Vape News In Brief: August 21st, 2018 Edition
Vape News In Brief: August 21st, 2018 Edition
*VNIB* is a semi-regular column in which we take a look around the globe, searching for news, science, and the occasional pop culture reference related to vaping and the life of vapers. Today, let's talk about…
…this piece, which takes a deep dive into a topic we're all tired of: Juul. Part of the arguments here are disingenuous, such as blaming the company for unauthorized third-party vendors selling "skins" for the device that feature pop culture characters, or the frequently-misleading "Truth Initiative" taking sole credit for reducing youth smoking rates. But there's at least one honest question: why is the company only releasing reduced-nicotine pods in unpopular flavors like mint and tobacco, while keeping ultra-high nicotine levels the only option for fruit and dessert flavors? This is particularly telling given the company is going to have to produce lower-nicotine refills for the EU market, where 50 mg/ml liquid is well beyond the legal limit.
Unrelated to anything of consequence, still creepy: this soccer coach was spotted chewing on cigarette butts along the side of the pitch during a Premier League match. They weren't lit at the time, but this kind of begs the question – were they lit at some point in the past? If yes: eeeeewwww. If no: why?!?
Here's an excellent longread on how vaping has evolved in the unique environment of New Zealand, where it's not technically legal but is still widely embraced by government officials. Since Big Tobacco companies have largely been kept out, along with their cigalike and "heat not burn" technology, traditional mods and refillable open-system tanks still reign supreme – in one corner of the vape planet, the salad days of 2015 and 2016 continue unabated.
Next, let's turn to an interesting argument, albeit one we're not quite on board with: if you're going to ban flavors, ban them in combustible tobacco and in e-liquids for vapor products, but let us keep flavoring chewing tobacco and snuff. Somehow, the case goes, since combustible tobacco (think cigarettes, cigars, pipes) has been linked to lung cancer, and vapor products are too new to tie to any kind of cancer, non-combustible tobacco, which has only been linked to cancers of the mouth, tongue, and throat, should get a pass…
Even in China, birthplace of the modern e-cigarette, it appears that the spread of misinformation is informing public policy decisions. Claims about secondhand vapor being harmful have been thoroughly debunked, but it still stands to reason that vaping in a heavily-populated public space like a subway car is, as the kids might say, a dick move.
Science: new research suggests that vapor may damage lung cells responsible for trapping inhaled dust, bacteria, and other particles. As is usually the case, a small sample size and lack of long-term study prevent the findings from being conclusive. Researchers say vaping is still likely less dangerous than smoking due to dramatically lower carcinogen levels, but as time passes it's possible a link between vaping and lung ailments like COPD may develop.
Here's an interesting look at the trash/recycling challenges presented by disposable cigalikes. The author here is mostly concerned with cannabis vapes, but the process and materials used in disposable e-cigs are fairly comparable.
Insurance giant State Farm is suing online retailer Amazon after a battery sold by the outfit allegedly exploded, sparking a fire that caused $400,000 in damage to a State Farm customer's home. The tactic isn't a new one, last year the insurer went after Apple, claiming that another fire at a customer's house was the fault of a defective iPhone.
Vapor bans, often lumped in with corresponding prohibitions on cigarette smoking, are nothing new – we see them cropping up all the time covering parks, sidewalks, sports venues, and just about any other public sphere you can think of. Parking garages in Anchorage, Alaska are probably the most specific ban locale we've encountered to date, though.
The fact that "secondhand vapor" contains no detectable carcinogens is being used by a British parliamentary report to argue that some of those vaping restrictions we were just mentioning should actually be relaxed in the UK – naturally, the finding has been met with some controversy. We'll have more on this issue soon.
In Australia, where debate has been ongoing for years as to whether or not to permit the use and sale of vapor products (liquid nicotine is currently banned for e-cig use but still widely bootlegged by the Aussie vaping contingent), it appears vaping proponents are gaining ground. Last week saw a handful of politicians and an entire party switching over to the pro-vapor side of the aisle.
We'll leave it with that for now, but over the next week or so news will keep on breaking – we'll show up a few days later to fix it.