Interviews

Published on April 8th, 2019 | by Darren Paltrowitz

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TheWeedTube’s Arend Richard On Launching An App For 4/20, Co-Founding A Video Platform & More

TheWeedTube, the premier digital video platform for cannabis-focused content creators, will be launching a new app for iOS and Android devices on April 20, 2019. Of course coinciding with the date widely recognized as a national holiday for cannabis culture, TheWeedTube’s mobile app and seminal website both started as a grassroots effort by a group of deleted YouTubers seeking a safe home for their content after the company completely wiped out their widely followed cannabis-focused accounts without warning or explanation. To achieve their shared goal, the group crowdfunded $15,000 in three days to launch TheWeedTube.com a little over one year ago in March 2018.

The website has since become one of the fastest growing platforms in cannabis, and is the first video-based social network to provide monetization options to cannabis influencers and to offer cannabis companies commercial-style advertising. Arend Richard, TheWeedTube co-founder and influential content creator AKA The Gay Stoner, had been deleted from YouTube with 120,000 subscribers; fellow co-founder MacKenzie McKurry AKA MacDizzle420 had around 200,000 subscribers at time of deletion.

Along with easy sign-up functionality and the ability to upload videos, TheWeedTube app includes push notifications as users who subscribe to creators’ channels will be alerted whenever new videos are posted, which is notably a feature that YouTube no longer makes readily available. Creators are also able to share content on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter directly from TheWeedTube app, all of which help to maximize exposure for content-creators and their creative works.

I had the pleasure of doing Q&A with Arend Richard himself about the forthcoming TheWeedTube app, daily operations of TheWeedTube’s website, and what else is coming up. More on Richard and TheWeedTube can be found online at www.theweedtube.com.

 

 

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Who’s coming to the after party? I’ll be having a good time! Come sesh with us! Link in story 🙂

A post shared by Arend Richard (@arendrichard) on

TheWeedTube is rolling out a new mobile app on April 20th. How long has that been in the works for?

Arend Richard: Just over six months. We really took the time to make sure we developed the product we needed.

What exactly will be on the app? How would you describe it to someone not yet familiar?

Arend Richard: Along with the ability to upload videos, share and engage, TheWeedTube app includes push notifications so that subscribers automatically know when the creators they follow post a new video. This is incremental in maximizing exposure for the creators and their work, and is an extremely user-friendly feature. Creators are also able to share content on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter directly from TheWeedTube app.

Our hope for the app is that it works well for the user in a way that they want it to. We want you to be able to watch, discover, and engage with videos in a smooth, functioning way. In the cannabis industry, there has been a pretty significant lack of well-made apps. People trying to rush their product out without taking the time to really develop a nice-looking system. There are only a handful of cannabis related apps out there that function well. Our goal with TheWeedTube app is to deliver a high-quality social media application that can function and perform as well as mainstream apps.

What is a typical day for you like in working with TheWeedTube?

Arend Richard: Absolutely crazy in the best way possible. No day is like the last. It’s truly a rollercoaster. It’s a fun exciting time to be part of such a fast-paced environment.

Do you have a favorite part of your job?

Arend Richard: Watching the videos other creators upload to TheWeedTube. I get this warm fuzzy feeling all over that is unmatched in my 29 years on this planet. It’s so rewarding to see other people working hard at something I’ve done for years, on a platform I helped create for them.

Is there something you wish more people knew about TheWeedTube?

Arend Richard: I wish that everyone knew that TheWeedTube was founded out of necessity — following the YouTube cannabis purge of February 2018 — not greed. We have such a unique experience in starting and running this business. Most people out there who start a company are all about the money, which they probably should be. Business is about earning. However, money is not our top priority. Our top priority is to foster a sense of community by operating with integrity. I think that differentiates us from a lot of other businesses out there, cannabis or otherwise.

When not busy with TheWeedTube, how do you like to spend your free time?

Arend Richard: It’s hard to remember a time when I wasn’t busy with TheWeedTube but… I’d say I’m an outdoors kinda guy. Love a good hike or a day on the lake. I’m also a car and motorcycle enthusiast, so I love a good drive on a windy Colorado road.

What was the last concert you attended for fun?

Arend Richard: Christina Aguilera’s tour in 2018 for my birthday. Actually, I had attended my first ever concert last year right before which was Demi Lovato. Both women absolutely killed it. Would see again — 10/10.

Finally, Arend, any last words for the kids?

Arend Richard: The best piece of advice I ever received is always something I like to share. A wise woman in the cannabis industry who runs Rehab Delivery in SoCal once told me: “Arend, if you want to build the tallest skyscraper in the city skyline, you do it by focusing on your skyscraper. Not all the other ones around it.” That advice changed my life. I hope it can help others too.

 


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About the Author

Darren Paltrowitz is a New York resident (and Long Island native) with over 15 years of entertainment industry experience. He began working around the music business as a teenager, interning for the manager of his favorite band Superdrag. In the years following, he has worked with a wide array of artists including OK Go, They Might Be Giants, Mike Viola, Tracy Bonham, Loudness, Rachael Yamagata, and Amanda Palmer.Darren's writing has appeared in dozens of outlets including the New York Daily News, Inquisitr, The Daily Meal, The Hype Magazine, All Music Guide, Guitar World, TheStreet.com, Format Magazine, Businessweek, The Improper, the L.A. Times, and the Jewish Journal. He is a member of the SATW and the IFWTWA organizations as a food and travel writer.Darren is also the host the recently-launched "Paltrocast With Darren Paltrowitz" podcast, as co-produced with PureGrainAudio.


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