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The “Official” Word on the ‘Recoil’ Magazine Gaffe – Updated

This gets even better. According to David Reeder of ‘KitUp!’ the statement below by My Galloway (who no one can now reach) is not an official position. In Reeder’s article it sounds as if ‘Recoil’ Editor Jerry Tsai is saying that Galloway did this of his own accord and is off the reservation. Unfortunately, his only source for this denial is Tsai, the epicenter of the controversy. Wonderful. ‘Recoil’ publisher Source Interlink Media doesn’t have a single voice and hasn’t addressed the issues. Regardless of whether this remains their position, they haven’t issued a retraction or clarification. And, they still have intimated that the anti-Second Amendment sentiments weren’t Tsai’s but rather H&K’s. H&K has officially denied this.

To summarize: The “Offical” position is unoffically the unofficial position. Is anyone in charge? What a mess!

Please read ‘Recoil’ magazine publisher Source Interlink Media’s position on Editor Jerry Tsai’s Second Amendment gaffe in issue number 4. For those of you unaware of this internet crap storm please read this first

In light of some of the comments and complaints made about a paragraph in a recent article about the Heckler & Koch MP7A1, Recoil wishes to make the following points clear:

· It is simply not credible for anyone to question Recoil’s support for, and commitment to, the Second Amendment. Recoil is first and foremost a gun lifestyle magazine, aimed at the modern shooting enthusiast.

· The opinions in the paragraph in question accurately reflected those of the manufacturer, and should have been reported as direct quotes. Recoil acknowledges the way the paragraph was written has caused unnecessary confusion.

· Jerry Tsai, a passionate gun enthusiast and the visionary behind Recoil magazine, will remain as editor of Recoil.

We thank you for your support and understanding.

Quite honestly, if you read the article, it was one paragraph that was actually quoted from the manufacturer and we did not state it that way. Recoil has 26,000 likes on face book and the magazine has only been out for three issues and issue number 4 is just hitting the streets. I honestly believe that this will not hurt the magazine. I have not lost anyone as a result of this and do not expect to.

Joe Galloway
Associate Publisher
5.0 Mustang & Super Fords
Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords
Phone 813-675-3493
Fax 813-675-3557
Assistant: Jennifer Conklin 813-675-3507

Now, I have a few words. Initially, I didn’t want to throw Jerry Tsai under the bus. As I understand it, he is a very nice guy and he had the vision and passion to launch ‘Recoil’ in the first place. But, after talking to many in industry I realized that Mr Tsai was way out of his league here. If it hadn’t been this, his inexperience would have manifested itself somewhere else. I have come to the conclusion that if ‘Recoil’ is to survive, there is no way that Mr Tsai can edit or write for it. Unfortunately, publisher Source Interlink Media is so naive about the firearms industry that they don’t get it either. Pretty scary. Even worse, they aren’t getting it after losing multiple advertisers. They don’t believe they have lost readers either. They think that Facebook ‘likes’ equal readers. What they don’t get is that folks have ‘liked’ them on Facebook so that they can more easily follow the lunacy.

But, what is worse than some losing advertisers and readers is their relationship with the very industry that they are supposed to be covering. Rather than manning up and accepting Mr Tsai’s words, they are now blaming the words and associated anti-Second Amendment sentiment on Heckler & Koch. Well done. You’ve now alienated one gun maker and the others are probably rubbing their chins wondering if you’ll make them look bad as well. Who is going to provide samples for those cute little photo layouts? What gun company is going to take them to the range? Who will even talk to them? You can’t have a magazine without content. I supported ‘Recoil’ from the beginning and I would have stayed right behind them had they shown industry that they were willing to learn from this and move forward. Instead, they don’t get it at all. They’ve now taken an adversarial stance toward the firearms and tactical industries. I can’t abide by that.

I have heard various versions of this today so I’ll just paraphrase, “Recoil, you need industry. You’ve shown us we don’t need you.”


