This giant mob of people on the Santa Monica pier all celebrated catching a dragonair. #PokemonGO pic.twitter.com/CsAOS2ag3f
— Travis Gafford (@TravisGafford) July 12, 2016
On the one hand, healthful exercise out in the fresh air…
… New Zealand police have issued multiple warnings about the addictive app after people swam and kayaked out to a “Poké gym” in the middle of Oriental Bay in Wellington, gathered outside public toilets at night, and turned up at the headquarters of Hells Angels in Whanganui – all in the name of the game.
The New Zealand Herald reported that a man who answered the gate at the Hells Angels club did not know what Pokémon Go was and told players to “go talk to the police”…
On the other hand, still a few bugs in the system:
… According to the Washington Post, three places within the D.C. Holocaust Museum are PokéStops, or real-world locations where players can collect items to be used in the game.
Andrew Hollinger, a spokesperson for the Holocaust Museum, told BuzzFeed News that playing the game “in a memorial dedicated to the victims of Nazism is extremely inappropriate.”…
The Holocaust Museum isn’t the only questionable game location: the 9/11 Memorial is a PokéStop too…
Also, Gizmodo warns of malware:
Security firm Proofpoint is now cautioning those who couldn’t wait for an official app store release, saying that one specific APK was modified to install a backdoor called DroidJack. The app is different form the official version, but is close enough to fool anyone who may have picked it up…
And the Guardian says Senator Al Franken has questions:
… The lawmaker wrote a letter to Niantic Inc’s John Hanke on Tuesday with a list of demands for further information regarding the app’s privacy settings.
“I am concerned about the extent to which Niantic may be unnecessarily collecting, using, and sharing a wide range of users’ personal information without their appropriate consent,” he wrote.
Franken, who sits on the Senate subcommittee on privacy, technology, and the law, accused the company of collecting users’ information and potentially sharing it with third-party service providers. He highlighted that most users are children and the app’s default setting is to automatically collect data, with users having to specifically “opt-out”…
The app was immediately controversial because it asked new users to provide “all access” to their Google accounts. It later became clear that this was simply clumsy wording and the app only had limited access to password information…
Franken, a former comedian on Saturday Night Live, gave Hanke until 12 August to respond to his request.
You know we are in for countless stories about people playing Pokemon GO at the Olympics and the conventions, right?
— Bob Schooley (@Rschooley) July 12, 2016
I realized the source of my anxiety the other day: I’m living in my own nightmare.
Major Major Major Major
Well, at least we know where so many place their priorities. I forget, is this supposed to be reassuring or not?
Still, I suppose it was about time for someone learned how to monetize and corporatize flash mobs.
Villago Delenda Est
You know, this was conceived just as mindless fun.
But it seems that already there are those who would use it for something other than fun.
The human race sucks.
I think I saw some folk playing this today in Exposition Park. I didn’t see the shuttle(I didn’t realize you needed to have a time reservation, poor planning on my part), but did see the external fuel tank. I ended up being tricked into walk though U$C(belch!) and walked from the Civic Center to Echo Park lake and back to Union Station though Chinatown. I got some great pics.
The volvo commercial series came up a couple floors down…
…and I don’t think that’s his wife driving. I think it’s the daughter and the wife has passed (that’s why the Dad is fingering the ring).
Weird fucking commercial.
ETA: …and what the fuck is a dragonair? Is it so rare you have to go someplace special like the pier to get it?
ETA2: Upstairs, Bill, you have to see the shuttle; well worth the wait (note, I used to be in Aerospace so I could be very, very biased).
That is what I first thought. However, there’s a followup commercial where the bearded gentleman talks about how no one is prepared for one’s own daughter’s wedding.
ETA: I just need to make a reservation and head down there again, no problem. I never worked in the industry, but growing up many of my friend’s parents did(my dad worked for the Navy on making the little missiles). I also heard(and felt) during the mid 60’s the tests of the various engines for the Saturn V at the Santa Susana Test Field(I grew up in 1000 Oaks).
If anyone is available, I just put a big post in the Moderation Dungeon in the Trump Rally thread.
This one happened just round the corner from us
Although I loved this:
Carly Anderson, community engagement manager for turbine owner Meridian Energy, confirmed the council had to open the gate to let some people out.
“We recommend that those who feel they’ve gotta catch ’em all do so before 5pm,” she said.
I’m not a regular Pokemon player, and I have barely touched the app – cute, but doesn’t drive me. However, I know enough to provide a little context. Yes, Dragonair is one of the rarest and strongest Pokemon in other games. This game is procedurally generated from Google Maps, so landmarks tend to become important spots with no descrimination for what the landmark is. The funniest result of that is that Westboro Baptist Church is a gym (fighting arena) and someone put a clefairy Pokemon named LoveIsLove in it.
Ah, so reminiscent of the flash mob stories, but with an update and a twist.
The Missouri AG is investigating some kind of scam connected to the game. That’s all I know about it, and more than I want to know about it. In truth, I don’t get video games, never have. Always found life to be far more stimulating.
@OzarkHillbilly: Don’t panic.
@SectionH: I don’t care.
