What a Looming Patent War Could Mean for the Future of America's Marijuana Industry

There is growing concern in the American marijuana industry “about what may happen on the intellectual property frontier if and when legalization spreads across the country,” Greg Walters writes at VICE in a story out today. In recent years, there's been an explosion in new strains with wacky names, and growers are looking to patent their strains just like one might for a new type of apple or rose. If or when America decriminalizes pot, our intellectual property laws could clash with the pot business boom to create one hell of a legal mess, very quickly.

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On 4/20 day, Canada vows to legalize weed within one year

Canada's Health Minister Jane Philpott (hehe pot pott get it pot) said today that Canada now has a date for decriminalizing pot: Spring, 2017. The announcement was made on 4/20 Day, significant to cannabis users for reasons nobody can remember, wonder why.

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Sensual photos of teens smoking marijuana, taken for the U.S. government in 1973

These striking shots of two young women chilling out with some herb while relaxing sur l'herbe are official federal government photographs, captured in 1973 by a photographer on assignment for the newly formed EPA.

There is a hidden knife in this marijuana leaf pendant

Feeling threatened at the Cannabis Cup? Unsheathe this half-inch blade, secreted in a marijuana leaf pendant!

I'm surprised by the number of marijuana themed knives available. Perhaps I should not be, it can be tough staying mellow.

Evidently the pendant knife is quite dull, perhaps armed marijuana enthusiasts open a lot of envelopes!

Fantasy Master FM-642 Hidden Neck Knife with Marijuana Zinc Alloy Emblem Handle via Amazon Read the rest

Wikileaf makes finding the best weed, at the best prices, easy

Boing Boing is proud to welcome Wikileaf.com as as sponsor.

When you want to book a flight or a hotel online, if you're bargain-conscious you probably don't go directly to each airline or hotel's direct website, but rather shop on price comparison websites to see who's offering the best rate for what you want. Wikileaf.com applies this same familiar concept to legal and medical cannabis.

Wikileaf is the first price comparison website of its kind, empowering marijuana consumers to name their preferred price for pot--then watch as recreational and/or medical dispensaries compete for their bud business.

The website operates as a “reverse auction” model for weed. You, the consumer, set the price you intend to spend. Dispensaries in your area offer their best deal (in grams) to match what you're willing to spend.

As cannabis laws and regulations ease throughout the U.S., exuberant ganja-preneurs are opening dispensaries faster than ever. All the competition may be good for the market, but it creates a lot of noise for cannabis connoisseurs who just want really high-quality herb at the best possible price.

Cruise along the urban streets of Denver, Seattle, Portland, and other weed-friendly American cities, and you’ll notice dispensaries and cannabis shops popping up faster than Starbucks spots. There is fierce competition between dispensaries, and that incentive to compete for your business grows as more shops enter the market.

“The problem for the consumer is that there is no transparency in pricing,” says Dan Nelson, CEO of Wikileaf.

“What you can get for $40 at one shop might get you nearly double that amount in another shop, depending on the dispensaries current inventory levels.”

That the problem Wikileaf is trying to solve for savvy cannabis shoppers. Read the rest

On the grave dangers of smoking marijuana

The pot smoking scene from “Walk Hard - The Dewey Cox Story” never stops being funny. 'Specially after smoking pot.

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Facebook shutting legal weed pages

Reminder: even if cannabis is now legal in 23 states, including recreationally in some, Facebook does not want you posting about it on its website. The BBC reports on its recent crackdown on accounts and pages set up by legal dispensaries and weedy websites.

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.

When BBC Trending contacted Facebook, they issued this official statement: "In order to maintain a safe environment on Facebook, we have Community Standards that describe what is and is not allowed on the service. Anyone can report content to us if they think it violates our standards. Our teams review these reports rapidly and will remove the content if there is a violation."

The wave of shut-downs was noticed last week, reports NBC News.

