Cannabis has been now made legal in 23 states in the US. In some states, like Colorado, it’s legal for both recreational and medicinal purposes.
Authorised cannabis businesses in these states are entirely legal. So they say they were left puzzled in recent weeks, when their Facebook pages were suddenly shut down. Reports suggest that at least a dozen cannabis businesses across six US states have had their Facebook pages disabled in the past few weeks.
One such company is Mary’s Medicinals, a cannabis products manufacturer based in Denver, Colorado – the first US state to legalise cannabis. It specialises in marijuana skin patches, supplements and topical gels. Business development manager Graham Sorkin said the business’ Facebook page was shut down at the end of January – and he told us that he’s confused, as Mary’s Medicinals is an authorised marijuana dealer.
“Nobody at Facebook had noticed our page or flagged it for being something that potentially violates their policies…we’re licensed by the state of Colorado and state of Washington to make these products,” he said.
So what’s the logic behind the move? Well, although the drug may be legal in some places, it’s still very much illegal for others. That creates a tough dilemma for a social network like Facebook, which is used by people all over the world. Facebook’s “Community Standards”, which users agree to maintain when they sign up, tend to take one standard global position on issues like the promotion of drugs.