Pokemon Go has taken the world by storm.
In Singapore the government is studying the social impact after news of problems caused by the game in other countries (“Woman hit by truck in Japan’s first Pokemon Go death”, August 25).
In the United States, the Pentagon has clamped down on Pokemon Go. In Thailand, Buddhist temples and hospitals are no-go zones. Vietnam has banned the game at government and defence sites.
What about Singapore?
In Singapore’s free-market economy, the government position is always to let nature take its course. But authorities anywhere also have a responsibility to guard public safety and protect citizens.
Singapore authorities have declared government and national defence areas to be Pokemon no-go zones. These areas should now be expanded to include private or public housing, high-rise buildings with fall risk, and high-traffic areas with potential parking problems. There should also be no “PokeShops” or “lures” to attract unwanted crowds.
These are, however, only short-term measures. Governments should also be looking at potential long-term problems associated with so-called augmented reality and take preventative action now.
Teow Sing Teng
(From the Straits Times/ANN)