Your Premier Source for Cannabis Insights and Trends

Have You Been Bullied by a Canna-Bro? Here Is What You Should Do Next!


canna-bro culture and bullies

Canna-bro culture is an unfortunate development over the past 5 to 10 years in the cannabis space.  What is canna-bro culture?  How did it start?  What can you do about it if a canna-bro tries to intimidate you or bully you?  Let’s cover what bro culture is and how it made its way into the cannabis industry.


What is Bro Culture?

Bro culture is just what it sounds like, defined as “ is a subculture of young men who spend time partying with others like themselves.[1] Although the original image of the bro lifestyle is associated with sports apparel and fraternities, it lacks a consistent definition” as defined by Wikipedia. Another definition of bro culture at work is, “In the workplace, bro culture is where male employees are seen as the default and female as an aberration, which leads to misogynistic and discriminatory behavior against those that are not recognized as the same.”


Bro-culture in the cannabis space was covered by David Hodes of the Fresh Toast in his article, “The Rise and Impeding Doom of Canna-Bro Culture”, a great read and source of background information.  Bro culture is what the “Good Old Boys” network is referred to in other industries that have a much longer history than the corporate cannabis industry. The culture is generally exclusive to white males in management and executive positions, and non-inclusive of women, minorities, and members of the LGBT community.


Cannabis-Bro Culture

When did Canna-Bro culture start, or how did it get started at all?  What starts the whole culture is a whole lot of money given to a select group of males, generally white males.  The money is then protected and entrusted to only a select few, “the bros”, who can be trusted and think the same way as the originators of the money.  With money, and the fame that follows, comes the ego and hubris of apparent success.  Success as defined by getting funding or an investor, not actual business performance.  The beginning of cannabis bro-culture can be traced to the usual and obvious suspects. Adam Bierman, the brash young trailblazer of MedMen who showed careless disregard for others in the cannabis industry and seemed more intent on getting on the cover of Rolling Stone than actually building a business that could create a profit. Dan Bilzerian, a social media legend who invested millions in creating a cannabis lifestyle story filled with scores of bikini-clad women, machine guns, jet skis, yachts, and just about every other Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous cliché you can think of. Was it controversial pot investor Andy DeFrancesco with his shirtless photos, brash talk, vulgar texts, and his intimidation tactics on certain cannabis-based reporters?


One thing is for sure, once there was serious money at stake with the future thought of cannabis legalization, the canna-bro culture emerged as a way for fast talking and less than scrupulous people to try and gain a leg up in the cannabis industry.


How Can You Spot a Canna-Bro?


The canna-bro is not unlike a regular bro in bro culture.  The are generally outspoken, aggressive, full of hubris and arrogance, crave fame and attention, and do not like it when they are disagreed with or presented with facts that don’t support the “story” they are creating.   Canna-bros should not be confused with Cannabis Chads, that is a different group of alpha-males in the cannabis industry who wear fancy suits and want to turn cannabis 100% corporate. Cannabis chads are generally interested in making a ton of profit and driving fancy cars, not so high on the harassment and intimidation scale as canna-bros. Common canna-bro phrases that may give you a hint that you are dealing with a canna-bro include:

Do you know who I am?

Google me, B#$%#$!

I make a ton of money how about you?

I control the “X” market of cannabis

Yeah, check out my Ferrari (Lambo), what are you driving?

My cannabis product is premium, premium stuff, so it costs 3x the regular price

You have no idea what you are talking about

Spreadsheets and data are for nerds, I know what I am doing


Canna-bro talk, and intimidation isn’t limited to individuals, companies adopt the same level of hubris if allowed too as well. The content editor of a historically well-known cannabis magazine has threatened numerous journalists with lawsuits if they published unflattering pieces about their company.  100% factually correct articles, but since most journalist make a meager amount on content in the cannabis space, they leverage their size to scare journalist into not publishing credible content due to possible legal fees down the road.


How Do You Stop Canna-Bro Bullying or Intimidation?


There are a few ways to combat the bullying that comes with canna-bros, and they are similar strategies with bullies in real life.  When a bully messes with your kid at school, you call the teacher or maybe the bully’s parents.  The same goes for canna-bros.  The good thing is the canna-bros are like Icarus, they think they are untouchable, and they don’t understand leverage due to the blindness their egos have created. Most canna-bros have a source of funds, whether it be a hedge fund, public entity, or famous investor.  As in real bully life, you can look up who their backers are and contact them saying you are feeling intimated or sexually harassed by XYZ, and as a financial backer, are you aware of their actions?  Show the funding sources (i.e. the parents) the data or screenshots, and ask them for a comment, say you are working on a story about vetting and how funds and investors are careless, or do not do enough due diligence on who they invest with, and how could you invest with this person.

Once the source of the funds, or the piggy bank, gets wind of a possible harassment or sexual harassment lawsuit online, watch how fast the canna-bro talk disappears. Investors big and small want to protect their investment and certainly don’t want a bad public trail to a company they put money into and have money at risk with currently.  One call from the people cutting the checks to the canna-bros is usually all it takes for them to go silent.  Having investors, a boss, or something to lose, means they are vulnerable, and the victim can get leverage.


The second way to combat canna-bro bullying is file a public complaint.  It does not have to be expensive or fancy, but the good news is that most .gov websites that host the public records of the complaint will outrank any high domain website the canna-bros are working on or have references from online. Your complaint will soon rank #1 in Google for their name or company, or on the first page at least, and they will spend endless hours talking about it in the future with investors, regulators, and customers.  They will forever wish they never messed with you or tried to intimidate you.  Remember the power of .gov and local government websites when it comes to ranking in Google.  One harassment form filed on the right server can last an online lifetime.


Three, use facts on canna-bros.  Canna-bros aren’t big on facts, so show them consumer surveys, data, sales records that do not support their ideology or branding story.  They will get angry and agitated if you don’t agree with them. (Exhibit A) This is because most canna-bro stories are not built on sound research and facts, but more the fantasy of being “the man”, a celebrity, a lusting after fame. If you dispute their “story” with fact, and they can’t respond with their own data or facts, they will attack you personally.  You are old, you are gay, you are dumb, they make so much more money than you than you must be wrong, the usual personal attacks you would get when facts and research support your argument and they don’t have anything else to do but to try and de-fame or discredit you so the facts you are using are put into a poor light.  When they attack, it means they know their story is weak, and they are looking for another way to disprove your facts, remain calm, and continue with facts.


Fourth, support more women in the cannabis space, more members of the LGBT community in the c-suite of cannabis companies, insist to the brands you buy that they have minority representation in management.  Companies will listen to consumers when money and sales are at stake, the rest is just online jibber jabber.  Show companies you are serious with your wallet, and they will listen.


In the end, the hubris-based canna-bro story falls apart just like Icarus falling from the sky. Adam Bierman left MedMen in disgrace, Dan Bilzerian shut his cannabis brand down, and Andy DeFrancesco was charged with securities fraud in New York Federal court.


The cannabis industry is so young, it is not too late to put an end to canna-bro culture before it is permanently embedded in its corporate roots.






Source link

Comments are closed.