51 Responses to “The “Official” Word on the ‘Recoil’ Magazine Gaffe – Updated”

  1. Burton says:

    You hit the hammer on the head.

    The fact that they are not even aware of the severity of the situation or alarmed that some of the biggest hitters in the firearm community have ejected is a huge clue that they never knew what they were doing to begin with.

    • SSD says:

      agreed, one industry pro I respect felt slighted by this. As if the opinion of those in industry didn’t matter.

      • Glenno says:

        I hope he gets over it and moves on with his life, just as everyone will eventually get over this and move on. Oh, and H&K still won’t sell the MP7 to the wider community -which is their right.

        Funny how life isn’t as neat as some would like.

        • Burton says:

          Actually, this is a very clear cut example of individuals that have no business in the firearm community. Their ignorance, expressed both in the original article, the first “apology” that repeated exactly what the article said, Jerry Tsai’s second, politically correct apology, and now this shifty “apology” that threw H&K under the bus, is beyond unacceptable.

          If that’s the kind of people you want to go to bed with, knock yourself out.

          Glenno, the lackadaisical attitude you’re expressing is how Assault Weapon Bans get passed.

          • shooter says:

            The MP7 is not for sale to civilians in the first place, Although I agree with the sentiment expressed here.

  2. CrateKicker says:


  3. Matthew says:

    Tell him that only professional race car drivers should be allowed to own a Ford Mustang because they have “no sporting purpose.” I bet he’d suddenly sing a far different tune.

  4. Your spot on as always. To be fair about one thing H&K has always had odd views on the purposes of their firearms and who should own them. This comes from the German firearms lifestyle. I have no doubt they said something of that nature when asked about civilian sales. However at that point if I was editor I would have thanked them for their time and that article would have never seen the light of day. Why would I advertise for a company who cares so little about the shooting community.

    This whole debacle shows that you need people with time in this industry, who are shooters, who use the gear for a living etc to run a magazine. Not a car guy who happens to enjoy playing with cool guy toys. I’m sure Recoil will continue for a few more editions. The advertising is what I’ll be most interested to see as it swaps from Magpul, ITS and the like to Condor and other copyright skirting companies. Or Source will just jam more car advertisements to fill the space.

    • John says:

      I’m predicting a lot more articles highlighting SUV’s and Trucks featuring aftermarket gear from advertisers in upcoming issues.

      • Matty says:

        Dude did you see the fucking Jeep they had in there? It had a goddamn M2B and M240B! Who the fuck is going to put that on their jeep?!?!?! I mean I would if it was legal and this was Somalia. But shit son! They fucked up so bad on this issue.

  5. J says:

    I have no question that what was “quoted” in the article IS H&K’s position. HK has made it very clear both in the past and recently that they DO NOT care for the civilian firearms market. There is a reason why the “H&K: Because you suck, and we hate you” meme is so popular on the internet…because that is how H&K treats civilian firearm owners. That being said, H&K’s position doesn’t excuse the actions of Mr. Tsai and RECOIL magazine.

    • Claude says:

      Absolutely right. The only reason they’re in the US civilian market is because it’s too big commercially to ignore. H&K couldn’t give a crap less about the 2A.

    • BLACK says:

      He is posing on the cover with the f****** gun as if it WERE available to us “slimy handed civvies”. Why would he model as a civvie on the cover with a gun that he feels should never be in our “slimy hands”?? And that JEEP!! Oh lord dont ever let us get our slimy civvie asses in one of those…Oh but wait, it looks like a civilian rig owned by a private company?? He got in bed with us pretending to be one of us to make money…he doesnt give a shit, hes just “enthusiastic”… the next issues will feature a few more girls and a few more cars and slowly trickle away from the things we hold dear. Hasta Luego f**** Ill use my 8.99 plus tax on a box of ammo from now on.

