Facebook is blocking pages mentioning marijuana from searches, including government agencies

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Facebook is well-known for not being particularly marijuana-friendly, whether that's by hiding posts about cannabis or straight up banning accounts associated with it. But now it seems they've taken it even further, writes Joseph Misulonas.

Several people have found out that Facebook has shadow banned almost all pages related to marijuana. This means that when you search "marijuana" almost no results show up even though there are tons of pages related to it. You can still find these pages if you have know their URL and they still exist, but they won't show up in search results on the world's most popular social media website.

And there doesn't seem to be any criteria for this shadow ban. Everything from marijuana fan pages to cannabis businesses to even the California Bureau of Cannabis Control, a government agency that regulates marijuana in the state, are all not showing up in Facebook search results.

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The question is why is Facebook doing this. There's perhaps some bizarre justification where they could claim that allowing these pages would constitute helping criminal enterprises since marijuana is illegal at the federal level in the United States. However, they aren't banning these pages. They're simply preventing anyone from discovering them. 

Facebook has not yet commented on their justification for these bans. But if they ever do comment, we doubt it will be a great justification.

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