Niantic has settled in the US a three-year smoldering lawsuit with twelve individuals. They had filed a lawsuit against VR game maker Pokemon Go for bothering players who entered their property to hunt for monsters. The lawsuit had already been filed in 2016. This year, the game appeared as an app for iOS and Android. Soon the download numbers reached records. Pokemon-Go players populated parks and public spaces, but partly also for private reasons.
The game, which is still widespread, is about looking for virtual game pieces in certain places. They often visit places in the real world, which are marked in the game by so-called Pokestops. If such a stop is in the immediate vicinity of a private property, this can lead, in particular on certain occasions, to a number of players moving in or on the properties.
New complaint system announced
According to The Register, Niantic agreed to settle the dispute by introducing a new complaints system. The manufacturer is already accepting requests to remove a Pokestop. This system will now apparently be revised. The Register also reports that Niantic intends to process 95 percent of complaints in the next 15 days. New Pokestops should no longer be created in the immediate vicinity of detached houses, but at least 40 meters apart. In the case of complaints, the company wants to remove existing stops.
To settle the lawsuit, Niantic pays four million dollars. However, according to the report, the twelve plaintiffs receive only a small part of it, namely $ 1,000; the remainder is accounted for by the lawyer’s fees. Although the judge had not accepted Niantic’s argument that he was not responsible for the actions of the players, he also rejected the complaints of the landowners.
Monsters must stay outside
From the beginning, the monster hunters were not welcome everywhere. Some memorial saw the dignity of the place hampered by hordes of Pokémon hunters. In a Washington Post report, for example, the museum spokesman for the Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC commented critically: “Playing the game in a museum is not appropriate, it is a place of remembrance of the victims of National Socialism.” Even churches sometimes responded strictly to the Pokemon hunt in the church. That’s why a young Russian was imprisoned for five years.