Stop Trying to Catch Pokémon While Visiting Auschwitz
The Holocaust memorial site went ahead and added its name to the already long list of places where you should absolutely not play 'Pokémon Go.'
Photo via Flickr user Kevin Wallis
It should go without saying that Auschwitz—the former Nazi concentration camp where around 1.1 million Jews, Poles, and POWs died—is not a place to stand around and catch stupid virtual goblins on your iPhone. Unfortunately, the fact that the memorial is an important and sacred space hasn't stopped visitors from busting out Pokémon Go to lob pokeballs at Pidgeys, so the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum decided to take matters into its own hands.
On Wednesday, the Daily Beast reports that the museum reached out to the game's producers, kindly asking them to remove Auschwitz from the GPS map.
"We think that allowing such games to be active on the site of Auschwitz Memorial is disrespectful to the memory of the victims of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp on many levels and is absolutely inappropriate," memorial spokesperson Pawel Sawicki told the Daily Beast. "It should not be active at our memorial but also at other memorials and Holocaust museums."
The new mobile game has gotten so popular over the past week that it's caused hordes of obsessive players to completely disregard taste and good sense and whip out their phones to catch another 500 Duduos and Zubats at some less-than-ideal spots, like the Holocaust Museum, Arlington National Cemetery in DC, and the 9/11 Memorial. South Koreans are even flocking to a remote village right on the North Korean border to play the game—despite that ongoing war between the two countries.
The game launched officially in Germany on Wednesday, and is expected to rollout in the rest of Europe later this week, so things will probably get worse before they get better.