The straight truth: The media continues to get it wrong about the legalization of Thai cannabis

On Thursday, when Rittipong “Beer” Dachkul became the first Highland Cafe customer to buy hardy cannabis, a reporter covering the moment saw things very differently.

After observing the Rittpong purchase, Nicholas Kumanov tweeted earnestly at a Deutsche Welle Report, “The cannabis for sale is low potency.This would be news not only for Ritibong, who came out with a strong Indica bloodline called LSD-25But to the man who sold it to him without a prescription.

Absolutely not, hahahaha,” said Aaron Avery, co-founder of Highland. Most of them were high strains of THC grown here by locals. The efficacy has been well verified, so it must be because people were just misled and assumed. There is a lot of misinformation, and it needs to be clarified.”

With this falsehood, Kumanov joined the ranks of reporters who have been consistently wrong about Thailand’s giant leap toward legalization.

CNN falsely reported that “Thailand on Thursday became the first country in Asia to decriminalize cannabis – but tough penalties will still apply to those who use the drug to rise.”

There has been so much misinformation and bad reports about the legalization of cannabis that misconceptions about its legal status or limited strength have become gospel for many.

No, even Thonglor Police will arrest anyone for weeding: Commander

Disbelief that Thailand took such a drastic step reverberates across the headlines of the world’s major news outlets, fueling confusion rather than clarifying understanding.

Thailand legalizes the cannabis trade But recreational use is still prohibitedThe esteemed BBC title of a report put forth and incorrectly answered her question: ‘So is it legal or not? With Thailand’s tourism economy recovering from its long slumber due to the Covid virus, many visitors will wonder if the neoliberal order governing cannabis means they can light a joint wherever and whenever they want. The answer from the government is no, you cannot smoke marijuana in public, and it remains illegal to sell or supply any products containing more than 0.2% of the hallucinogenic compound THC.”

The imagined “cap” of weed strength at 0.2% and the ban on smoking for pleasure are some of the most persistent lies.

Reached for comment on Monday, Southeast Asia reporter and English-language media demo Jonathan Head said he was not authorized to respond, adding that he was preparing his own report on the matter due to be shown next week.

after, after Coconut Accessed by the BBC, a London spokesperson sent a worded statement that “[a]Although the word “products” in this context is not wrong, we agree that it can confuse audiences. So we’ve modified the story to use the more accurate term, “excerpt.”

In fact, there are currently no laws regulating cannabis. Instead, there has been a legal void since it was removed from the list of controlled substances on May 9. Not even an age limit. That’s because lawmakers have been slow to work on a bill that would regulate its use. The first reading only passed on Wednesday and it will likely be months away from the legislation unless emergency measures are taken.

Until then, public nuisance laws – which can be used to enforce any disorderly behavior – are the only legal tool police can use to punish smokers at the moment. Even then, offenders receive a warning before the violations are repeated with a hefty fine and possible jail time.

Cannabis is legal on Thursday but please pay attention to the smell: Thai health officials

The most common mistake was the near-universal reporting that there would be a 0.2% THC limit for any cannabis – an effective ban for it. This distortion spread through the echo chamber so completely that it became difficult to refute it. The only limitation – which reporters have misinterpreted and taken as fact – is secondary “extracts” such as foodstuffs, oils, candles, etc.

as such Coconut In January in an attempt to break through the disinformation, reporters appeared to misunderstand what an “excerpt”.

Rittipong “Beer” Dachkul was the first customer to walk into the Highland Café around 9 a.m. Thursday to buy over-the-counter cannabis. Photo: Chayanit Itthipongmaetee / Coconuts Bangkok

For the truth, one has only to read the actual government orders issued.

Ministry of Public Health specified in August order Herb-infused food products should not contain more than 0.2% THC by weight.

Then there was the ministerial order signed by Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul last February Cannabis removal and addition of cannabis extracts Combined with opium poppy and psilocybin.

That order went into effect on Thursday, 120 days after it was published in the Royal Gazette, legalizing marijuana.

“The 0.2% thing, or the low potency thing they are talking about is the cannabis removal regulation of controlled substances,” Aaron said. It says extracts containing more than 0.2% THC are still considered narcotics. If you read it correctly, there is no mention of the cannabis plant at all.”

Yes, Thailand, you will be able to smoke weed at home

Aaron said reporters did not do their due diligence.

“So when this information spread through the news, I don’t know if they didn’t pay attention to the documents, or if they just saw ‘0.2’ and said, ‘Ah! ” he added.

This has not prevented the World News Services from getting it wrong:

“Thailand decriminalizes marijuana, but not the strong stuff” The Associated Press reportedfollowed by Accurate report by heavy hitters on Friday.

“Marijuana is now legal, but not for recreational use,” Bloomberg, the bragging commercial outlet, stated, reporting that “however, prospects for the Thai cannabis trade will be limited by the state’s ban on recreational use and production of anything more than 0.2% quaternary.” Hydrocannabinol (THC), a psychoactive compound that gives users a “high” sensation.”

SMH, Blooms. SMH.

Strong marijuana was publicly smoked by hundreds of attendees at the “Thailand 420: Legaleo” event held last weekend in western Bangkok. Photo: Chayanit Itthipongmaetee / Coconuts Bangkok

Friday’s report came from Reuters International:

“Thailand has relaxed rules around cannabis, allowing people to grow the plant at home. But smoking is still prohibitedCorrespondent Leila Shahrukhshahi confirmed that the government “will allow the consumption of marijuana in food and drink.”

After citing the prime minister as saying, unconditionally, that “people can consume cannabis and hemp” from Thursday, the report erred in saying that authorities “have decided to limit the strength of cannabis products that are now legal, which would exclude smokers.” Of the drugs known as pot or weed of height.”

Coconut reporters can verify that the weeds sold in many Bangkok dispensaries – from Highland Cafe and Sukhumweed to The Dispensary by Taratera – were very strong strains such as the Zkittlez, Snoop Dogg OG, Thai Loy and others.

Reuters also erred in a report that cannabis growers must register via a government app. Not true, as it is not legally required.

Accessed for comment on Monday, Reuters’ newly appointed Head of Southeast Asia Kay Johnson referred questions to the communications team. In response, Reuters spokeswoman Kylie Rogers said they are reviewing the matter.

After publishing this story, Reuters correct their reports to Remove confirmation Smoking marijuana is not allowed.

All this is not said Coconut Which has stated since January that de facto legalization is coming this month, he made no mistakes in his reporting. However, these errors fell on the conservative side, such as the earlier assertion that farmers would be required to register their plants, and that smoking would only be allowed in the home.

As a nominally conservative country led by ultra-conservatives, Thailand has downplayed the radical 180 degree turn it has taken by concealing it with “warnings” and warnings rather than announcing to the world the full extent of its liberalization. But these suggestions have no legal weight.

Asked if he had seen any journalists testing the Highland products they were claiming about, Aaron noted that none of them took their reporting that far.

“I haven’t seen any reporters smoking my things,” he said. “But I was too busy.”

Additional reporting Chayanit Itthipongmaetee

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