Pokmon Go: US holocaust museum asks players to stay away

Memorial to victims of Nazis is designated as a Pokstop but officials point out that playing game on the grounds is extremely inappropriate

The US Holocaust Memorial Museum and Arlington National Cemetery have requested that smartphone users refrain from catching Pokmon when they visit.

Like many other landmarks, the museum and the military cemetery are featured in the popular new Pokmon Go game.

The museum is a Pokstop a place where players can get free in-game items and online users say the cemetery also contains Pokstop.

Andrew Hollinger, communications director for the museum, said officials were trying to have it removed from the game. He said playing the game inside a memorial to victims of Nazism is extremely inappropriate.

At Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, spokesman Stephen Smith said the move was pre-emptive rather than to address a problem theyre already seeing.

Playing games such as Pokmon Go on these hallowed grounds would not be deemed appropriate, cemetery officials said in a statement.

He said the cemeterys layout made it difficult to know whether an individual visitor is playing the game on his phone or using the cemeterys own app to navigate landmarks in a respectful manner.

Game developers Niantic Labs did not immediately respond to The Washington Posts question of whether it could stop Pokmon from popping up inside the museum.

A Dutch hospital has also issued an appeal to over-zealous fans of the game, asking them not to hunt the fictitious monsters in the building after several players ventured into restricted areas.

There is indeed a sick Pokmon at AMC, but well look after him well. Please dont visit him, the Academic Medical Centre (AMC) in Amsterdam tweeted with a picture of Pokmon character Pikachu surrounded by tissues.

AMC (@AMC_NL) July 11, 2016

Er is een zieke pokmon in het AMC – wij zullen goed voor m zorgen. We stellen het op prijs als je m niet bezoekt. pic.twitter.com/u8RACvGZgp

Pokmon Go mania is sweeping the globe since it was released on Friday. The game is based on a Nintendo title that debuted 20 years ago and has now been adapted for the mobile internet age.

By Monday, Pokmon Go had been downloaded millions of times, topping rankings at official online shops for applications tailored for smartphones powered by Apple or Google-backed Android software.

The game uses GPS and mapping capabilities in mobile phones to let players roam the real world to find Pokstops stocked with supplies and hunt cartoon character monsters to capture and train for battles.

Since yesterday (Monday) weve noticed young people walking around the building with mobile phones into places theyre not supposed to be, AMC spokeswoman Loes Magnin told AFP.

Some mobile-wielding monster hunters even found themselves in the hospitals basement which houses a television studio for childrens programmes in the hospital and where clothes are sterilised.

Patients need quiet and rest, Magnin said.

Associated Press and Agence France-Presse contributed to this report

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/jul/13/pokemon-go-us-holocaust-museum-asks-players-to-stay-away