back to article Judge uses 1st Amendment on Pokemon Go park ban. It's super effective!

Milwaukee County's rules to keep its parks from being overrun by augmented reality gamers have been suspended by a judge over concerns that they violate the First Amendment. US District Court Judge JP Stadtmueller on Thursday granted plaintiff Candy Labs' request for a preliminary injunction, preventing the rules from being …

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Alert

Using a public park for recreation...

shows you how crazy those kids are nowadays.

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Devil

Re: Using a public park for recreation...

beats staying home and vegging out all day in front of a TV screen

(and I just say, take your trash with you when you leave, k-thx - give a hoot, don't pollute, etc. and we'll all be fine)

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Phew, that means I can get on with my AR dogging app. To encourage people to go out into parks and the woodland obviously !!!!

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Holmes

Question: How are these different from a "flash mob? Personally, I can't see a difference at all, unless you call it on the cause for that occurance. So, what's the obligations of the participants of a flash mob?

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In general, a flash mob gathering also would be protected by the first amendment. Some, or even all, of the participants might act in ways that violate the law or local ordinances, but that is an entirely different matter. The mob gathering place might have an effect, too: those in a flash mob that collected in the middle of a busy street or highway might well be arrested, perhaps for jaywalking or blocking the flow of traffic. (A content-neutral prohibition of that probably would pass a reasonable first-amendment examination).

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@tom dial - The judge said the county needs to prosecute the actual perps not someone who 'organized' the 'event' - a rare bit of clarity and common sense.

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Consider a band that wants to hold a concert at that park. They would need a permit, which obligates them in certain ways to the city. Such permits are pretty universal and for good reasons.

But now, a company far away can easily appropriate that park for their own uses with no permit at all. The result might be a very large crowd (just like with the concert) making heavy use of the park, interfering with local's use of said park, and if something bad happens, no liability for the 'organizers.'

In an ideal world, Pokemon Go would not be a problem, nor would concerts. But that's not how it really is. Large crowds of like-minded people suddenly appearing at the local park are at the very least quite intimidating, and potentially scary too if that crowd's mood turns ugly for any reason. This is why some are viewing the phenomenon as a threat. At least with permits there is some oversight.

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"Large crowds of like-minded people suddenly appearing at the local park are at the very least quite intimidating"

Oh tell me about it, I hate it when people pikachu when I'm going about my business in the park.

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liablility

>>Large crowds of like-minded people suddenly appearing at the local park

>>are at the very least quite intimidating

No doubt. I'd blame warm sunny days.

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Devil

back in the 60's the Ventures used to sit out on a beach [one with somewhat limited access, but still publically accessible] and practice with acoustic instruments (including bongo drums). I was 5 or 6 years old at the time, and we'd sit somewhat nearby on the beach. Then one day they had an actual concert out there, but I expect the concert required a permit.

I doubt they had permits for practicing (with acoustic instruments) on the beach. So maybe the scale of the activity is what is in question. I suspect that random pokemon-go-ers aren't quite the same as a concert or a flash mob.

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Anonymous Coward

The walking dead

"Large crowds of brain-dead people suddenly appearing at the local park are at the very least quite intimidating"

How is this any different to the zombie apocalypse?

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Re: The walking dead

Zombies don't use phones.

At least, they didn't last time I checked...

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Re: The walking dead

I would think that the biggest difference is that zombies don't exist.

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"Prosecute the perps," as they could have done in the first place without enacting a probably unconstitutional ordinance.

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Re: The walking dead

"send more paramedics..."

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Anonymous Coward

Perhaps the State should create an AR package that earns the players points for going to Candy Crush (what a dumb arse name) office/bear pit or even better the self serving money grubbing lawyer's office and his residential area, on certain Saturdays and Sundays to ensure a good size flash mob.

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"...or even better the self serving money grubbing lawyer's office and his residential area, on certain Saturdays and Sundays..."

Precisely! What maxim number is it, that says "If it can be weaponized it will be."?

Clearly no state can tolerate private companies that are able to direct large masses of trampling zombies ..ahem.. people, towards that company's 'shiza-listers,' no? (that's the goverment's job!)

But gee.. will players let themselves be manipulated like a "zombie fleet," but in the flesh!?

Okay, that does sound pretty cool...

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Seriously people, use Subjects^WTitles. It helps with the lack of proper threading.

"But gee.. will players let themselves be manipulated like a "zombie fleet," but in the flesh!?"

Trump's in the Oval Office. Enough said?

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re: In an ideal world, Pokemon Go would not be a problem

I agree with big John;

Imagine that part of a park is rented for a private gathering such as a wedding...

Then someone in an AR game company plops down a 'Legendary Pokemon' with 'Perfect' fighting stats there...

Even if none of the Zmombies drop a single candywrapper while on their way to their goal, they'll most likely ruin someone's very expensive day.

Many places that are 'open to the public' can be rented for events. In fact, many of them need that extra income to pay for the upkeep. If events gets disturbed by AR gamers, it will 'get known' and less events will be held at those ventures.

There definitely needs to be permits.

