Ottawa-based Shopify bans the sale of some firearms, accessories

Shopify CEO Tobi Lütke.

Shopify is banning the sale of some firearms and their related parts through its platform.

A policy update that the Ottawa-based e-commerce firm quietly posted this week shows Shopify merchants can no longer use the platform to sell automatic firearms that have not been rendered inoperable and semi-automatic firearms that have the capacity to accept a detachable magazine.

Also off-limits are a handful of gun parts and accessories including grenade and rocket launchers, magazines capable of accepting more than 10 rounds and flash and sound suppressors.

Shopify did not say what prompted the ban in a statement to The Canadian Press, but says it may refine its policies further as the company grows.

However, in a blog post about free speech and policy changes, Shopify CEO Tobi Lütke says he finds the legislative process no match for the realities of the internet and as a result, the company has had to make its own decisions on a range of issues.

He says the company has had to accept that neutrality is not possible because it wants to allow all kinds of products to be sold on the platform, including ones it disagrees with, but does not want to make space for items that can harm.