It has been over 3 months since the smash hit mobile game, Pokemon GO was first released worldwide. Since then, the augmented reality (AR) game has managed to garner over 500 million downloads on the Google Play Store in a short period of time. With millions of players around the world thronging public places such as parks, beaches and even places of worship, local authorities haven’t been really pleased with the game makers. Now, authorities in the Netherlands are taking Niantic Labs, the company behind Pokemon GO, to court after it failed to stop countless of players from flocking to the country’s protected beaches.
The vast beaches of Kijkduin, south of the Hague, has seen a massive influx of visitors who are Pokemon trainers since Pokemon GO was launched in the Netherlands. This has caused authorities to raise concerns that such a huge volume of people thronging the beaches daily may potentially cause damage to the dunes surrounding the area. The beaches of Kijkduin are also known to locals as the Pokemon capital of the Netherlands. Hague authorities have been trying to contact Niantic since mid-August but the firm has not responded. Due to this, the authorities had no other choice but to take the matter to court. The hearing for the case will be held before a court in the Hague on October 11. However, the municipality has stated that Kijkduin will remain an attractive spot for Pokemon trainers but damage to protected areas will be able to be limited and residents of the area will face less trouble from Pokemon trainers.
On top of that, the Hague municipality has said that it wants to ban Pokemon’s in protected areas and in the streets from 11:00 pm to 7:00 am. The Hague is not the only local authority to request Niantic to remove Pokemon’s and Pokestops from its local landmarks, as authorities in Poland and Japan have done the same. In the latest update to the game, memorials in Hiroshima as well as Berlin Holocaust memorials, have disappeared as landmarks in the game. The game has also been banned from being played in Iran, and authorities in the US have banned the game from being played in the US Holocaust museum.