When it comes to electronic cigarettes, we have to stop and ask ourselves a couple of different questions from time to time. Honestly, there are some difficult conversations to be had about the state of the industry, and the effect that it can have on the outside world.
There are some more cynical people in the industry who feel that we are not actually making a massive difference, so much as putting a patch on a fundamentally broken society. The other end of that, is of course, that we are creating a brand new way of smoking.
It’s definitely interesting to take a look at some of the different concepts and cultures that have sprung up over the years, so let’s take a look at a couple of different viewpoints.
Glass Half Empty
Now, obviously, at one end of the scale, you’ve got the people who look at the glass as being half empty. These are people who genuinely feel that the electronic cigarette industry is not one which is helping anybody, so much is putting a patch on a very broken industry.
The general consensus for people who take this viewpoint is that there is a fundamental lack of accountability among everybody in the retail world. People go into shops and buy cigarettes for underage family members, people sell them on the streets, people use fake IDs, and there is some of this apathy that extends towards anybody who is trying to break the rules in a not so serious way.
Ultimately, a lot of people feel that there is a functionally broken attitude in society that people don’t respect rules and regulations. When someone is encountered in such a way that means they can’t do something, it usually drives them to do exactly that thing. There are quite a few people who think that until we address the fundamental problems in society, whenever going to get past this idea that any industry trying to do good is simply putting a plaster on the solution, and not fixing it.
Glass Half Full
On the other end of this, you do have the people who are more optimistic in their viewpoints. These are individuals who genuinely believe that when it comes to electronic cigarettes, there is some good to be done. They are the type of people who believe in the power of the industry, and that positive thinking and changing mentalities is the best way forward.
These are the types of people who will freely point to statistics and figures, they will look at official NHS backing as being an important stepping stone for the industry, and they will defend the good it can do. They are people who believe that ultimately, everybody can change if they have the sufficient tools required to do so.
Ultimately, these are the optimists of the industry, and they usually help to drive progress forward. They are the innovators, the experimenters, and the developers. They all believe very passionately in the strength and power of the electronic cigarette industry, and feel that it could be used for considerable good if the resources and attitudes of all the big players were suitably focused on one particular area at a time. They balance out the more negative and cynical viewpoints, which makes them a very powerful resource for engineering change.
At the end of the day, there is no right or wrong viewpoint, because a viewpoint is simply that. It is your opinion, and you are entitled to it, regardless of whether you believe that the electronic cigarette industry is one which ultimately does good, or one that does not.