  6. rogerrabbit says:

    Their situational awareness is laughable. Thier editor may have good intentions but he’s now proven that he’s a tool. If he had any common sense he’d man-up and resign. But it sounds like he wants to he such a big fan boy he can’t let go. Pretty pathetic story by HK,Tsai and Source Interlink. I did enjoy he mag, but will not support a rag that doesn’t listen to its readers…

    Recoil should be renamed “No Recoil” since. It’s probably going to turn into an airsofter rag once all the real shooters bail on it.

  7. creeky says:

    I have worked in the printing industry for 21 years, with the last 8 on the magazine side of things. To pretend advertisers are not dropping him, and that it does HURT is pure insanity. Ad revenues have been down since 2007, and circ. rates continue to struggle.

    I was excited to finally see a gun magazine with a contemporary design, though disappointed that it seemed to be a weak read. I had hoped their writing and articles would “mature”. It looks now like they will be unable to be around long enough to do that. Pity.

    On the bright side, this should show the other established mags where they need to pick up their game.

  8. Strike-Hold says:

    Spot on Eric. Frankly, if Mr. Galloway had even left off that final, condescending, patronising and insulting final “Quite honestly” paragraph he might even have managed to have the calmed some of the waters.

    But even then he still would have been guilty of wimping out by pointing the finger at HK, and of showing extreme arrogance in the face of the tidal wave of negative public opinion, and the departure of his readership and his advertisers.

    Still going to carry on? Good luck with that. As I’ve said before, you can’t run a successful business by pissing off your target market.

    In my opinion, the best thing he could do now would be to hire a new editor and switch to covering airsoft.

  9. stowbilly says:

    H&K’s statement contradicts that of both Tsai and Source Interlink. I’m getting myself another bowl of popcorn. This is getting interesting.

  10. MarkK says:

    Now it’s getting interesting.

  11. SteveG says:

    H&K’s response:

    “Some readers have misinterpreted a recent feature story in RECOIL magazine as a reflection of HK policy. Heckler & Koch has a long presence in the US civilian market and throughout that time has been an ardent and passionate supporter of the Second Amendment and the American civilian shooter. This will always be the case. The contents, opinions, and statements expressed in that feature story are those of the writer, not Heckler and Koch’s. Additionally, the writer and RECOIL magazine have issued a clarification and apology for the ill-chosen words used in the story.

    The HK MP7A1 4.6 mm Personal Defense Weapon mentioned in the story is a selective-fire product (capable of “full automatic” fire) and is currently restricted to military and law enforcement agencies by BATF. HK-USA has previously researched introducing similar commercial products, chambered in 4.6 mm, but it was determined that the final product would not have enough appeal or be legally feasible.

    — Heckler & Koch USA”

    What a mess.

    • saddened_its_come_to_this says:

      HK’s target market is fenced off (literally) from everyone who’s butt-hurt over the RECOIL DEBACLE.

      HK’s sales strategy will tell you all you need to know about their feelings about the civilian market.

      HK has NO INTEREST in the crying and whining that FN has to put up with from FN57 “enthusiasts” (people with more dollars than sense) who FINALLY figured out the meaning of the adage that “AMATEURS TALK HARDWARE, PROFESSIONALS TALK SOFTWARE.”

      I’m gonna miss RECOIL, and will mourn it the same way I mourn anything harmed by the careless and arbitrary application of force in any context.

  12. Eric says:

    Before this controversy, I have never looked at a Recoil magazine. Last night, I thumbed through one at the grocery store, and am a little puzzled how Jerry Tsai could make such stupid statements. While it would have been very easy for him to say that the “HK MP7A1 is currently not available for civilian sales” (PERIOD) and if he chose to, he could have expanded on that by listing the relevant federal laws as the barrier to normal civilian sales at your neighborhood gun store or mentioned that HK doesn’t have current plans for a semi-auto version or whatnot. He didn’t. He chose to editorialize it, then clarify his point several times in “apologies” in such a way that it is beyond the point of just stupidity and written in a manner that is deserved of all the criticism received. It would be surprising if they have any quality advertisers left.

    What led me to this conclusion? They did a feature “explaining” the NFA a few pages later.

