Russians exploited Pokémon Go in their efforts to influence United States politics


According to a CNN report, the Internet Research Agency-Russia's online dirty tricks squad-included the smash mobile game in a wider campaign to incite hatred and racial division within America.

CNN making this discovery revealed that they may have been the only ones to have discovered the page, as they could find no evidence that anyone had even participated in the contest, writing...

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While everyone is still waiting anxiously for the next big in-game event for Pokemon Go, Niantic has given its players something to do.

At one point, the Tumblr page for Don't Shoot Us was advertising a contest encouraging Pokemon Go players to hunt for Pokemon at sites where police brutality had occurred and name the Pokemon they caught after the victims. "A post promoting the contest showed a Pokémon named "Eric Garner", for the African-American man who died after being put in a chokehold by a New York Police Department officer". CNN uncovered YouTube, Tumblr, Instagram, and Twitter pages for Don't Shoot Us as well.

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Russian Federation used Pokémon Go and social media platforms to try and influence the 2016 presidential election. If Pokemon Go players completed those two tasks, they could send a screenshot to an email in return for supposed prizes, including Amazon gift cards. This "contest" required people to take screen shots from their phone and share over other social networks, not within our game.

"It's clear from the images shared with us by CNN that our game assets were appropriated and misused in promotions by third parties without our permission", a spokesperson for Niantic, the game developer behind Pokemon Go, said in a statement to CNN Money. The Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts have since been suspended but their YouTube and Tumblr pages appear to still be active.

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