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Symantec ends cheap Norton offer to NRA members
NRA calls it 'a shameful display of political and civic cowardice' and some users agree
Symantec has ended a promotion that saw it offer discounts on Norton-branded products to members of the US National Rifle Association (NRA).
The promotion's web page at https://us.norton.com/nra has disappeared, but remains in the archives of the Wayback Machine, which reveals members were offered discounts of more than half for the first year of a subscription to Norton Security services.
The company announced the end of the promotion on Twitter, without explanation.
Symantec has stopped its discount program with the National Rifle Association.— Symantec (@symantec) February 23, 2018
The background to the company's decision was protests about the NRA's position on gun laws in the wake of the killing of 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. Gun control advocates have called for tighter gun laws, a proposition the NRA rejects.
Activists have therefore attempted to mobilise consumers into actions that damage the NRA, such as by lobbying business to end "commercial partnerships" with the association. Such partnerships typically see businesses offer discounts to NRA members.
Symantec is the only technology company to have ended its relationship to date. The NRA said, in a statement, that companies who end corporate relationships with it have indulged in "a shameful display of political and civic cowardice."
"The loss of a discount will neither scare nor distract one single NRA member from our mission to stand and defend the individual freedoms that have always made America the greatest nation in the world."
Symantec users' response to the decision were polarised. In this thread users say things like "Thank you, Norton/Symantec, for standing up for what is right. I will definitely keep my account with you!" But in this thread, titled "How do I leave Symantec like they left the NRA?" comments like "Dear Symantec, attached is a copy of my receipt to McAfee I think I have convinced 27 people so far to do the same as me. Goodbye," are prevalent. ®
Bootnote: The Register's position? Summed up nicely in this Tweet.