E-cigarettes were invented back in 2003, but it took a while for them to become part of the public consciousness. When e-cigs first became popular, people everywhere were delighted. Smokers now had a way to keep on enjoying a nicotine hit without the fear of developing fatal diseases such as lung cancer while non-smokers didn’t have to put up with toxic cigarette smoke. These days, e-cigs are catching traditional cigarettes up in terms of popularity and if you take a look around any public space, you are more likely to see people vaping than puffing on a tobacco-based cigarette.
So you might assume given the popularity of e-cigarettes that the media would be keen to promote them as a healthy and safe alternative to traditional cigarettes. Sadly this is not the case. E-cigs have gone from being an exciting alternative to tobacco cigarettes to a suspicious device, unregulated by the FDA and therefore dangerous. So why is the e-cigarette industry continually being bashed by the media?
Is Vaping Dangerous?
According to some sections of the media, vaping is highly dangerous. Unfortunately, this has turned a lot of people against e-cigarettes, which when you consider just how dangerous normal cigarettes are, is hardly a good thing. The changes seemed to have come about in 2014, for it is around then than a stream of negative stories regarding e-cigarettes began to appear in the media. Why this would be the case is not straightforward, since there are any numbers of scientific studies available that highlight just how safe e-cigarettes are.
Scientific Research Proves E-Cigs Are Safe
For example, research carried out by the Australian Catholic University and University of Melbourne has indicated that switching to e-cigarettes is strongly associated with reduction or cessation of smoking tobacco cigarettes. A further study conducted by leading cardiologist, Dr Konstantinos Farsalinos, found that e-liquids used in flavoured e-cigarettes were much safer than tobacco cigarettes. So to summarise, scientists have found that vaping an e-cig is 99% safer than puffing away on a tobacco cigarette.
Common sense dictates that vaping an e-cigarette is much healthier than smoking tobacco cigarettes, but the media doesn’t appear to take this view. For the most part, stories relating to scientific studies proving how safe e-cigarettes are don’t appear all that often, whereas headlines claiming e-cigarettes are dangerous appear far more often.
Is the Media In Bed with the Big Tobacco Companies?
When you begin to look a bit more closely at the situation, it soon starts to become clear. The Master Settlement Agreement was put in place in 1998. The agreement meant that the big tobacco companies were obliged to pay 46 U.S. states billions of dollars to fund anti-smoking campaigns, as part of a compensation package to refund taxpayer money that had already been spent on the medical costs of patients with smoking related diseases.
The Master Settlement Agreement
With so much money involved, it wasn’t long before the greedy bankers decided they wanted a piece of the action. Wall Street offered to give the States money up front, which would be paid back (with interest) as revenue trickled in from the tobacco companies, as per the Master Settlement Agreement.
Unfortunately for everyone involved in these shady deals, the increasing popularity of e-cigs has led to fewer smokers and therefore no huge payouts from the big tobacco companies. Those states that borrowed the money from Wall Street were not in a position to repay their loans with interest, and defaulted on their payments. As a result, the big tobacco companies have started to get involved with the media in an attempt to crackdown on e-cigs and boost tobacco revenue. As a result, we are being bombarded with stores about how ‘dangerous’ vaping is and how e-cigarettes are ‘bad for our health’.
Tobacco Companies Lobbying in the Media
These stories are not usually backed up by scientific facts, and if they are, the data is skewed in some way. The reason for this is now obvious. The big tobacco companies don’t want people to give up smoking. Their livelihood is at stake and they can’t afford to lose a big chunk of the market share to e-cigarettes, hence the media ‘smear’ campaign.
It is hard not to be sucked in by the negative stories that are so prolific in today’s media. There is so much misinformation out there that we can’t blame ordinary people for believing the lies. It’s only when you read between the lines and gain a better understanding of what is going on in the background that you start to see the true picture. Unfortunately for our long-term health, the tobacco companies are not interested in the truth. They would rather we continue smoking tobacco cigarettes, regardless of the health implications associated with tobacco smoking, and so millions of people continue to be affected by preventable diseases when there is a much safer solution: e-cigarettes.