Big brother is watching you, bro. He’s watching you as you search for things about weed. Why? We don’t know. But we do know that a quick look at Google trend charts by Polly Washburn of The Cannabist turned a whole mess of data on what kinds of cannabis-related search Americans made in 2017.
We know, for instance, that Americans still use the word “marijuana” a whole lot more than they use “cannabis.” But, in states with legalized or lax policies on weed, more people used the “word” cannabis. In Oregon, which has the smallest ratio of “marijuana” use to “cannabis” use, residents only use “marijuana” 1.6 as many times as they use “cannabis.”
Legalization also seems to have increased the use of the word “cannabis” in Canada, where “cannabis” actually outpaced “marijuana” for several weeks late in the year.
Another interesting factoid about marijuana lingo: apparently no one says “medical cannabis.” When looking at how Google searches identified MMJ, the trend charts found that nearly everyone used the phrase “medical marijuana.” Way, way, way down in the charts, “medical cannabis” and “medical weed” came neck and neck, and “medical pot” sank even lower.
But less formal applications of cannabis lead to less formal applications of language it seems. When they talk about medicine, people say “marijuana,” but when they talk about brownies, they say “weed.” The term “weed brownies” far outpaced any other way to talk about edible brownies. “Pot brownies” trailed behind at second place. Way, way down the list are “marijuana brownies,” “cannabis brownies,” and, last but not least, “cbd brownies.”
The biggest success story in cannabis Google searches seems to be “weed vape,” which increased steadily over the course of 2017, upticking in searches by nearly a third.
But old technology still prevails in the minds of stoner. Even with all that vaping that’s been going on, the word “bong” is consistently more popular in Google searches than either “vape pen” or “vaporizer.”
Photo via Flickr user Neon Tommy