Can’t wait for Grand Theft Auto GO.
@Keith G: Sigh. I admit I’m pretty in awe of the flashmobs without the tech.
I’m questioning the mental health of the GOP idiots working on their party’s platform.
Trump bots? Scary. Filled with so much hatred.
…Brought to you by Darrell Issa.
@Baud: I thought they’d already made that movie.
For those not familiar, Niantic has a long history with the intelligence gathering arms of the US government and had received money from (I believe it was NSA but it might have been a different 3-letter) for work done on geo-locating software. I believe some of their executives also used to work for 3-letter agencies. The app gives Niantic full access to your camera, microphone and location (and just about everything else for inexplicable reasons). So, while I don my tin foil hat, imagine someone wanted to create a ‘google maps street view’ of the interior of thousands of buildings around the world. Suppose they wanted to see where people went and how they interacted. Millions of pictures all geo-tagged coming in every day with information about who else was around and perhaps what you were talking about and texting.
I am not paranoid but I am beginning to wonder if I should be
@Baud: I can’t wait for Facebook GO. That’s where you travel to where your friends are and talk face to face.
Totally weird, amirite?
The local news has done three separate stories over the last two nights about people playing the game. It’s all harmless fun until someone attempts to breach Augusta National to catch something.
I’d rather watch fly electrocution videos.
Or cat videos.
@?BillinGlendaleCA: ‘tube win for me tonight. We’re safe local (CA 53), but it’s our County too, and we’re gonna work for probably lost cause, unelecting the car thief. Because Mr S thinks the House is in reach.
If it’s gonna be a wave, we have to work for every House district. Even the Issa ick’s one.
Bleh…all day yesterday felt like a long hangover (I haven’t had a hangover in a couple of years, as I almost never drink alcohol any more) since 2am. I finally feel a little better today. Headwise, at least…I still have that not-good feeling in my chest that too much alcohol brings about (but again, with no alcohol)..I suspect I overdid my fluid pull on Monday dialysis, but even so, I’m kind of glad to have woken up this morning; feeling as bad as I did for no apparent reason started to make me paranoid that this was one of those cases where someone feels ill suddenly and then as suddenly has a massive coronary (aka “Trump Fantasy B”)
Then it is friggin hilarious!
@Poopyman: That’ll never work.
Good Morning ?, Everyone ?
@Schlemazel Khan: Oh yeah. Since they keep that place locked up tighter than Fort Knox, it will be hilarious.
@rikyrah: Good morning to you!
And everyone else.
@Poopyman: that made me LOL.
@Keith P.: hope you’re doing better today.
Meet the Alaskan cellist who broke barriers by playing Istanbul’s ferries
The gated resort i work at apparently has these critters to catch and we’ve got people sneaking up from the public beach to play the game. Being the revenue mongers they are, management immediately wondered whether they should call their lawyers to see if they could demand some compensation from the game manufacturers. I guess it’s only a matter of time before we’re hunting down Slurp-eez at 7-11 – corporate sponsored Pokemen are the logical next step, right?
I wonder if Techdirt.com has looked into this. I read a lot of websites some geeky. I know techies who read all the fine print of app permission – and then start screaming.
Seems like I’ve read some of the sneaky ways NSA wants even more information on everybody, and the can not even deal with the massive date they have squirreled away in Utah.
Fight for privacy and then open up to what?
Cat videos are better – now cats are honest about world domination and spying. You know how cats like to join you in the bathroom?
That game is a urban thing.
Fun to watch people making fools of themselves.
Cat videos rule. Or corgi puppies.
Both of my dogs do that as well.
@Phylllis: This is some stupid fucking bullshit. They are having to ASK idiots not to play this shit in Arlington National Cemetery and the Holocaust Museum.
@Barb2: I believe the GOP platform also includes such gems as overturning marriage equality and approving “conversion therapy”. Sigh.
@satby: A little (headache is not nearly as bad and the acid reflux that inexplicably started up yesterday stopped. Still nauseous (threw up foam a few minutes ago) with my heart feeling like it’s fluttering. I just have to make it to dialysis so some medstaff can look at me; I’m just trying to avoid another ER visit since I’ve already had 2 in the last month (hip sprain followed by staph), and it can start to seem like hypochondria (even though I know whatever is currently hitting me is something real)
@rikyrah: Good morning to you!
@Schlemazel Khan: Isn’t this Pokemon Go thing just a revised version of Ingress? I haven’t looked into it much, but it seems like the recent brouhaha about the permissions was a bug.
I don’t think the NSA and others want to have to sort though a mountain of data from a bunch of bored teenagers running around trying to catch sprites. Maybe having a hacked version that some of their spooks could use would be useful, but they’re already drowning in data that they can’t search effectively – adding more would seem to be counter-productive.
Just a guess though.
computer algorithms can make the cataloging and compilation much easier. Most of the would be done by computers, not perfect but close enough. They filter millions of digital communications a day this way now.
What would they collect the information for? They will let you know just as soon as they figure it out.