In New Jersey, where medical marijuana is legal, three of the state's five dispensaries, or Alternative Treatment Centers (ATCs), they're called, had their Facebook pages shut down last week. Breakwater Alternative Treatment Center, Compassionate Sciences Alternative Treatment Center (CSATC) and Garden State Dispensary all received messages from Facebook stating their pages had been "unpublished" because content posted on their pages "doesn't follow the Facebook Terms."

The delicious part is, of course, inconsistent enforcement: it appears that weed sellers are grassing one another up to Facebook. Read the rest

Legal pot industry already bigger than Cheeto industry

Americans spent more last year on legal marijuana than they did on Cheetos, Doritos and Funyuns combined. The Denver Post reports that the $5.4 billion total includes medical and recreational sales.

But as they also note, plenty of challenges to the industry remain. First and foremost is the vast and growing disconnect between federal policy, under which marijuana is 100 percent illegal, and laws in the states that have legalized it. Because of federal restrictions, marijuana businesses don't have access to banks. They can't take advantage of the tax breaks other industries enjoy. The threat of raids by overzealous drug cops is present, despite congressional efforts to curtail these actions.

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Man attempts to trade fake weed for young boy's fish

A Chatham-Kent, Ontario man allegedly attempted to buy a 12-year-old boy's fish with fake marijuana. When the boy smartly protested about the unfair deal, the man reportedly hit him in the head. And now, the man is facing an assault charge. From CBC:

The boy went to the man's house Saturday for a planned meeting where the boy was going to sell the man a fish. The man tried to pay for the fish with a bag of what he claimed to be weed, but the boy realized it was actually a bag of dried spices.

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Smugglers disguise marijuana as carrots

On Sunday, the US border patrol in Pharr, Texas seized 2,500 tons of marijuana stuffed into faux carrots mixed in with real vegetables coming from Mexico. In November, agents there found bricks of marijuana and cocaine in bags of fresh carrots, but based on the image below from the US Customs & Border Protection's Instagram feed, it seems those smugglers weren't as creative with the packaging. Not that it helped this time.

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How to cook a marijuana marinated turkey

Happy Danksgiving!

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Menorah bong makes Hanukkah a "high holiday"

The festival of lights, indeed. (Thanks, Jordan Kurland!)

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Snoop Dogg now slangin dope

Rapper and proud pothead Snoop Dogg is launching a line of cannabis products, called Leafs By Snoop.

"It's a true blessing that I can share the products I love so much with y'all today," Mr. Dogg said. "From the flower, to the concentrates, and edibles - it's all hand-picked by yours truly so you know it's the hottest product out there. It's the real deal and you gotta get out to Colorado to try it first!"

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Mexico just took a huge step toward legalizing marijuana

Mexico's supreme court today ruled that some parts of the country’s health law are not valid, and that growing, possessing, or using marijuana for recreational purposes is perfectly legal under existing Mexican law.

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Federal agents seize 30,000 marijuana plants on Menominee Native American tribal land

DEA agents descended on Menominee County in Wisconsin last Friday, to destroy what the tribal authorities say was an industrial hemp crop. The DEA says it was “high-grade marijuana,” and they're not apologizing. The chairman of the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin says the DEA had no right to the cannabis, and the DEA boasts of seizing some 30,000 plants in all.

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The real cause of “Runner's High” may surprise you. It'll surprise you less if you smoke pot.

Endorphins may have been getting too much credit for “runner's high,” that euphoric lift we get when we exercise intensely. Read the rest

Stoned man who called 911 found surrounded by junk food

Police responding to a 911 call turned up at an the Austintown, Ohio home to find the 22-year-old man who called for emergency help "laying on the floor, in the fetal position... surrounded by a plethora of Doritos, Pepperidge Farm Goldfish, and Chips Ahoy cookies."

According to the police report, the fellow said he “smoked too much weed” and was “too high and could not feel his hands."

"Too High" Man Surrounded By Snacks" (Smoking Gun) Read the rest

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