Alex Birlo on September 6, 2019

Pokemon GO and 4 Million Dollars

Back when Niantic released Pokemon GO in 2016, various news sources were chuck-full of stories about players trespassing on private property in order to catch a rare pokemon or ones that made weird discoveries – like a dead body in a river – while playing Pokemon GO.

Today’s story lasted for 3 years, all the ways from the very release of the game.

2016 and the launch of Pokemon GO

Around that same time as the game was getting all that attention, 12 people came together to initiate a class-action lawsuit against Niantic, claiming the game is encouraging people to trespass on private property.

One of the people involved even said several people had knocked on his door to ask permission to catch a pokemon in his backyard. And another person who owned an oceanfront condo in Florida had hundreds of people walking through and in his property, staring into their phones and not noticing their surroundings – because they were catching pokemon – at all times of the day.

Finally… a solution?

The lawsuit had lasted for three years and now is finally resolved! The dispute was settled with Niantic not accepting liability, because there is no clear precedent regarding how virtual items correlate with property law.

Though Niantic will pay 4 million dollars to cover the legal fees and a small amount of 1,000 dollars to each of the plaintiffs.

As part of the dispute settlement, Niantic will also launch a website through which people can send them reports of players trespassing on private property. And has claimed that they will be resolving 95% of all reports within 15 days.


Of course, the player count of the game had fallen drastically in the last 3 years Pokemon GO was out, and probably not even half of the “trespassing reports” are going to be that serious.

But none the less, there are some crazy pokemon trainers out there and trespassing is creepy, to say the least. And this issue has to be addressed in one way or another.

If we also take into consideration the rise in player count and revenue for Niantic from Pokemon GO after the “Team GO Rocket” update in August, there are bound to be more of those reports in the coming weeks if not months.

ABSOLUTELY – gotta catch ’em all


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