I think it's an attempt at intimidation. I wonder if any of those whose addresses were published are immediate family members of federal officials or employees, and covered by 18 USC Section 119, which prohibits publishing home addresses for intimidation. Or if the internet publication of home addresses of gun owners can be considered cyber stalking, cyber-bullying, harassment or invasion of privacy under state laws? Just because the information is available under a FOIA request, does that mean it can be publicly disseminated? I'm sure they checked with their lawyers and felt like they were on safe ground, but I hope somebody sues them.This incident reminds me of the mailings that went out last spring showing the names and addresses of residents in one's neighborhood and whether they'd voted in recent elections. At the time, I called it "incredibly creepy":
This is an effort to shame and pressure people about voting, and it is truly despicable. Your vote is private, you have a right not to vote, and anyone who tries to shame and harass you about it is violating your privacy, and the assumption that I will become active in shaming and pressuring my neighbors is repugnant.In a second post on that topic, a commenter, The Drill SGT, pointed to some social science research on the effectiveness of manipulating social pressure with this sort of information about what neighbors are doing. Apparently, if this sort of thing works, they'll be plenty more of it.