There’s no way that I’m the only one that feels that this smartphone app epidemic that is Pokemon Go is getting a little out of hand.
I recently went to the beach and we started playing Pokemon go on our way from the parking lot to the beach; all the while my friend is explaining to me how the game works. He told me that depending if you’re close to the water, you can catch water Pokemon and because we’re near a poke stop, we can spin to win free poke balls. 20 seconds into the game, 5 different people came up to us about their current poke story. Things like:
“Hey man, I just caught kazekachu”
“Hey we just hatched a charizode-mander earlier today, it was pretty awesome.”
I’m all like wow that’s cool and all.. but do I really care?… No. not really.
Like sure. If i’m at the beach for 7 hours and I forgot to bring my camera, kan-jam, my book, and if the water is brick cold like it always is in CT beaches, yeah i’ll get up and walk around and try to catch these things. But when I look up. There are literally hundreds of kids with their phone out in their hands walking aimlessly around trying to catch the same kazekachu they’ve caught 10 times already.
As i’m having this conversation with my friend, a mom sitting and reading a book at least 25 feet away chimes in and tells us that her husband and 2 kids left her to catch their own separate Pokemons. And that there are people in her town that set up camp around churches at midnight trying to catch these things and it’s becoming somewhat of a hazard.
Black Lives Matter. Dallas. Baton Rouge. We’re literally amidst a 21st century civil war and yet, we’re more occupied with:
trying to catch a rare Pokemon at Central Park. (a la http://www.cnet.com/news/watch-the-craziness-that-happens-when-a-rare-pokemon-appears-in-central-park/)
Imagine the progress we’d make if those random encounters at the beach were about topics that affect our actual lives.
“Hey man can you believe what happened in Dallas, I just donated to the families of the cops that were murdered.”
I get it. Everyone has different backgrounds. It’s taboo to talk about politics and current events with complete strangers and a smartphone app is politically neutral and safe for everyone to play. Is it though? By playing the game, your entire electronic footprint is exposed.
“Any app with full account access can “see and modify nearly all information in your Google Account,” according to Google’s My Account privacy controls. The app can’t change passwords, delete accounts, or make Google Wallet payments, but it can see the contents of Gmail, Google Docs, Google Drive and Google Calendar.”
. . . . . . How is a discussion about the civil-race-war that your kids are exposed to somehow more taboo than allowing Niantic Inc. have access to your kids soccer game schedule and every attachment on your gmail account.
The mechanics of the game are entertaining I must admit. I am an active user. I just evolved a Pokemon into a bigger version of that same Pokemon. And truthfully, I enjoyed candy crush more when that was an epidemic. But even then, I wouldn’t drive and crush, run across the park to capture a new candy or allow it to dominate my Facebook feed.