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Pokemon GO's trespassing lawsuit in the US has been settled

Published: 13:59, 04 December 2018
Three different weather conditions in Pokemon GO
Pokemon GO - dynamic weather system

It seems like Niantic didn't really take the US property laws into account when they launched Pokemon GO because players hunting Pokemon have managed to upset quite a few property owners, who in turn sought legal action against the dev.

You had to be living under a rock not to have heard about Pokemon GO, especially how it came up with a clever way to get people to exercise and go outside. Unfortunately, it seems there's another side to this coin since not all locations were that appropriate.

One Jeffery Marder from New Jersey, USA, claims that he's had five Pokemon trainers on his doorstep in 2016 asking for permission to catch Pokemon on his land. Needless to say, Marder wasn't particularly happy about it so he took legal action against Niantic.

According to the legal documentation, Pokemon GO's creator has been accused of encouraging "unwanted incursions" onto private property. Moreover, the "continuing invasion" not only prevented owners from "use and enjoyment" of their property, the case also alleges that Niantic have been "unjustly enriched" by players trying to catch Pokemon on other people's land.

Note however that Marder is not the only plaintiff in question, because he's been joined by more aggrieved landowners, all of which are listed in the aforementioned documents. In their anti-Pokemon GO case, they argue that the distress they suffered entitles them to damages from Niantic.

Unfortunately, the details of the settlement with Niantic haven't been made public, so we're not sure whether or how much Pokemon GO's maker had to fork out. It does go to show that AR games need to take more care in the planning stage, so that they do not invite the wrath of landowners who want to be left alone.

Niantic Pikachu wearing a festive hat standing next to a Pokemon GO logo Pokemon GO - Pokemon Day

Niantic have already run into trouble with public property in the US and had to remove several Pokemon GO locations shortly after its launch back in 2016. We're talking about the Holocaust Museum and Hiroshima Memorial in Washington, which most certainly aren't appropriate Pokemon hunting grounds.

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