The possibility of a metaverse is attracting all kinds of people (as well as companies and institutions). In the U.S., several companies that sell cannabis products are already in this virtual space. And in the emirate of Ajman (the smallest member of the UAE), the police themselves have opened a police station for the avatar.
Cannabis: 1,000 visitors per day
Both the Decentraland platform and Voxels are already working with cannabis companies.
Because the metaverse is necessarily decentralized, these advertisers can discuss the advantages of their products more freely than Facebook, for example, argues Lisa Buffo, founder and CEO of the Cannabis Marketing Association.
Since December, Higher Life CBD Dispensary LLC has opened a store on Voxels, a platform created in 2008 that operates using cryptocurrencies and NFTs.
Higher Life reports on its website that it offers “a range of high-quality CBD and hemp products designed to allow users to experience a full range of health benefits while providing a feeling of total relaxation.”
Physically, it’s on a central street in Indianapolis, Indiana, but it’s also accessible from the second floor of one of Voxels’ online stores. There, no avatars buy the company’s products, but if they get access to sales records, they’re routed to a website where a range of botanical derivatives can be ordered.
According to Higher Life CEO Brandon Howard, a thousand people visit the digital store every day.
Enthusiasts believe it will be possible to buy marijuana directly in a virtual world in the next few years, betting that the U.S. still has fewer restrictions around the product and derivatives.
In Decentraland, the leader is Kandy Girl, a brand of chewable candy with THC additives that can be shipped to most of the United States.
This Kandy Girl also made $30,000 NFT orOffer virtual wearables (or “wearables” in Portuguese), such as feathers that look more like marijuana leaves.
But the platform noted the need to strictly comply with government regulations on the product and its derivatives, which means that sales to countries that still ban such trade are prohibited.
In Meta’s metaverse (formerly Facebook), advertising for cannabis-based products, as well as promoting commercialization or the use of illegal or sports drugs, is prohibited.
Virtual Police Department
While the Metaverse has proven to be an interesting space for dealing with issues on the fringes of legitimacy, in another corner, let’s say, is the Ajman Police.
The emirate has opened a virtual police station with more than 200,000 residents in the capital of the same name to receive avatars of citizens. So they don’t even have to go to the school district.
Authorities and civilians can interact using Quest glasses or via smartphones, tablets, laptops and computers. There’s even a conference room in the Metaverse that you can access from anywhere in the world.
The Ajman Police Command is proud to report that this is the first police service of its kind in the UAE, and the local police is the first government agency in the emirate of Ajman to make the leap to digital.
In December, the United Arab Emirates eased some tough drug laws, easing penalties for travelers carrying products containing THC, the main intoxicating ingredient in marijuana.
The new law states that people who bring food, beverages and other cannabis items into the country for the first time will no longer be arrested. Instead, the authorities will confiscate and destroy the products.
It’s unclear what cops in the virtual police department would do if they encountered a high-octane avatar.