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Coat

Re: The walking dead

I would think that the biggest difference is that zombies don't exist.

You've clearly never made the horrible mistake of reading youtube comments!

(many of 'em certainly got the "brain dead" down pat!")

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Ba(n)d analogy

Consider a band that wants to hold a concert at that park. They would need a permit

This is nothing like that. If a band want to hold a concert in the park and sell tickets then they want to be able to exclude people from an area of the park, it's obvious that you shouldn't be able to do that without a permit. Even if it's a free concert then you at least want to be able to exclude people from your stage. Also, you're going to be making a lot of noise which is going to affect everyone around you.

There's none of that with Pokemon Go or similar. The only effect you have is that a bunch of people go to the park but that's pretty much the point of public parks.

This looks to me like a case of "Go for the deep pockets". Some guy dropped some litter on your park. You could fine him for it but that requires some work. Maybe he was playing an AR game, or maybe he was using an exercise app which requires a bit of open space. Lets go for those companies because they are rich, even though they had absolutely nothing to do with the litter dropping.

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"But now, a company far away can easily appropriate that park for their own uses with no permit at all. The result might be a very large crowd (just like with the concert) making heavy use of the park, interfering with local's use of said park, and if something bad happens, no liability for the 'organizers.'"

That scenario has been around for decades - see the old 90s illegal raves in the UK. Laws were passed in the UK to address that, and I'd expect the USA to have similar laws already in place.

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Happy

Re: The walking dead

"Zombies don't use phones."

Hmm, judging by the way most people move up the street when they have a mobile phone in their hand, I'd say that's probably not entirely true!

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Oh wow! As a kid in the 1970s I grew up on a diet of Ventures and Shadows through my parents, they loved the Ventures. We used put on the Outer Limits album and watch our dog lose his marbles singing and howling along to it like a nutter! Ha ha!

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Devil

Re: The walking dead

Since the wide spread use of Facebook and texting on smartphones, I would not be sure about this anymore...

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Anonymous Coward

Amend this!

If the US is so great, why do their most powerful laws appear to be amendments?

1st amendment rights... 2nd amendment rights blah blah

You guys live by rule of changed things, then bang on about how said changed things can't be changed..

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Amend this!

And what's more, amendments can themselves be amended or even repealed. See the 18th amendment and prohibition.

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Re: Amend this!

The Constitution and its amendments were intended to define the limits of federal government action (and, with the fourteenth amendment, state and local government action as well). The SJWs who at present (since Citizens United) so hot to rewrite the first amendment need to be extremely careful that any reformulation does not come back to bite them.

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Re: Amend this!

Because a few states demanded the Bill of Rights (the first 10 amendments) to ratify the Constitution. The rest were added to clarify Presidential succession, extend and protect the right to vote, eliminate slavery and protect ex-slaves, and few important but more or less administrative issues (direct election of Senators and income tax).

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Re: Amend this!

Funny there's no such protection of freedom of expression when equally bogus "terrorist" charges are pressed. FISA let's these be quietly swept under the rug and nobody can say a word. Not even a canary.

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Re: Amend this!

It's an English idea. Blame William Penn. His Frame of Government for Pennsylvania incorporated a provision for his constitution to be amended as circumstances changed. It was just after the English Civil War and having a way to alter things without executing (e.g.) the king was pretty novel. The Founding Fathers, ~100 years later thought it was a neat idea. The rest is history.

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Boffin

Re: Amend this!

the story of the ammendments...

Back when the U.S. Constitution was created, Jefferson and a few others realized that it limited and defined the scope of government, but it didn't specify what rights the people had that couldn't someday be violated. So they used the 'ammendment' process that they just invented to craft the 'Bill of Rights' which the states then ratified. They knew that gummint would eventually find a way to curb people's basic rights (despite the new Constitution), and wanted to protect them. Otherwise you'd end up with a Vlad Putin type president, and a willing congress, who'd want to go back to 'the way things were' (USSR in his case), and legislate censorship, blanket "fishing expedition" search warrants, and things like that. Obviously they didn't want THAT to happen to the new nation, so ammendment #1 was about freedom of speech, press, and religion. And the 2nd was about self-defense and a citizen militia [seeing the possibility they might have to defend the rest of them at a citizen level]. And at least 2 others were about legal rights for the accused. And so on.

</history>

OK not 'scientific content' just educational

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Re: Amend this!

Notice how the right to speak freely (Amendment 1) was directly backed up by the right to bear arms (Amendment 2). I wonder if they thought those two were connected somehow?

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Re: Amend this!

They are not laws, they are changes to the constitution, and, being in effect, articles of the Constitution.

Read it here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitutional_amendment#United_States

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Boffin

Re: They are not laws

@Destroy All Monsters

They are not laws, they are changes to the constitution, and, being in effect, articles of the Constitution.

They are laws. From Article VI:

This Constitution, and the laws of the United States which shall be made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the United States, shall be the supreme law of the land; and the judges in every state shall be bound thereby, anything in the Constitution or laws of any State to the contrary notwithstanding.

