The weed industry has been maturing a lot lately. Weed is becoming legalized, taxed, and incorporated into America’s capitalistic structure. But what weed doesn’t have yet is a messiah. There’s no Bill Gates, no Ted Turner, no Steve Jobs. No genius that has successfully transformed the industry into their image by creating a business that affects every aspect of cannabis.
Snoop Dogg’s Merry Jane is probably the biggest run at the Ted Turner of weed title that has been made so far. The website, which was announced last weekend at a Tech Crunch event, is being described by Mr. Dogg as a cannabis lifestyle site, but its reach is much wider than that simple description makes it sound.
Merry Jane will not only feature video and written content in a form not unlike say for example Dabs Magazine or High Times, but will also try to function as a definitive resource for information on marijuana stores and dispensaries as well as various marijuana strains. The announcement also said the site is likely to feature Snoop’s celebrity stoner friends like Miley Cyrus and Seth Rogen who are “down with the team.” That makes Merry Jane sound like not so much a variation on High Times with a celebrity face, but an empire that will attempt to eclipse the efforts of cannabis news sites, the database resources of Leafly and Weedmaps, and the celebrity entertainment aspect of BReal.TV in order to become the definitive online resource for all things weed.
What Merry Jane has going for it, obviously, is Snoop’s celebrity and, given that, very likely a metric fuck ton of investor cash behind the launch. What it has going against it is that Weedmaps, B-Real and especially Leafly have already got a pretty good foothold in the cannabis tech world. Snoop will need some Zuckerberg smarts if he’s going to be the Facebook to their MySpace.
The other key to his success might be appealing to all demographics. While BReal.TV might mostly appeal to younger, hip-hop-listening crowds, it sounds like Merry Jane wants to hit all four quadrants like a Hoover hits a bong – long and hard. “There are so many people in the closet,” said Snoop at the Tech Crunch event. “And we are giving them an opportunity to come out of the closet and just admit they like to smoke. I’m a smoker, my name is Snoop Dogg, and I’m a stoner.”
Those interested can visit the Merry Jane website now. The official launch isn’t for a few weeks but if you like you can take a look at the temporary homepage, which looks like the golden gates to some kind of club for evil old money billionaires who have made unholy deals that make them green smoke breathing half-demons. Who knows? Maybe that image is the way to go.