How many times are we going to have to use the word “watchdog” this week? I believe we’re on the third now, and this time, we’re not talking about law enforcement creepers or No Man’s Sky’s alleged false advertising: We’re talking about people who couldn’t catch ’em all.
According to a report on Polygon last night, 72 people filed Pokemon Go related complaints with the Federal Trade Commission in the few months since the game’s launch. The publication cited the results of its own Freedom of Information Act request made to the FTC to reveal complaints that ranged from anger over outages to anger over the crackdown on third-party apps that made it difficult to track Pokemon. The “largest number,” says Polygon, “are tied to customers complaining about the money they spent and what they received for that cash.” There are also allegations from people whose property fell under siege from Pokemon players, including an Oregon hospital that was struggling with gamers who were “descending on [its] halls and asking to go into private areas to take pictures and get their game points.”
Perhaps the most convincing complaint, however, is the one alleging that Niantic has been deliberately deceptive when it comes to revealing the full extent of user data it can and will access. “This game is aimed at children and very aggressively deceives players into revealing potentially incredibly private information,” it read.