The above ad, for the medical marijuana-reviewing site Weedmaps, was supposed to begin playing on a Times Square video billboard Tuesday. Weedmaps had approval from Neutron Media, the company that owns and operates the space, but when representatives went to see the looping advertisement this week, it wasn’t playing. CBS, whose logo appears on the billboard, had intervened, pulling the spot for legal review.
“I was surprised, but not shocked,” Justin Hartfield, Weedmaps CEO, told Mashable regarding the network’s decision. “The creative was really tame, especially by our standards.
It wouldn’t be the first time the space featured a weed-friendly ad: NORML ran a pro-legalization ad on the 42nd Street Billboard in 2010 after some squabbling with CBS. There’s no word on when Weedmaps’ ad will run, or whether it will run it all, but Hartfield has high hopes. “I’m cautiously optimistic that CBS is going to do the right thing, however, if they don’t we’re going to explore other options,” he said. “This is America and people still want money, just like people still want weed.”