Audio-visual (AV) media have always had a great influence on the general public. Exposing the viewing public to the ideas, concepts, and themes shown through this medium, audiences are bound to familiarize themselves. This makes AV media a great avenue for educating the public about a lot of things, such as cannabis and the culture surrounding it.

With the potential this medium has to offer to the marijuana community, more and more content are being produced and published. Plus, there is a wide variety of platforms for viewers to consume such content, giving them wide accessibility. Read on to know more about the use of this medium.

Cannabis Culture Representation

The Need for Representation

First, let’s talk about the need for cannabis culture representation in a medium that is consumed by many. For decades, marijuana has been stigmatized not only by individuals but by the government itself. Just take a look at the current Controlled Substances Act and you will see that the plant is still treated as dangerous without currently accepted medical uses. This is despite having various research showing the medicinal potential of marijuana.

This criminalization of the plant has shown various political and socioeconomic impacts, starting with racial disparities in implementing marijuana laws. These contents can help shed light on the oppression and struggles of various communities such as African Americans and Latin Americans in relation to marijuana, a problem that persists until today.

Moreover, the representation of cannabis culture can show the mainstream public that marijuana consumption is not entirely a bad thing, especially as it is now seen by medical professionals and researchers as a highly medicinal plant. It can also open conversations about safety use and access.

Medical marijuana programs across the country offer licenses so that patients with chronic and debilitating conditions or symptoms can gain access to marijuana as a treatment aid. AV media can help disseminate the good news for people who may be qualified for it. Moreover, this can help enlighten people who hold misconceptions about this plant.

One of the questions for many is this: Why audio-visual media? The reason for the push to use this medium as a way to boost the representation of cannabis culture in the media is because it is preferred by many. A lot of people today want relaxation and entertainment options that can stimulate their senses, and AV media is precisely the way to satisfy this.

Media Platforms for Cannabis Culture Representation

Perhaps another reason people prefer AV media is that they have a lot of options on how they can consume it. These choices let them adjust their viewing habits according to their schedules, giving them the ultimate personalized viewing experience, as opposed to program-based offerings such as television channels. Here are some of the most popular platforms for AV media featuring marijuana culture representation.

  • Streaming Services

One of the most popular choices is streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+. These on-demand services let viewers pull up the content they want to consume when they want it. The moment they need to take their attention away from it, they can simply press pause and attend to whatever they need to do. When they have the time, these services will serve them the content right where they stopped.

Another reason why these services are so popular is that they carry an extremely wide catalog of titles. Take Netflix for example. This platform has thousands of films and serial shows from various countries and genres. The company also produces original content.

This kind of availability and accessibility helps people explore their options. With regards to educating themselves about marijuana, interested individuals can navigate toward the content they want to consume, while those who are not may simply stumble upon cannabis-related content.

  • Social Media Videos

Social media sites are some of the most successful ones in this day and age. In fact, almost everyone has at least one social media account like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok. Some even have thousands of connections on their accounts.

Usually, these are used to post photos and videos of an extremely extensive range of topics. With millions of users worldwide, these platforms can definitely be considered viral content-making machines.

Imagine one educational marijuana-related video goes viral. It will be able to reach thousands upon thousands of users not only within the US but across the globe. This can help expose more and more people, especially those who view cannabis negatively. Such content can help them reconsider their view about marijuana.

Aside from the potential to go viral, social media platforms can offer a safe space for individuals who consume marijuana for recreational or medical purposes. They can share knowledge, recommendations, and ideas through groups and pages. Let’s say an individual interested to learn about the plant joins these communities. They already have a treasure trove of resources they can use to learn more.

  • Video Games

Another AV platform that offers an extremely immersive and interactive experience is video games. These contents require the involvement of consumers, especially as they need to control the characters and make decisions. Plus, they have interesting storylines, challenging missions, and a general sense of engaging fun.

While some games may be focused on other things such as the fantastic plot or relatable characters, some games featuring cannabis can help enlighten players about the plant. Some even completely focus on growing and selling the plant, stimulating the entrepreneurial sides of gamers.

Audio Visual Media that Showed Cannabis Culture

The popularity of these platforms, as well as the interest surrounding marijuana, has resulted in a lot of AV content tackling marijuana. If you are interested in knowing what these can offer to the overall conversation about culture, here are some of the things you should check out.

  • Dude

Let’s start with films. Dude is an original Netflix movie that follows a group of high school seniors on the brink of graduating. This movie depicts messages of diversity and empowerment as viewers follow the group’s adventures and misadventures. It covers a lot of relatable topics for young adults, especially as it is a coming-of-age story.

