Hey, have you heard of “Pokémon Go”? Who am I kidding, of course you have! The game is a cultural phenomenon in every sense of the word; just go outside to your popular local parks and you’ll see what I mean.
While this may be the case in the U.S., an official BBC News report suggests that Iran, on the other hand, has just banned Pokémon Go for everyone.
The Middle Eastern nation utilizes a government body called the “High Council of Virtual Spaces” to regulate online activity, and apparently apps as well. BBC writes that last month,
“Iranian authorities were waiting to see to what extent the game’s creators would co-operate with them before making a decision on banning it.”
Now, it seems, they have reached a decision and a very strong one at that.
The reasoning? Unspecified “security concerns.” It seems Pokémon Go’s new update telling players to be aware of their surroundings and to not drive isn’t enough for Iran’s High Council.
While Iran is the first country to outright ban the mobile game, BBC continues that it is not the first to take security measures against the game. They state,
“Indonesia has banned police officers from playing the game while on duty, and a French player was arrested last month after straying on to a military base while trying to catch Pokémon. A leading Saudi cleric said a fatwa (religious ruling) issued against an earlier Pokémon card game also applied to the new mixed-reality app.”
In addition to this heap of regulations, the state of New York issued a statement that they would ban approximately 3,000 registered sex offenders from playing the app. The goal is to keep children, a large percentage of people playing Pokémon, safe.
One can only speculate on how the world might continue to respond to the cultural-changing goliath that is Pokémon Go.