Pokémon Go poses a threat to safety

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Pokémon Go has received national attention — in more than one way. On one end, it has captured the imaginations of nostalgic fans who are now able to catch their own Pokémon. On the other, it has made headlines, resulting in car crashes, robberies and even murder.

Sisters senior Maggie Kratzer and freshman Sheila have firsthand experience with the dangers of Pokémon Go. While Maggie was driving, Sheila gave her directions to the elusive Pikachu. The game claimed he was only three steps away, so Sheila directed Maggie to turn left.

As Maggie turned the wheel, she nearly missed sight of the car coming her way.

“I got so caught up in the game and just wanted to catch the Pikachu,” Maggie said.

She ended up being able to avoid a collision and the siblings were safe; however, not everyone is as lucky. A controversial aspect of the game allows users to place a “lure” on a PokéStop. This is supposed to promise users a higher probability of finding Pokémon in the area. However, this feature has already been abused by people who have used lures to entice players to remote areas and rob them at gunpoint.

Yet another issue with PokéStops is the location they’ve been placed in.

Some PokéStops, such as a California rehab center with recovering sex offenders, pose a threat to the safety of the younger gamers. In an attempt to resolve such issues, states, such as New York, have decided to ban sex offenders from playing Pokémon Go. This is, specifically, in response to incidents in which players have lured gamers to certain locations for malicious purposes.

On Aug. 6, Calvin Riley, a 20-year-old baseball player, was shot and killed while playing Pokémon Go with his friends in Aquatic Park, San Francisco.

The incident has prompted national awareness to the dangers of the game as tragic incidents related to Pokémon Go continue to make headlines.


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