When Canada formally legalized marijuana on Oct. 17, officials foresaw a wave of international travelers without a safe place to dispose of the remains of their stash. Forward-thinking staff at Toronto’s Pearson Airport offered international travelers a lined trash can within which to abandon excess cannabis flower and edibles en route to almost anywhere, aka areas that have yet to legalize adult cannabis use and possession. Naturally the temporal absurdity of the provided solution captured the digital zeitgeist via a Reddit post titled “Pearson International installed a ‘free weed’ bin.” As Gizmodo reports, Robin Smith, a spokesperson for the Greater Toronto Airport Authority, clarified the bins’ purpose. “ ‘Free weed’ is resoundingly incorrect, and I think that’s putting it mildly,” Smith wrote via email. “Once something goes into the container, it doesn’t come out.” Smith further noted that the permanent bins will allow for safe disposal of cannabis but will not facilitate any attempts at retrieval.
In the brand-new Poynter article “In marijuana journalism boom, Cannabis Wire keeps its public health mission,” David Beard examines the expanded coverage model of cannabis journalism website Cannabis Wire. Rather than capitalizing on the cannabis investment boom by pivoting away from health reporting toward advertorial, the site has expanded smartly with a grant from Civil, by hiring a new editor and three new reporters while striving to maintain their focus on reporting for the good of public health before consideration of profit. As Beard notes, “[Cannabis Wire] writes accountability stories for a $6 billion industry that sees its sector swelling to $50 billion. The site doesn’t shift its gaze from uncomfortable issues such as racial disparities in marijuana profits and punishment.” Poynter’s reportage goes on to quote Cannabis Wire cofounder Nushin Rashidian, “There’s a lot of cannabis journalism happening. I feel like there is something to be said for trying really hard to document a really significant moment.”