July 19, 2016
Pokémon Go, a mobile phone app, has taken the world by storm but are players taking it too far?
The role-playing game uses your phone’s GPS and uses your location and augmented reality to impose Pokémon characters on your screen and overlay them on top of what you see directly in front of you. “The game is centered on the concept of the Pokémon battle, similar to that of the video games,” according to Wikia. “The object of the game is to knock out six of the opponent’s Pokémon.”
The game has taken players from inside their homes and into the streets in huge numbers, all in the name of fun. But some people aren’t laughing or having fun at all with this new game phenomenon. In fact, the phenomenon is creating public safety fears including pedestrians being severely distracted and trespassing that can lead to arrests or worse.
For many gamers there seem to be no personal boundaries as to how far they will go, or onto who’s property they will tread to acquire their next fictional Pokémon character. While playing Pokémon Go a Frenchmen trespassed onto an Indonesian military base and was detained.
The 27 year old, Romain Pierre, was arrested and later let go, when authorities realized he had unintentionally trespassed unto the military base while hunting down Pokémon.
Although many believe the game could boost tourism to the city, according to The Guardian, security officials are very concerned that Pokémon could induce real security threats.
The United States is having their own issues with Pokémon Go. Safety warnings from the U.S. Military Joint Base Lewis-McChord, near Tacoma, Washington, have been released after the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum saw its fair share of Pokémon Go trespassers.
“DO NOT chase Pokémon into controlled or restricted areas, office buildings, or homes on base.”
As of now, no plans by the Department of Defense have been made to impose game guidelines around the Pentagon but they are asking players to be mindful when crossing roads and parking lots saying, “It’s a good idea to look up, away from your phone and both ways before crossing streets.”
Wow, did the Defense Department have to remind adults to be mindful of their surroundings? A new game has suddenly seemed to make the world lose their senses.
At some point the Defense Department may step in to protect its boundaries, and others, from the carelessness actions of Pokémon players if public and military concerns continue.
It will then be Pokémon Gone, game over, in many public areas.
By Lorra B.