    Now they (as a company) “blame” H&K? Blame them for what? Bad US laws? Source Interlink Media’s hiring practices?

    I’m sure that they’ll approach H&K in a month and offer cheap advertising to say they’re sorry and say how many ‘likes’ H&K will get on facebook. Classy.

  13. JustSayin says:

    Interesting that the publisher didn’t even bother to look up H&K’s official statement regarding the issue:

    “The contents, opinions, and statements expressed in that feature story are those of the writer, not Heckler and Koch’s.”

    -Heckler & Koch USA

  14. Brian says:

    After seeing that reply I determined that was the final nail in the coffin!! Let’s all agree we could care less about there fancy layout and nice pictures and be patient for a new visionary that will be more suited for the job! Won’t ever buy it again nor will I even open it at the stands to take a peek. It is tainted and bad Ju Ju.

  15. Glenno says:

    There were some other interesting articles in the magazine. The NFA article was good, if somewhat dumbed down. Perhaps they might refocus on meeting the interests of the wider readership for information of a more technical nature, rather than drooling over weapons that are never going o be available to the average shooter.

    • straps says:

      Recoil #4 presented two pretty good pieces of info: The infamous MP7 article, which expanded on the utility of that gun when I started with my OTHER purchase that bookstore trip, “No Easy Day,” and the Kel-Tec KSG, which I will allocate the coin for by the time the early-adopters have revealed its flaws. Not exactly the depth of a Small Arms review piece but just as (if not more) capable than many gun rags out there. Like the kydex article an issue or so back, the information is available from other sources, but rarely consolidated in a polished, professionally-presented, professionally-edited fashion. Whether RECOIL survives or not, this is an interruption of its maturing that I’m not sure was necessary.

  16. Will Brink says:

    Directly from the H&K FB page:

    “Some readers have misinterpreted a recent feature story in RECOIL magazine as a reflection of HK policy. Heckler & Koch has a long presence in the US civilian market and throughout that time has been an ardent and passionate supporter of the Second Amendment and the American civilian shooter. This will always be the case. The contents, opinions, and statements expressed in that feature story are those of the writer, not Heckler and Koch’s”

    Contrasted with what started above:

    “The opinions in the paragraph in question accurately reflected those of the manufacturer, and should have been reported as direct quotes.”

    If he literally took HKs position word for word (As they claim) that’s horrendously poor and lazy journalism at best, and straight up plagiarism at worst.

    Sorry, but who needs enemies with “friends” like that. I have been in the publishing biz in one form or another for two + decades, and I could have saved them this train wreck in one or two paragraphs at most, but it just went from bad to FUBAR with that position statement above from the publisher.

  17. Sal Palma says:

    I think the Peter Principal (as peter the organ) applies. Tsai is not just over his head, he’s out of his league. One rises to their own level of incompetence so they say.
    Another great idea falls pray to implementation. A shame!

  18. Eric B says:

    “I have not lost anyone as a result of this and do not expect to.”
    Joe Galloway, 2012

    Interesting, especially after seeing the list of advertisers who have backed out.

  19. Rogerrabbit says:

    If this mag had any common sense they would’ve dumped Tsai, admitted their err and talked about hiring some real shooters to do the writing in the future. This mag is done. We are now watching the slow demise of Recoil. Nothing is going to stop that now…

    They apparently forgot that the readers of this mag were people that stand up for what they believe in and don’t bend with the wind just because its the easy thing to do. There lies the difference between people that live an ethos and people that don’t!

  20. Sean says:

    Honestly the guy who made that starnt needs to be fired and disavowed. Then bring in someone like Eric Chris costa or a Larry bikers type who the community respects and know to “help out” this magazine. I like the mag I just hope it’s not killed by corporate morons like this guy.

    • Rogerrabbit says:

      They’re too busy trying to blame HK right now and vice versa to grow a brain and hire someone within the industry that people actually respect. Add that real world user experience as a Mil/LEO and the pics from the photogs that are already contributing and you’d have a legitimate mag. As of now I see no saving the ship with the publisher blaming HK and them backing Jerry.