@Keith P.: having just completed my annual first aid training, i want to suggest you take yourself to your gp or the er asap. What you’re describing sounds a lot like angina or other cardiac problems. Ianad but nausea, heartburn and generalized hangover-like meh were the symptoms my father in law was having right before the docs ordered a triple bypass (he’s fine now fyi). yours might be down to stress or a touch of food poisoning, but better safe than sorry says i.
Also i hope it all clears up asap,is nothing worse than indigestion and that the rest of your week is wonderful.
@raven: A lot of people have no reverence for truly sacred spaces. When I visited the National Cathedral a couple of years ago, I was a little tempted to take photos of people standing right next to the signs clearly stating ‘No Photography inside Cathedral’…taking pictures.
The morning news from our close major city had the police sent to the big park at 1:30 am to empty it from 75-100 people chasing this Pokemon app. The park was closed earlier. My question is what could possibly happen running around in the dark with strangers and having the police to show up when they may be needed elsewhere.
@Frankensteinbeck: Dragonair evolves from Dratini and evolves to Dragonite. 3-stage evolution pokemon end up being stronger in this game for a variety of reasons, and usually require catching upwards of 50 of the stage 1 and stage 2 pokemon in order to evolve (unless you find them in the wild, which is actually rare).
My sense is that their map database just gathers up a combination of local monuments (sculptures, paintings, parks are also included), as well as user submitted monuments from their prior game, Ingress, which essentially served as a proof of concept test for this. The ideal way to fix this is by adding an opt-out pipeline for business, but software development isn’t quite that fast, and I’d wager that their customer support and servers are on constant fire (I play, and it’s sometimes impossible to login).
As far as playing at inappropriate locations goes – what non-players should understand is that rare pokemon aren’t absconded away in these locations. The bulk of pokemon you will find in the wild are common. For instance, where I live, I’ve caught over 200 “Doduo”, an extremely common pokemon. You just keep catching them for game progression. There’s no real reason for people to be going into national memorials and such for rare pokemon, and what we have here is a case of people not behaving responsibly while playing or using the game as an excuse to act like idiots.
As someone who has some experience with mobile front and back-end development, the Google permissions thing on iPhone is likely a mistake, but alarming that a non-mail application could even get that volume of permissions. For those who are worried about camera data being streamed – you can turn the camera off (Augmented Reality mode off).
The backlash to this game has begun in earnest, and I doubt it’ll be around for more than two weeks, at least not in the volume we’ve witnessed. Just remember that games are often gateways to using enterprise technology in better and more productive ways. It’ll benefit us all, in the end.
Yet another reason am beyond glad to not have a cell phone.
@Baud: The thread, it is yours.
@Villago Delenda Est:
Yup. I have enjoyed this game quite a bit with my kids while being completely oblivious to the potential dangers outside of the obvious getting hit by a car because you are not paying attention to where you are walking.
In related news, I took a picture of a guy who stopped in the middle of a turn to catch Pokemon. People need to be better.
@Schlemazel Khan: Been telling people for years now that
Free for use as a rotating tag line!
I have my security concerns about Pokemon Go.
I also worry it’s burning up my phone’s battery life. Dammit! It’s at 59 percent ALREADY?!?!?!
And I’m tired of my library having nothing but Pidigitys. I don’t care if we got real-life Ospreys outside nesting in our park, I want more WATER POKEM… why are you looking at me like that?
Middle of what turn?
It’s Twitter. It’s all about the screaming.
I suspect you’re correct. A lot of what gets ID’d as “hangover” is IMO dehydration: to process ethanol through the kidneys extracts more water from the body than the drinks supply (viz. the classic Archie Bunker line, You can’t buy beer, you can only rent it).
Soon after I started traveling to Yerp I noticed distinct symptomatic commonalities between jet lag & hangover, & traced it to the fact that cabin air is dryer than a desert (refreshed from ambient air >30,000 ft that at -40F or so contains nearly no water vapor) & thus sucks the moisture right out of you. It’s why the travel experts tell you to avoid alcoholic beverages & instead load up on water or OJ in order to mitigate the effects of jet lag.
ETA: Sorry to hear (or maybe to finally wake up to the fact that) you’re dialyzing…though it beats the alternative if a kidney transplant is unavailable or not possible.
–WTF is my reply to Keith P. in moderation for?????
Villago Delenda Est
@Schlemazel Khan: This sounds like some of the plot elements of one of Charles Stross’ novels. People playing an espionage “game” are unwittingly gathering intelligence for a three letter agency.
Villago Delenda Est
@Uncle Cosmo: No reason. FYWP being FYWP.
This whole Pokemon Go thing reminds me of what idiots a lot of people are. I keep trying to forget this but modern life on the tubes forces me to remember.
Why did the Guardian feel that was relevant? Weird.
On the one hand, getting people into the holocaust museum seems like a good thing. On the other hand, probably pretty annoying for those who were there to actually learn about the Holocaust. As for punking the Hells Angels…well played!
@I’mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet: This is 100% correct. It’s the same company as Ingress, and they just reskinned the game and stripped out most of the features.
But hey… old folks gotta old. So it’s scary because reasons.
Play Pokemon Go through the Red Light District and your balls will catch the rarest of things.