Then and Now: Industry Playbooks and Addiction Marketing

Discussion Guide

Unlike a traditional documentary, Then and Now carefully and intentionally condenses a great deal of research and history into 11 short minutes.  Its utility serves as a conversation starter in an educational group setting for a wide range of audiences.  

This discussion guide may be used as a simple tool to engage family, friends, classmates, colleagues and communities in a follow-up conversation about the information presented in the video. The questions below prompt viewers to share thoughts and perspectives, and deepen understanding, through dialogue.  Feel free to craft additional questions to enhance your viewing follow-up plan.

  • What is your general reaction to the video?  How did this video make you feel?  What surfaced for you?  
  • Did you learn something new, or see a different perspective you had not yet considered?
  • What are your thoughts about the history of the tobacco industry?  Did the comparisons between tobacco and marijuana resonate with you?
  • The video makes the case that the marijuana industry is following in the footsteps of big tobacco. Do you agree or disagree with this position? Explain why.
  • Big tobacco’s marketing strategies were effective in building a mass consumer base and had detrimental impact on public health. Do you think the marijuana industry could be headed in the same direction? 
  • The video’s title is called Then and Now: Industry Playbooks and Addiction Marketing.  What do you think is meant by “Addiction Marketing”?  What do you think about marketing products that consumers can develop an addiction to?
  • As a growing organ, the youth brain is primed for addiction.  What are your thoughts on Addiction Marketing and youth?
  • Over the past few years, a vast amount of marijuana news and information has been disseminated through mass media. Do you think mass media has had a role in shaping current opinion and beliefs about marijuana?  Has the media had a role in influencing decisions about today’s marijuana laws and policy?
  • When it comes to marijuana use or the marijuana industry, what information do you think people need to be aware of?  How should this information be shared?
  • Who do you think benefits from commercialization of the marijuana industry?  
  • Some people believe that the media benefits from commercialized marijuana.  Do you agree?Why or why not?   
  • How do you know when the information you see in the media is accurate? Do you think the information in this video is accurate? What makes you feel that way?
  • In watching the video, what else surfaced for you that has not yet been discussed?  
  • Did you learn anything from the video or follow-up discussion that you will share with others in your home and your community?