Gawker has just published a list of gun owners in New York City. Reporter John Cook says he got the names of licensed gun owners in the five boroughs via a Freedom of Information Law request two-and-a-half years ago. The New York Police Department did not give up gun owners’ addresses, Cook writes, despite state law saying those are public records, too.
But those addresses “have been freely available online for more than two years,” Cook writes. “Two databases listing all of the handgun owners were initially posted online anonymously at a web site called Who’s Packing NY in August of 2010. That web site is no longer working, but a mirror—complete with the two full databases available for download—is still working here.”
Gun owners outraged by the gun-permit map published by the Westchester County, N.Y., Journal News, he writes, “have had those addresses plastered on the Internet for years without it causing a problem.”
You can see some of the reaction to Gawker’s piece on Twitter.
Previously: Newspaper publishes names, addresses of gun owners | Where The Journal News went wrong in publishing names, addresses of gun owners | Newspaper can’t have more gun permit data, county says, after publishing names, addresses outraged community | New York politicians will push for law to keep handgun records secret | ‘Journalists should not be threatened,’ says Journal News publisher