The benefits of online cannabis events

Published Nov 9, 2020 01:00 p.m. ET
iStock / Damir Khabirov

The fast spread of the coronavirus has shaken up the entire world, changing how business is conducted and bringing forward public health measures that have paused most large gatherings that we look forward to each year. Cannabis events coordinators didn’t take long to spring into action once they realized how long the struggle could go on, and from there, the only viable option that would allow them to continue to bring various communities together was online platforms.

In the beginning, most online weed events were relatively basic, as this type of technology hadn’t been thoroughly tested on such a grand scale. Still, they made the best of it anyway while working towards a more user-friendly, bug-free, immersive experience for the future. Now that we’re several long, arduous months into the pandemic, an online cannabis conference looks much different than before, and these types of weed events are now boasting about the benefits of attending one via the internet.

1. Almost anyone can attend

Cannabis events, for the most part, have stuck to focusing on local individuals who want to view what they have to offer, from an exciting competition of skill or an informational promotion of hot new products that are hitting the market. However, now these gatherings have been moved online. Most are opening up ticket sales and attendance to individuals and companies that may be located anywhere in the world. This enhances opportunities for consumers, investors, and businesses who want to get noticed.

2. No need to dress up

Weed events aren’t exactly known for requiring elegant dress. Some of the consumer-focused shows encourage the exact opposite, with some showing up in a fancy costume or sporting their favourite Cheech and Chong tee. Still, whether you’re used to dressing up or dressing down, you’ll no longer have to worry too much about what you look like. In most cases, you’ll be able to attend in your PJs if that’s what your heart desires, and that adds a level of comfort that cannot be defeated with more traditional in-person events.

3. You can have so much fun

It might not sound exhilarating to spend the day inside of your house where you’ve likely already spent the majority of your time for the last several months while staring at a computer screen rather than interacting, conversing, and reuniting with old friends. Still, online platforms offer an incredibly unique experience that can be a whole lot of fun. Some will even let you build your avatar so that you can wander around and network in the virtual world, essentially recreating the old way of doing things, only it’s digital. In contrast, others offer interactive sessions with leading experts around the world, and it’s impressive.

4. It’s easy to record information to reference later

When you attend cannabis events in person, it’s not uncommon to get lost in a conversation and miss things along the way and then by the time you get home and try to remember something you’ve learned. Still, you have nothing material to reference to refresh your memory. Luckily, this is a problem that online weed events have fixed because now that everything is streamed on a computer, you can either go back and watch big talks long after the show is over, or record each session as you go through to build your library to look back on.

5. You can get high the whole way through

Most countries that have implemented some form of legalization still bar cannabis consumption in enclosed public spaces and businesses. While most weed events will offer a relatively accessible smoking area, you can’t puff away on your favourite green while participating. You pretty much always have to leave the building entirely. However, with virtual gatherings, you never have to leave the comfort of your home, which means that you can toke, eat, and do pretty much whatever you want all while taking in the information you came for, and it certainly makes for a more laid back experience.

Are virtual weed events the way of the future?

This past year we’ve seen everything from consumer-focused events like the Cannabis Cup, to industry specialized cannabis conferences move online to stay connected with the rest of the world. For the most part, this change has been graciously accepted and appreciated, but it isn’t the ideal answer for every situation. As COVID-19 becomes little more than a distant memory, things will likely return to normal for most cannabis events, with one big difference. Technology is likely to play a more integral role.

Weed events will never be the same again. Still, the creativity and technology that will arise from this endeavour are likely to help the cannabis industry and consumers to stay far more connected than ever before in the future.

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