Are cannabis companies about to pay the price for Facebook’s fuckups?
We’ve all seen the memes of Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook, sitting before the United States Senate recently, trying his hardest to appear like an Earthling while being forced to try to teach Betamax-using, generation-gapped-as-fuck politicians how the internet actually works and how the Russians may have used it to stir up our last national election.
See, these Russian bots were buying up ad space on Facebook in 2016 and using the popular social media platform to spread half-baked memes to fan the flames of discontent in American voters. But that’s not all.
Zuckerberg was also forced to answer questions about the sleazy data mining firm, Cambridge Analytica, who used bullshit Facebook polls and apps to pilfer the personal information of up to 85 MILLION Facebook users.
He apologized, of course. He also vowed to employ 5,000 new human Earthling laborers to review questionable advertising requests, and handle appeals of ad rejections. Additionally, he said that Facebook was taking steps to limit the number of ads displayed on a user’s timeline, regardless of their source.
So, right off the bat, if you are the owner of a cannabis-related company and you’re watching this testimony, you’ve got to be wondering what that means for Facebook as a viable advertising platform in the future. But then it got even worse.
West Virginia Congressman Rep. David McKinley got his turn to question the odd creature that sat before him and he used that time to pull up several quasi-legal Canadian pharmaceutical ads that offered shipping to the U.S.
Rep. McKinley’s diversion into the topic of “illegal drug ads” on Facebook does not bode well for cannabis, which has never been very welcome on the social media behemoth.
Here at Beard Bros. Pharms, we have already felt the effects of the discrimination that cannabis-related companies have coming their way when they try to reach their audience on Facebook.
After launching our new online store this week, we tried to promote it with this rather innocent image screengrabbed from our site @ www.BeardBrosPharms.com
The response from Facebook was this canned reply
Note that our website does not sell cannabis, and certainly not any “illegal drugs”.
We sell hats (and more awesome items coming soon)!
It is an advocacy page.
Now, Facebook ads do allow for “advocacy”, as long as you are advocating along Zuckerberg’s new force-fed ideology. In other words, if you have an ad about a cannabis rehabilitation center, you’re all good. But an ad about hats is apparently the devil’s work.
To be fair though, Facebook has some work to do when it comes to race as well…yikes…
The list of subjects banned under Facebook advertising policies is long…
… but we live in a time when cannabis is being legalized recreationally state-by-state, year-by-year, coast-to-coast. We’ve got mainstream media news anchors leading off segments with their own 4/20 stories. But still, social media continues to discriminate against one of the strongest social movements of our time.
As Cannabis.net reports, Zuckerberg will be hauled back up to Capitol Hill and he will be asked by these ancient-ass politicians what he has done to protect their grandbabies from Russians and drugs, and he and his thralls of lawyers will damn sure have some analytical data to show that the Canadian boner pills and the big bad marijuana have been hamstrung.
Of course, with Trump sending out signals (distractions?) that he may loosen cannabis laws, and with forward-thinking members of the House and Senate beginning to craft legislation to reschedule cannabis at the Federal level, perhaps Facebook will look the other way when it comes to weed.
So far, however, our inability to tell our Friends List about our hats is a bit discouraging.
If Facebook follows the disturbing pot-page-purge that has happened at YouTube over the past 6-12 months, cannabis-related business pages might be in for a wild ride for the next 6-12.
In the meantime, if you use Facebook you can do your part by supporting as many cannabis pages as you can. Like, Share, Comment on their posts and together we can disrupt the bots and the system.
Oh, and if you want to check out some badass hats … CLICK HERE
Thanks for your support, buds!