Fairfax, VA –-(Ammoland.com)-The National Rifle Association has stopped production on all new live NRATV programming, although NRATV will continue to air its archive of past content.
The decision comes after the NRA filed a lawsuit against longtime marketing agency Ackerman McQueen Inc for breach of contract. The marketing and media agency are the producers of NRATV programming.
The NRA paid Ackerman McQueen a total of $42 million in 2017, which was 14% of the gun rights group's total budget. The NRA requested analytics from Ackerman McQueen to measure the rate of return of NRATV. Up until this point, the agency did not provide any sort of data about the impact of the media source.
According to the lawsuit that the NRA filed against Ackerman McQueen, the company is contractually obligating to supply this data in the NRA upon request. The NRATV production company agedly refused to provide these statistics to the gun rights group after multiple ignored request.
For their part, Ackerman McQueen claimed that the lawsuit was frivolous.
“The lawsuit is ‘frivolous, inaccurate and intended to cause harm to the reputation of our company,” Ackerman McQueen said in responding to the lawsuit after the lawsuit was filed. “We will defend our position and performance aggressively and look forward to continuing to serve the NRA's membership.”
On Tuesday night the NRA made its announcement that NRATV in its current form is more or less dead. NRA Executive Vice President and CEO Wayne LaPierre released a statement to the NRA members.
“As many of you may know, we have been evaluating if our investment in NRATV is generating the benefits needed,” LaPierre said in the letter. “This consideration included the return on investment and the cost and the direction of the content. Many members expressed concern about the messaging on NRATV becoming too far removed from our core mission: defending the Second Amendment.”
“So, after careful consideration, I am announcing that starting today, we are undergoing a significant change in our communications strategy. We are no longer airing “live TV” programming. Whether and when we return to “live” programming is a subject of ongoing analysis.”
The statement echoed the concerns of some of the rank and file members. Dana Loesch, on her NRATV show “Relentless,” attacked the popular children's show “Thomas & Friends” for partnering with the UN to increase diversity on the show. In the segment white KKK hoods were photoshopped over the trains. To a lot of members, it seemed like spending money on issues outside the realm of the Second Amendment.
Other members believed the NRA was concentrating too much money on creating stars and not enough on pushing back against bad gun laws. Loesch was making a reported amount of $1 million a year. Loesch and other stars of NRATV are not NRA employees. They are employees of Ackerman McQueen.
Ackerman McQueen released a statement to the New York Times stating that they were “not surprised that the NRA is unwilling to honor its agreement to end our contract and our long-standing relationship in an orderly and amicable manner.”
“When given the opportunity to do the right thing, the NRA. once again has taken action that we believe is intended to harm our company even at the expense of the NRA itself,” Ackerman went onto state.
Some have also blamed Ackerman McQueen for being behind the attempted coup of LaPierre by Oliver North and allegedly Chris Cox. Cox resigned from his NRA position this week after being put on administrative leave. North worked with Ackerman McQueen at the time of the takeover attempt.
Earlier this month the NRA board’s audit committee rescinded North's permission to work with Ackerman McQueen. The ultimatum would force North to choose between the NRA board and his work with the marketing and media firm.
On Wednesday Judge Nolan Dawkins in circuit court in Alexandria, Virginia, ruled that the NRA does not immediately have to pay Ackerman McQueen $1.6 million that the group owes the marketing company.
This ruling in combination with NRA pulling the plug on NRATV could be the death blow to The Oklahoma City firm after a 36-year relationship with the NRA. Insiders have said the majority of the Ackerman's revenue comes from the NRA contract.
Although several NRATV stars have updated their Twitter bios to remove references to the NRA none have made a public statement.
About John Crump
John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. He is the former CEO of Veritas Firearms, LLC and is the co-host of The Patriot News Podcast which can be found at www.blogtalkradio.com/patriotnews. John has written extensively on the patriot movement including 3%'ers, Oath Keepers, and Militias. In addition to the Patriot movement, 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 is currently working on a book on leftist deplatforming methods and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, on Facebook at realjohncrump, or at www.crumpy.com.