun shows. Doesn’t that hurt your business?
Greg: Absolutely not… We are not in the business of competing with Gun Shows; we want to promote them. Our original concept was to create a tool for shows to promote themselves, so we made a free listing. The event registration tool can be used by a promoter for advance show sales. If the name 2A Gun Show isn’t obvious enough, we love and support gun shows. We hope in the future to become a major facilitator for gun show vendor signups and a marketing tool for organizers of gun shows. We look at gun shows as an event product where organizers can create, organize, and gather ticket sales for gun shows on our platform.
John: How did you come up with the idea for 2A Gun Show?
Greg: We have been building web apps for almost 20 years, including one fortune 500 company. I’m a navy submarine vet, USCCA certified instructor; I grew up shooting, but I never thought I’d be working in the firearms industry in a hundred years. We’ve watched Big Tech encroach on all manner of our rights long before it became part of the cultural dialogue. In 2019, after Shopify shut down a legal gun store’s e-commerce platform, I said enough is enough. We decided to build an alternate infrastructure, and we started with 2A Gun Show. When we took a closer look at the firearms market, we immediately saw an opportunity to create something great. To this day, we continue to improve and innovate the platform. We won’t be satisfied for years to come. If ever.
John: Do you have a background in tech?
Greg: Yeah, it all started when I joined the US Navy as a Submarine Electronics Technician. Post Navy, I decided to go to college in Dubuque, Iowa, where I met my current business partner and best friend, Justin Phelan. That was almost 20 years ago. He Majored in Information Systems. I was an Education Major and music minor. I had a friend whose music career was blowing up, and he asked me how he could get fan contact information out of myspace and at his concerts. Justin and I built our first app to help him, and the rest was history. We’ve been building apps ever since.
John: I know other similar sites have failed. How do you plan to overcome the hurdles that stopped other sites?
Greg: I know it sounds hokey, but in a spiritual sense, a lot of it comes from the team’s belief every challenge comes with a silver lining. We view obstacles as signs that we’re on the right path. We remind one another that nothing worth doing is easy; hurdles are an invitation to innovate in disguise. We have a solid management team with complementary skillsets who come from various backgrounds whose experience positions us to tackle any challenges we meet. We love like brothers, and we fight like brothers, but at the end of the day, our shared goal unites us, and we all have a profound respect for each other. We’re also incredibly stubborn.
John: Other sites lost their payment processor because of selling guns. Do you have your own payment processor?
Greg: Yes, we do. We created 2A Commerce as a competitor to companies like PayPal and Stripe to address that very problem. It’s doing rather well on its own. With the lowest rates in the industry, it’s available to anyone who doesn’t want to risk losing their payment processing services for thinking differently than the politically motivated tech companies currently calling the shots. If you use our payment processing, we take it one step further with 2A Gun Show. Since the credit card companies are already taking their fees, we LOWER the commission fee. In contrast, our competitors stack the commission and listing fees on top of the credit card fees. To go the whole nine yards, we also waive all listing fees if you use 2A Commerce for all your processing.
John: I hear you are a strict Constitutionalist. Do you believe the Constitution is absolute?
Greg: Yes, most definitely! If I were being nominated for the supreme court, I would be referred to as the strictest originalist to ever sit on the bench.
Who told you that anyway?!?!? Word travels fast these days.
John: What new site features can you tell us about?
Greg: We’ve worked very hard since our launch day listening to our customers about issues with the website so we can better serve our community. Some of the new features we’re excited about are the Product creation process, improved and redesigned event products,
The ability to refund orders directly from the seller dashboard, recording cash payments with a new notes order, and an internal chat tool for buyers and sellers to communicate via the platform safely and securely.
As far as future features are concerned… You’ll just have to wait and see. Suffice it to say that we are developing the most integrated and advanced software solutions the Firearms industry has ever seen, and there is a reason… Most platforms currently available began with folks who came from the firearms industry and decided to build software. We have been building software our whole careers, and we grew up with firearms, so we can bring years of software development experience and merge it with something we all personally hold dear – our second amendment right and the right to bear arms.
Check out 2A Gun Show at www.2agunshow.com
About John Crump
John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, or at www.crumpy.com.
The post Speaking About Big Tech Alternatives With Greg Tanacea of 2A Gun Show appeared first on AmmoLand.com.
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