In the last couple of weeks, it has become clearer than ever that the long reaching arms of social media companies have the power to control the way we express ourselves to the public as well as the niche communities we operate in. The chaos on Capitol Hill showed us that no one is exempt from being banned indefinitely, from former Presidents of the United States to everyday keyboard warriors, failure to comply with the terms of service can lead to the same fate.
Though the phenomenon of being banned from social media platforms is becoming more mainstream due to recent events, this is something that has been a reality for the cannabis community for several years now. Many are arguing that these recent bans are an infringement of or inalienable rights to free speech. The fact of the matter is that these social media corporations are private companies and they have the freedom to moderate the content on their platforms however they find fit.
Even though this is nothing new for many cannabis industry veterans, these recent events have resurrected feelings of disdain for the social media giants. This can be difficult for some to understand since now cannabis is fairly deregulated across multiple states nationwide. However, the classic means of marketing implemented by many players in the industry, utilizing social media platforms, served as one of a few ways to promote themselves to masses. And now, after gaining hundreds of thousands of organic followers, it is not uncommon for these companies to suddenly be banned forever from the platform. This completely nullifies the efforts of so many, only trying to help their brand become known.
Despite all the heartache caused by the powers at be of these social media giants, it is quite clear that we are on the brink of widespread cannabis reform. There is always the potential of federal legalization looming in the background. The day that cannabis is accepted federally is the day producers in the industry can rest assured their efforts in reaching their audience is safe.