Marijuana is heavily featured in the film. In fact, one of the group’s most beloved treasures is a bong shaped like Donkey Kong, which is shown in many moments throughout the movie. Netflix also carries other original films that prominently feature the plant including Someone Great.

  • Cooking on High

For those who love reality shows and cannabis, this cooking competition series will definitely be a great watch. It features guest chefs and professional cooks who are tasked to make various marijuana-infused dishes. One great thing about this show is that it features a “Strain of the Day,” introduced by comedian and cannabis activist Ngaio Bealum. Bealum also explains some important details about cooking with the plant.

  • The Good Place

This show may not be strictly focused on cannabis, but it features a character whose love for the plant has led them to theorize a crazy, yet 925 accurate concept of the afterlife – at least in the show. This character is Doug Forcett, who was guessed that the afterlife is made up of The Good Place and The Bad Place. He did not appear earlier in the show but was celebrated as a legendary human for his afterlife theory.

  • Far Cry 3

When it comes to games, PC is touted as the best platform, according to people who believe that PC master race. One interesting appearance of marijuana in video games is in Far Cry 3, in which the main character had to burn a field full of the plant. Gamers who have played this title know that you can simply stay back and watch the field burn or you can get close enough to “feel” the effects of cannabis.

Those who completely have no experience consuming cannabis can have an idea of how it can affect people. While the plant can have varying effects on different people, the game accurately depicts the effects of high-THC plants. After getting close to the smoking field, the character will have impaired faculties that make completing the mission much more difficult.

Those who want to explore cannabis themes in gaming can also check out the Grand Theft Auto franchise. For a more marijuana-focused PC game, iGrow Game lets you experience the challenges of cultivating the plant.

  • Weed Firm

For mobile gamers, the options are also vast and varied. Weed Firm is one of the most fun and challenging options. This takes you on a ride with the main character who is selling buds out of his apartment. You can grow different strains of cannabis, manage your home-made growing facility, and earn some money. You can even culture some magic mushrooms and interact with intergalactic beings. If you want to explore other mobile games, another good option is Bud Farm: Grass Roots.

What to Expect from Audio-Visual Media in the Future

With the variety of AV media options out there, you definitely have a lot of content to go through, which the general public can also benefit from. However, you can expect gradual changes in the availability and accessibility of marijuana-related content in the future, especially with the rapid changes in cannabis laws across the US. Here’s what the future could have in store for cannabis consumers and enthusiasts.

  • More Cannabis Content

Of course, one of the things you can expect is the creation of more cannabis-related content, not only in audio-visual form but also in music and other forms of art. This is good news for the cannabis community as it can shed more light on the culture and science involving the plant. Plus, it means more contents for marijuana lovers to consume.

Keep in mind that while there are a lot of contents for you to consume today, the future can bring much more shows, films, and games you can share with your friends and family. Additionally, they can tackle other aspects of the culture that has not been addressed adequately before.

  • Deeper Look into the Culture

With the expected boost in the number of contents available for consumers, you can also anticipate an elevation in how the topic is addressed. Today, discourse about culture and community remains to be at an introductory level. Most of them aim to familiarize the public with marijuana and its effects, potentials, and safe use.

In the future, we may see a deeper discussion of the culture. With a more familiar public, AV media could tackle these topics more seriously.

  • More Mainstream Exposure

Another thing to expect from this medium in the future is that mainstream platforms would depict this plant, its culture, and community more openly. Today, many states still screen the exposure of cannabis on television and radio, with some states even prohibiting cannabis and CBD advertisements.

The increasingly progressive legislation across the country can lead to the removal of such prohibitions, allowing the more free and open discussion of the plant in the airwaves.

  • Virtual Events

The current public health situation has limited the community from launching cannabis events. According to experts, it may take a while for the world to recover, and even when this is over, we will be living in a so-called “new normal.”

For the cannabis industry, another audio-visual opportunity is to launch cannabis events virtually. This is a safe and viable option as of the moment, as it minimizes risks of exposure. Plus, these still lets participants learn, explore, and network. The technology surrounding virtual events are also changing, so improvements in the way these are held can be expected, as well.

Cannabis Culture Representation

The Bottom Line

Audio-visual form as a medium is generally a great platform for the community to educate, celebrate, and perform marijuana culture. The prevalence of marijuana in these media combined with the clamor for such contents can definitely serve as a good sign for the industry. While this is not to say that the mainstream media should be dominated by marijuana contents, having more of it is certainly a great development and a welcome one.

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