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01.12.2018 | Research | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, and Policy 1/2018

Cannabis and Kratom online information in Thailand: Facebook trends 2015–2016

Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, and Policy > Ausgabe 1/2018
Kanittha Thaikla, Kanokporn Pinyopornpanish, Wichuda Jiraporncharoen, Chaisiri Angkurawaranon



Our study aims to evaluate the trends in online information about cannabis and kratom on Facebook in Thailand, where there is current discussion regarding legalizing these drugs.


Between April and November 2015, reviewers searched for cannabis and kratom Facebook pages in the Thai language via the common search engines. Content analysis was performed and the contents of each page were categorized by the tone of the post (positive, negative or neutral). Then, a one-year follow-up search was conducted to compare the contents.


Twelve Facebook pages each were initially identified for cannabis and for kratom. Follower numbers were higher for cannabis pages. Kratom pages were less active but were open for a longer time. Posts with positive tones and neutral tones were found for both drugs, but none had negative tones. Other drugs were mentioned on the cannabis pages, but they were different from those mentioned on the kratom pages. Issues regarding drug legalization were found on the cannabis pages but not on the kratom pages during the searching period. One year later, the tone of the posts was in the same direction, but the page activity had increased.


The information currently available on the sampled Facebook pages was positive towards the use of cannabis and kratom. No information about harm from these drugs was found through our search.
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