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In the UK? Grow pot? You can help science!

Illustration for article titled In the UK? Grow pot? You can help science!

Are people who grow pot all part of an organized crime ring? Are they simply insane? UK criminologist Gary Potter wanted to find out. He and his colleagues are hoping to form a more accurate picture of people who cultivate marijuana in the UK. These researchers are asking UK residents who grow pot to take an anonymous online survey so that they can give policymakers and the public a more realistic picture of who grows pot and why.


Potter explains in a personal statement why he wanted to do this study:

Cannabis cultivation features regularly in the British media: as entertainment (Attack the Block, Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Saving Grace being just three examples of successful British films with a cannabis cultivation theme), but more often as ‘news'. Stories about cannabis growing often focus on the alleged links between domestic cultivation, the apparent increased potency of a type of cannabis that the media (albeit erroneously) likes to call ‘skunk', and supposed links to health problems such as schizophrenia. Alternatively they focus on possible links between cannabis growing and crime – including organised crime. Occasionally there is a human interest aspect, but mostly cannabis cultivators are portrayed as drug dealers and as criminals – evils to be confronted and punished by society. But just how accurate are these stereotypes?


Want to take the anonymous survey? Click here.

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Annalee Newitz

I love that illustration of a "normal joint" so much. I've been waiting for a chance to use it.