The meteoric rise of the smartphone game “Pokémon GO” isn’t all delightful Pokémon photos on social media. Some players have been robbed at Pokéstops, reportedly lured in by robbers who set up a Lure Module (of course). Others have walked into ponds while playing, unaware of their surroundings. And folks are finding Pokémon in less-than-appropriate places.
Now, several Pokéstops are being associated with places where gaming is — at best — disrespectful. Places like the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C., for instance:
We welcome & encourage visitors to use technology to engage w/our exhibitions & programs while being respectful of our role as a memorial.
— US Holocaust Museum (@HolocaustMuseum) July 12, 2016
And Arlington National Cemetery:
We do not consider playing “Pokemon Go” to be appropriate decorum on the grounds of ANC. We ask all visitors to refrain from such activity.
— Arlington Cemetery (@ArlingtonNatl) July 12, 2016
Or perhaps your house is a Gym? There’s a simple solution: report the location to the game’s developer!
It will assuredly take time for the folks at Niantic to sort through all the tickets they’re getting at the moment — the game is outrageously popular, and Niantic is having a hard enough time keeping it online that it’s not releasing the game worldwide until further notice.
Niantic made a game very similar to “Pokémon GO” as its previous game; it’s called “Ingress.” The locations of Pokéstops and Gyms in “Pokémon GO” are pulled from that game, and there used to be a submission form where you could submit potential locations for use in “Ingress.”
According to Niantic CEO John Hanke in an interview with Game Informer, that ability could make its way to “Pokémon GO,” but it will take time. “We just had so many submissions worldwide and it was a huge burden to process them. We felt like we needed to put that on pause and we’ve been working on a crowd-sourced, user-voting solution so that we can re-enable submissions and with the help of users process new ones,” he said, in reference to “Ingress.”
In the meantime, Hanke told our colleagues at Business Insider that customisation of some form is coming to Pokéstops and Gyms in the near future.