A California company has launched a software platform to help cannabis companies increase their social influence and maintain compliance with social media policies.
Earlier this month, San Francisco-based Amnesia Media announced the launch of Highlyte, an artificial intelligence-based (AI) platform to ensure social media safety in the highly regulated cannabis industry.
Amnesia calls the cannabis industry a field buffeted by rules that are often unclear and vary between states.
The company says that social media sites and regulators target legal companies because of cannabis’ national status as an illegal substance.
Modern Problems Require Modern Solutions
To avoid deactivations and shadowbans, Amnesia says Highlyte focuses on a company’s potentially non-compliant text, images, and video before a posting goes live.
Citing BDSA data, Amnesia says cannabis is estimated to gross approximately $31 billion in national sales in 2021, a 41 percent increase over 2020.
Still, Amnesia says that, while social media is the best way for brands to set themselves apart from the competition, marketing in legal states is restricted and losing can be ruinous.
According to Pioneer Intelligence founder Ben Walters, Instagram account suspensions and removals increased more than 100 percent from November 2020 to November 2021.
Amnesia CEO Courtney Wu says cannabis companies are unwittingly playing Russian Roulette when they post to social media, risking their ability to communicate with followers and their credibility.
“This is not just an in-house issue,” says Wu. “We see clients suffer high amounts of risk from working with such third party content creators as influencers or even well-meaning customer testimonials. Every week we see cannabis MSOs in the top 20 tier suffer shadow-bans and deactivations as a result—and the numbers are climbing. Everyone in this industry is constantly at risk.”
(Even Candid Chronicle is not exempt from the rules when simply reporting the news. I served a short stint in Facebook jail in July after sharing a link on the Zuckerberg platform to an article I wrote about a new Eaze app. According to Facebook, the post violated the platform’s rules, though they never stated which ones it broke. -BC)
Compliance Experience and AI for the Cannabis Industry
Wu and CPO Raymond Ting, both regulatory compliance experts, co-founded Amnesia in 2020 to deliver the most reliable and accurate content compliance services for culture and cannabis industry-shaping brands.
Both executives come from the highly-regulated online gaming world where Wu was CMO for PokerStars Global Pro & Celebrity, and Ting founded and developed the first real-money-prize poker app in the Apple App Store, Rivals of Poker.
According to Amnesia, Highlyte includes complete cannabis advertising standards for California, Nevada, and Colorado.
The company says the software will soon include specs for all states.
Powered by AI and designed to iterate, Amnesia says the more companies use the Highlyte software, the more it learns and can detect small infractions and illegal juxtapositions that a human might miss.
“Compliance doesn’t strangle content,” says Ting. “In fact, compliance regulations present challenges that actually elevate creativity and help express unique brand identities in an extremely competitive marketplace. Highlyte by Amnesia exists to help cannabis businesses do exactly that—and do it right.”
Amnesia says that no company using Highlyte during the beta phase was flagged for non-compliance.