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Recreational weed is now legal in California. What exactly does that change?
Back on November 8, 2016, California voted to pass Prop 64, allowing the legal sale of marijuana not just for medicinal purposes, but for recreational enjoyment.
And starting on New Year’s Day, the state’s dispensaries were officially permitted to start selling.
California is now only the 5th state in the US (after WA, CO, OR and AK) to legalize recreational weed — though on a federal level, it’s still illegal. Here’s the skinny on what you need to know.
First off, what’s the law say?
Under Prop 64 (AKA, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act), 21+ year-old adults in California are legally allowed to possess up to 1 oz (28.5 g) of bud in public, and can also grow up to 6 plants at home.
Only approved dispensaries can legally sell weed (both for medicinal and recreational purposes), though anyone can simply “give it away” as a gift.
How will it affect you?
Until now, you needed a medical marijuana card to legally buy weed at a CA dispensary (medical weed has been legal in the state since ‘96). Henceforth, you should be able to waltz into any shop and buy sans card.
However, be cognizant that while possession of up to 1 oz in public is now legal, consumption is not. California’s got very strict anti-smoking laws in place, and if you’re caught burning one down in your car or on the street, you could face a $100 fine.
How will it affect the industry at large?
Prop 64 imposes hefty taxes both on the cultivation and sale of legal hulk, including a $9.25-per-ounce tax on harvested nugs, and a 15% distributor tax (i.e. weed shops) — meaning legal weed may be a tad pricey at first.
But it’s projected that legal weed in CA will grow into a $3.7B-per-year industry in 2018, and a $5.1B industry by 2019, placing it on par with statewide beer sales.
There is one roadblock: it takes forever for dispensaries to get through regulatory hoops, and right now, there are only 90 in the entire state permitted to sell weed.
They don’t call us green-friendly for nothin’
Vevo had a big 2017, and music vids are back babayyy
According to a Financial Times report (paywall) Vevo, the web-equivalent of vintage MTV, upped revenues by 30% in 2017, as the ebbs of big-budget music videos have finally start flowin’ again.
“The Veve” reportedly broke even in 2017 making close to $650m — a $250m spike from 2016, with their videos topping 25B monthly views.
And, in 2018, they may actually become profitable
A “maybe” that’s highly noteworthy considering profitability isn’t a plane even Spotify can seem to land — startin’ off 2018 right.
Vevo was founded in 2009 as a joint venture between the “big 3” record labels (Universal, Sony, and Warner), who were miffed at the billions of dollars in ad revenue they weren’t making on the visual medium of music.
So, when YouTube cemented themselves as the quintessential online streaming platform, they saw dollar signs.
Cut to the start of 2018, and big stuff is happening in the world of Vevo video…
Ironically, thanks in part to some of YouTube’s content issues
According to Vevo, they said advertisers came running after pulling millions of dollars from YouTube when they caught their campaigns paired with some highly offensive content throughout last year.
So, while Vevo has struggled to monetize their content in the past, it seems their rival’s bumbles, along with a surge in music video streaming (the J-Biebs-featured hit “Despacito” raking in 4.5B views this year alone), are finally pushing them in the right direction.
Otto gets “so close,” but shuts down operations before shipping first smart lock
Digital smart lock company Otto has shut down just 4 months after unveiling its flagship product: a $699 smartphone-connected lock that founder and CEO Sam Jadallah described as a “love child” between a “Swiss watch and a Volvo.”
Otto’s team of 35+ had planned to see the first revenue from the lock in just 4 weeks. Instead, according to Jadallah’s Medium post titled “So Close,” Otto is over — and their prized product is sitting in a warehouse with no one to ship it.
So, what happened?
According to Jadallah, it was a case of runaway funding. Otto signed an agreement with a larger firm to acquire them on December 11th, which “restricted [their] ability to solicit other bids or fundraise” in the interim.
Alexa: *Boo-doop* “Playing ‘Hey, Soul Sister’ by Train.”
Alexa’s little noises, and others like it, may seem arbitrary, but they’re actually very important, decades-old audio cues called “earcons.”
In fact, these seemingly simple (yet excruciatingly complex) beeps and dings are straight up robot languages that help shape the way we communicate.
The most famous of them all? The Windows ’95 startup earcon
Composed by Brian Eno, this short melodic landscape may seem simple enough — but perfecting a futuristic 6-second jingle that embodies an entire company’s ethos is no easy task.
Just ask Austrian composer Walter Werzowa, who took on the formidable challenge of creating the five-note audio-face of computer processor giant, Intel. His job? To create “tones that evoked innovation, troubleshooting skills, and the inside of a computer…”
He clearly understood how to do this: the tune was listed as the #2 most addictive sound in the world back in 2010.
Earcons are becoming even more mainstream
Hard to believe, but these sounds have become more prevalent with each technological belt-notch. In Nokia’s heyday, their signature ring was heard around 1.8B times a day. That was in 2009.
Jump to 2019, earcons will be taking yet another giant sci-fi leap forward as the US auto industry will have to start making sure their quiet electric cars “make audible noise” below 19 MPH.
Knowing how ambitious The Hustle’s audience is, I’m certain nearly all of you have at least one resolution for 2018 –I know I do (dropping from 200 to 185 pounds, saving a set amount of money, and reducing my sugar intake, to name a few).
And, since it takes 66 days to form a new habit, it’s incredibly important that we create solid habits ASAP if we want to hit our goals.
I’ve tested hundreds of habit-forming products over the years. Here are the ones I’ve actually stuck with and use on a regular basis.
Power of Habit: I read this 371-page book in 2014, and it changed my life by making fitness a part of my daily routine. The Power of Habit does a wonderful job of simply explaining how to form habits, fast. No-brainer buy.
Cold Turkey: I’ve tried a ton of website blockers out there, and Cold Turkey is the only one that’s ever worked for me. It’s a desktop app that blocks a list of time-wasting sites. The free version is good enough for most people. I use the Pro version, and it’s only $30.
MyWeeklyBudget and Personal Capital: These are the two best products I’ve found for budgeting. MyWeeklyBudget is a dead-simple app that makes you consciously track your weekly spending by manually entering purchases. Personal Capital is my favorite site for aggregating personal finances.
Don’t break the chain: More of a strategy than a product. Get yourself a cheap or free calendar and don’t break the d*mn chain.