    • BLACK says:

      Who is Larry Bikers??

  21. Dave the Rave says:

    I predict that both Tsai and the magazine will not last. Pro second amendment people, including myself, will probably not forgive something like this. We’re a loving bunch, but we’re also hardliners about our liberty.

    Field & Stream went through a similar situation years ago. Many pro second amendment people, who overlap with the hunting community, used to read it. Then prior to an election they endorsed some very anti-second amendment politicians because of “the environment”, and their readership dropped substantially.

  22. Dave the Rave says:

    I’m glad SSD brought this to my attention. I wasn’t aware of the comments or the fiasco. My decision will be to not support the magazine, and also to order some products from the companies that have withdrawn their advertising and association.

  23. Reverend says:

    “Heckler & Koch has a long presence in the US civilian market and throughout that time has been an ardent and passionate supporter of the Second Amendment and the American civilian shooter.”

    That’s a damnedable lie. If it were true? they would release their high cap mags for their Civy Pistol Carbines, and maybe not make them in goofy colors.

  24. I would be interested in seeing how many people who hopped on the lynch mob express will still secretly buy this magazine. That said who wants to take bets on how many more editions they get out before they collapse.

    • SSD says:

      I will be interested to see how they can continue. As I wrote above, who is going to cooperate with them? You can’t publish without content.

      • Eric as I posted on Facebook. They will get advertising that I am sure about. However the advertisers will likely be the people who skirt the patent line by slightly modifying things and filling the rest up with more tv show, and car ads, and other nick nacks. I might pick up the next issue for a laugh just to see. I am guessing they will get atleast one or two more out. They also might find ground with airsoft manufacturers for advertisement. I imagine there is a ton of airsofters who will read the magazine despite the Anti 2A sentiment.

        Thumbing through issue 3 shows a ton of car parts being advertised. I am actually interested in seeing what companies will continue to advertise after this. As for content I am sure JT or his other monicker of Recoil staff will appear throughout the magazine like it does now. I am also sure you will find some of the less then reputable gear and gun people trying to make a quick buck off the chance to write for a magazine.

        Only time will tell I guess.

    • Rogerrabbit says:

      I for one am not going to buy this rag again. Listen, it is a cool mag with nice pics and interesting articles. But really was there anything in there that we can’t live without. It made for a good coffee table mag, but there was nothing tactically related that I didn’t already know or have learned as an LEO. So its no loss for me to not buy it again.

      And it may or may not collapse, but what do those of us who are critical of it care? There are airsoft and liberal mags that exist and I simply pass them up. No big deal to me if some fanboy or kid wants to buy that crap.

      Bigger question is how can it continue to operate if manufacturer’s are going to stay away? After the back and forth with HK, I find it hard to believe any gun manufacturer’s are giong to be willing to risk the same negative press just to have an article written on one of their products.

  25. Kris says:

    What is H&K saying about all of this?

    • SSD says:

      I’ve spoken with Dave about that article. I’d say that his opinion is a bit different now that the issues raised in THIS article have come to light. It doesn’t matter if Jerry Tsai is the second coming, he shouldn’t be the principal writer as well as Editor of a gun magazine.

  26. Andrew says:

    Maybe he shouldn’t be, but this head hunt is out of control. I’ll be the first to say, what he said in that article was full retard. That said, this reaction is way out of proportion. Saying Tsai is anti 2A is completely off-base and ridiculous. I could go on, but I would just be re-writing the article of BB&C.

    And I would be interested to know in what way his opinion has changed, and for what reason. I’m always open to more information, maybe I am missing something.

  27. Skinny says:

    It’s more than worrisome that this type of anti-gun indoctrination is rearing its ugly head in a gun publication. Mr. Tsai doesn’t have the faintest clue that he’s been corrupted by the People’s Republic of Kalifornistan. Generations lost to that black-hole of a liberal nanny state.