CULTURE

Why Do You Smoke Weed LIVE on Social Media?

Toking up on social media -- yay or nay?
Toking up on social media -- yay or nay?

Log in to social media on any given day and you will undoubtedly bear witness to someone sitting on a couch in their living room, looking a bit disheveled – like they just woke up – smoking marijuana LIVE on Facebook. 

On occasion, these broadcasts from the bong are accompanied by a rant – perhaps a health complaint or legal issue – but more often than not it’s just a regular person, sometimes in a pair of unflattering pajamas or shirtless, taking hits from a dab rig, presumably in hopes that someone, anyone out there will be watching when they exhale. 

But this is weird, isn’t it? Why would anyone care to sit around getting high for an invisible audience?

Dabbing for Digital Unity

A cannabis fan by the name of Melanie told us that she noticed social media tokers for the first time right after Colorado legalized for recreational use. 

“It struck me as a ceremonial ‘fuck you’ to the feds, because they could do it on camera, legally,” she said. 

For some, though, smoking LIVE on social platforms is more about passing the time; just an activity they engage in to bring others together through weed. 

“I do it when I’m bored or alone but want to smoke with people!” Zain, a 35-year-old from San Diego, told The Bluntness

“Nothing beats interacting with friends, and if they smoke it’s one big Sesh! I feel like I’m solving others’ boredom one puff at a time!” 

Okay, fair enough. But is it all about unity?

Stoned and Famous?

Most people we asked are of the opinion that people going LIVE with the Loud are trying to get famous. 

“I assume it's to build some sort of following,” Dylan, a 38-year-old collision repair tech from Pennsylvania, told The Bluntness

But a following for what? Social media tokers aren’t doing anything interesting. It’s not like they are wailing on a guitar or transmitting comedic superpowers. 

No, they are just consuming cannabis alone in a room that happens to have an internet connection. No discernible talent necessary. 

Anyone with thumbs and a set of lungs can do it. Sure, it could be argued that it takes a real gift to inhale several dab hits and stay coherent enough to speak to three adoring fans, but to call it a talent, well, that would be a stretch. 

“Everybody thinks they're the center of the world and should be some big star,” Reddit commenter Dr. Satan420247 tells us. “You can’t watch anything on YouTube anymore because of these people. They all see themselves as reality TV stars.”

For better or worse, we live in a day and age where it doesn’t take talent to achieve fame. Social media opened the floodgates years ago and out came every run-of-the-mill, attention-starved average joe who thought they were deserving of their 15-minutes. 

The cannabis community was no exception. 

Too Much Free Time?

But while some of them at least had something to offer in the realm of education and advocacy, others just had a lot of free time. 

These are the folks who threw caution to the wind, pressed the little red button on their trusty cell phones and fired up in pursuit of fans. And, in some cases, this approach was wildly successful. 

Dabbing Granny, a stoner influencer with around 1.4 million followers on Instagram and Facebook, is a prime example. 

She’s become a social media sensation for doing party tricks.  We reached out to this public figure (real name Gail Olson) to learn more about what she is trying to accomplish by smoking LIVE. 

Although she agreed to answer our questions, she never responded to our emails. We guess she got too high, slipped off for a dab nap and forgot. No problem, DG, that happens. 

So, we took a more clinical approach. We called on Dr. Aaron Weiner, licensed psychologist, to get his thoughts. He believes this phenomenon says more about the viewers than it does the stars of the show. 

“Perhaps the more relevant question is: why do people choose to spend their time watching someone else complain and smoke weed on Facebook Live?” Dr. Weiner noted. “If there wasn't an audience, I don't think there would be a show.”

Sure, people who smoke weed LIVE on social media might be narcissistic, arrogant or have an unrealistic pipe dream of high fame, but how bored is stoned society if millions are watching others toke up every day? “I’ll never understand it,” 42-year-old Brent from Louisville, Kentucky told us. 

Some argue that it is akin to spending hours watching gamers showcase their skills and strategies – something else we don’t understand, but okay. “Most people want to be cool, and are following other people who influence their hobbies,” Seth from Santa Rosa, California told us. 

But smoking marijuana isn’t a hobby, is it? For millions, it’s medicine. For millions more, it’s purely recreational. Holy hell, smoking weed really is a hobby. 

The Allure of Social Media Tokers

Still, bright-eyed cannabis connoisseurs shouldn’t require a digital idol to help further their pothead pursuits. Again, the consumption of marijuana isn’t comparable to, say, playing a musical instrument or any other activity that requires hours of practice to rise from the ranks of an amateur and become a professional. 

Marijuana consumers, even the most dedicated of the breed, don’t (at least they shouldn’t) need inspiration to get buzzed up; our existence in this wild world already gives us plenty of reasons to stay stoned. So why in the heck are we so drawn to people who light up LIVE?

In the case of so-called cannabis influencers like Dabbing Granny, it appears to be for mostly novelty purposes. Many are seemingly tuned in to marvel over how much she can consume without going catatonic. 

“Dabbing Granny can smoke her ass off,” one Facebook commenter wrote. Others, well, they just like to see what kind of elaborate paraphernalia she’s going to use next. 

Weirdly enough, there are a select few, though, who only show up to fawn over her PJs and whatever tune she chooses as a soundscape. 

In the end, we suppose the allure of the social media toker is all about how the individual defines entertainment and how they choose to spend their day. 

Perhaps this trend will start to fade away as legalization takes hold across more of the nation in the coming years. For now, we suppose those who don’t enjoy it can always opt not to tune in. 

Still, is it too much to ask the digital dabbers to put on some clothes first?

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