Roku Will Not Drop NRA TV Amid Pressure From Protestors
"We do not curate or censor based on viewpoint."
Streaming company Roku on Tuesday issued a statement that it will not be dropping NRA TV from its lineup of programming options.
Pressure for companies to cut ties with the National Rifle Association have increased over the past week following the fatal school shooting in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 dead. The hashtag #DumpNRATV began trending, calling for such streamers as Apple, Google, Amazon and Roku to pull NRA TV content from their services.
"While the vast majority of all streaming on our platform is mainstream entertainment, voices on all sides of an issue or cause are free to operate a channel," Roku said in its statement. "We do not curate or censor based on viewpoint." The company noted that it does "not and have not ever had a commercial relationship with the NRA."
NRA TV is a free channel that Roku users can seek out. The channel has no ads and showcases content focused on firearms. Roku said that it welcomes "other important groups to use our platform to share their messages too," such as Moms Demand Action, a group formed shortly after the Parkland shooting demanding streamers cut ties with NRA TV.
A change.org petition was started demanding Amazon remove NRA TV from its services, with over 200,000 signatures.
Roku is the first and only company to respond to calls for dropping NRA TV at this time.
Read the full statement below.
We share deep sadness about the recent tragedy that occurred in Florida.
Our streaming platform allows our customers to choose from thousands of entertainment, news and special interest channels, representing a wide range of topics and viewpoints. Customers choose and control which channels they download or watch, and parents can set a pin to prevent channels from being downloaded. While the vast majority of all streaming on our platform is mainstream entertainment, voices on all sides of an issue or cause are free to operate a channel. We do not curate or censor based on viewpoint. We are not promoting or being paid to distribute NRA TV. We do not and have not ever had a commercial relationship with the NRA. Their channel is free to consumers with no ads. We welcome Moms Demand Action and other important groups to use our platform to share their messages too.
While open to many voices, we have policies that prohibit the publication of content that is unlawful, incites illegal activities or violates third-party rights, among other things. If we determine a channel violates these policies, it will be removed. To our knowledge, NRA TV is not currently in violation of these content policies.