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    Not Playing Around: Man Sues Pokemon GO for ‘Unwanted Incursions’ on Property

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    Pokemon GO took the world by storm last month, leading countless people to wander around their cities and towns in a tireless search for Japanese pocket monsters.

    But one New Jersey man is not as enthused about the game, as he filed a lawsuit against Nintendo and Niantic labs in California federal court. He said the companies encourage  "unwanted incursions" on private property with the game.

    As the suit claims, "Niantic has encouraged Pokémon GO’s millions of players to make unwanted incursions onto the properties of plaintiff and other members of the class—a clear and ongoing invasion of their use and enjoyment of their land from which defendants have profited and continue to profit."

    The lawsuit seeks to reach class action status, along with an injunction and possibly disgorgement, damages or other forms financial relief. Jeffrey Marder, the complainant, filed the suit after five people knocked on his door and asked if they could catch Pokemon in his yard.

    According to court papers, "At least five individuals knocked on plaintiff's door, informed plaintiff that there was a Pokemon in his backyard, and asked for access to plaintiff's backyard in order to 'catch' the Pokemon. Defendants have shown a flagrant disregard for the foreseeable consequences of populating the real world with virtual Pokemon without seeking the permission of property owners." 

    Jennifer Pafti of Pomerantz,  the law firm representing Marder, has been involved a few class action suits as of late, including one against Etsy and another against Fitbit, the makers of a digital fitness monitor. The game’s guidelines do caution people  "not trespass, or in any manner gain or attempt to gain access to any property or location where you do not have the right or permission to be," but ultimately the decision to heed this advice rests with the players.


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