On the Subject of Vaping

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Zzz

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On the Subject of Vaping

Post by Zzz » Mon Oct 2, 23:15 2017

I'm posting this here based on Rowan's suggestion.

There is a lot that can be said on the subject of vaping, but the thing I would like to talk about most, which nobody else in the vaping community ever seems to want to discuss, is the attitudes commonly found in the vaping community.

When I first got into vaping, I thought it was wonderful. I used it as a means of weaning myself off of tobacco. Over time, as I learned more about it, it became not only a safer and far less addictive alternative, it became a hobby. I was, and still am, very attracted to the strong DIY elements of it.

However, as vaping grew in popularity, it also seemed to attract a certain kind of person very frequently. A culture grew up around it which eventually made me choose to avoid vape shops, conventions, and groups all together.

I'm sure you all know the stereotype of people who vape. Honestly, it's really not that far from reality for a lot of vapers. While they may not all be fedora wearing neck beards, there are a lot of common ideas and attitudes shared among the kind of people I'm talking about. In a lot of ways, vaping has become an expression of hypermasculinity. A lot of vapers are obsessed with "cloud chasing", focusing on finding ways to blow the biggest clouds possible. Competitions are based around it, and even include participants who are sponsored by various vaping companies. At vaping conventions, companies often have women wearing bikinis or revealing dresses walking around their booths with signs and/or product samples to draw in convention attendees.

You also see hypermasculinity in the names, labeling, marketing, and even design of many of the products. For products marketed towards men it's all designed to invoke a sense of manliness and dominance in the person purchasing it. Big, bulky, darkly colored, often angular designs for devices and accessories. Products often named after weapons, predators, or stereotypically masculine activities and ideals. The marketing materials often contain the same elements. And there has been somewhat of an arms race among device manufacturers, to see who can produce the device with the most power output, with no concern for the practicality (or lack there of) of the level of power output the devices are capable of. For products marketed towards women, which are actually very few, they're always very small, often exclusively soft colors, and always have far less power output than devices typically marketed towards men.

I can't step foot in a vape shop any more without feeling like someone wants to prove they're bigger and stronger than me. I've seen women enter shops and either be completely ignored until the men present are done talking, or they get swarmed by men wanting to show off their vaping knowledge and be a "nice guy".

Then there is also the trend I have seen since last year, when the FDA decided to create and implement new regulations that unfairly burden the vaping industry. Because democrats typically tend to favor ever increasing regulation on vaping products, and republicans tend to favor keeping regulation to a minimum, many vapers have been basing their personal politics on who supports their hobby and habit and seemingly ignoring any other, more relevant issues.

It is for these reasons that I have come to feel that the vaping industry, and the prevailing culture that has grown up around it, deserves to die. In all honesty, I hope that the FDA regulations which unfairly burden the industry do end up destroying it. Maybe then, after all of vaping as we currently know it is gone, the industry can be rebuilt to become what it promised to be in the beginning.

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geldofc
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Re: On the Subject of Vaping

Post by geldofc » Tue Oct 3, 12:51 2017

i had no idea vaping had a culture like this. it sounds toxic. i guess it's not surprising. a dude blew a huge vape cloud walking by me the other day that smelled like grape.
:gf: :devil: :syringe:

Zzz

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Re: On the Subject of Vaping

Post by Zzz » Wed Oct 4, 2:34 2017

Yeah, some people don't seem to care how their habit might bother other people. I actually wish my clouds were smaller, but still had the same physical feeling when I inhale. I don't like the fact that I can still be a nuisance in open air even from several feet away. That's why I don't vape inside public buildings.

Not all vapers are like I described, of course. And neither are all vape products. But it is bad enough that I don't see the problem ever going away so long as the industry exists in its present state. Vapers get all fired up about defending the industry because it has been under fire from the FDA for so long. If you say anything critical at all, no matter how factually accurate, they'll just take it as an attack and stop listening.

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rowan
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Re: On the Subject of Vaping

Post by rowan » Wed Oct 4, 16:35 2017

That was interesting to read. I'm sorry the community turned so sucky. :( I don't see a lot of people vaping here, not sure why.

What's the DIY part? I just assumed you bought a device and then filled it with stuff. (clearly I don't know anything about it)
spacefem wrote:All your logical argue are belong to us!

Zzz

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Re: On the Subject of Vaping

Post by Zzz » Wed Oct 4, 19:48 2017

Rowan, it could be because of where you live. Some states and cities have very tight regulations on sales of vape products and e-liquid. It can be anything from banning fruit or candy flavors to requiring a vendor to meet absurdly specific requirements for the security of their shop. Really, there's a number of possible reasons you don't see many people vaping. From what I understand Calabasas, California has the most strict laws regarding vaping in public spaces (including outdoors). They essentially treat it exactly the same as smoking tobacco, which is not allowed at all in any public spaces. Not knowing where you live, I obviously can't say for sure what the reason would be.

What is the DIY part? Well, for most devices and accessories it is pretty much exactly as you described. But there is also a very diverse market for atomizers (the term for tanks and other accessories that house the liquid) that allow the user to build their own coils instead of having to rely on factory built coil assemblies. When using these kinds of atomizers, there is an enormous range of options one can choose from. It ranges from things as simple as choosing different gauges or types of wire, to very complex coil building that requires special tools, technique, and skill. You can further customize coils by choosing the type of wick material to use in the coil. Wicks can be silica, cotton, rayon, ekowool, hemp, and even more unexpected things like ceramic, steel mesh or braided steel, or even quartz crystal.

On top of that, it is also very easy to acquire all the ingredients and measuring tools one needs to make their own e-liquids. I mix all of my own liquids, and frequently experiment with different flavor combinations.

All of these DIY options and online ordering have allowed me to be able to continue my hobby without ever having to put up with the kind of people I talked about before, and do it relatively cheaply.

And for someone who started out here saying I'm not good at talking to new people, I sure seem to be talking a lot. o.O

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