So, yes, amendments are changes to the Constitution and become, effectively, articles of the Constitution. And, being articles of the Constitution, they are the supreme law of the land.

They are laws.

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Re: Amend this!

An amendment cannot be entirely repealed. There's no provision for that. Once it's on, it stays on. The 18th was not repealed - it is just countered by a later amendment, the 21st, which states that the 18th is repealed. The 18th is now a vestigial growth on the constitution - a no-longer-active bit of text, legally irrelevant, but stuck there as an eternal reminder that the US tried to ban alcohol and the attempt did not turn out very well.

It's worth noting that when the time came to ban all manner of other recreational drugs, there was no need for an amendment to the constitution, as by that time the supreme court had ruled that such affairs were within the jurisdiction of the federal government under the commerce clause - even if an individual trade was not inter-state, the economic ties of supply and demand mean that all commerce is inter-state commerce, even if indirectly.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Amend this!

... though on the recreartion drugs issue I think the key point in your explanation is that Federal government have jurisdiction over "commerce" with the result that I think the current situation is that states can pass laws to legalize their use but any purchases have, I think, to be done via cash only as banks (which have federal oversight) can't process payments. Hence, I remember a radio item on results of the legalization of marijuana in Colorado from a couple of years ago explained that one of the effects was the large number of armoured vans driving around to move all the cash that was being taken at shiops.

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Anonymous Coward

Here's an idea, rather than trying to make money out of it, speak to the developers and supply them maps of the park so people don't go trampling where they shouldn't, secondly employ rangers to monitor the park and fine people that drop trash in the park, thirdly get your schools to educate kids about why it's important to respect the environment. (albeit that's a bit difficult with Trumps position on climate change, I can't resist a good dig at the orange one.)

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Anonymous Coward

"Here's an idea, rather than trying to make money out of it, speak to the developers and supply them maps of the park so people don't go trampling where they shouldn't"

Then they'll just target those areas. They're based out of state. How are they going to get prosecuted?

"secondly employ rangers to monitor the park and fine people that drop trash in the park"

A second app probably alerts those nearby of "bears" approaching ("Ranger's Coming!"), allowing them to wait until he passes.

"thirdly get your schools to educate kids about why it's important to respect the environment."

Kids these days are DEFIANT of authority. School is just another authority, and the parents either aren't present to stymie it or, worse, egg them on because they're just as defiant.

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The tune is familiar, the lyrics are never-ending.

Every problem, indeed, can be solved with "Everything can magically work out with some more tax money" and "Everybody must support degenerate clones of Lysenko".

And if it somehow remains, this only means there's need for more other people's money and more cheerleading for quacks-of-the-season (or both at once: throwing more other people's money at quacks).

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Unhappy

"educate kids about why it's important to respect the environment. (albeit that's a bit difficult with Trumps position on climate change ...)"

You had me agreeing with you, up until the 'climate change' part.

WHAT! PART! OF! NOT! THROWING! TRASH! ON! THE! GROUND! IS! IN! ANY! WAY! RELATED! TO! "climate change"???

I prefer "responsible environmentalism". That means you keep your cars tuned up, don't waste water, sweep the gutters once in a while to keep the crap out of the storm drains, dispose of yard waste properly, pick up trash when you see it laying the ground (especially in front of your house), etc. and ESPECIALLY, dispose of your OWN trash in proper receptacles when you're at a public park [including the recycle one for recyclables, if there is one available]. And if some kid misses the trash can and runs off, go ahead and put it in for him if you're close by (or notify his parents).

And how about THIS little factoid: Go to *ANY* left-wing gathering or demonstration, and look at the level of public littering it generates. Then, go to a Tea Party or Trump rally, and see how much THAT generates by comparison. i think you will find that CONSERVATIVES are more likely to pick up their trash and properly dispose of it than your typical LEFT WING or "Environmentalist" type.

The reason is simple: lefties *FEEL* as if it's "someone else's job" to throw the damn trash away! Conservatives, on the other hand, see it as a PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY (something lefties have trouble with, apparently).

Evidence "all over the place". I've seen MANY comparison photo montages pointing this out. Rush's web site might be a good start. The leftovers from 'occupy wall street' and the 'pussy hat protest' and the 'million man march' are good examples of what it looks like from "the left".

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Anonymous Coward

It's called sarcasm.

You can import it but the tariffs are going to be huge because of the orange one.

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Anonymous Coward

There is lots of trash at Trump and Tea Party rallies.

It's just that when the rally is over they go back home.

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>Kids these days are DEFIANT of authority. School is just another authority, and the parents either aren't present to stymie it or, worse, egg them on because they're just as defiant.

"These days"?

Have you not paid attention in history class?

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"Then they'll just target those areas. They're based out of state. How are they going to get prosecuted?"

I wounder how you came to that conclusion. Oh and by the way they do exclude areas when asked.

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> "Oh and by the way they do exclude areas when asked."

Okay, say they do. What then happens when cities and even whole states start demanding Pokemon Go not use their areas of authority for these games? If that becomes the norm it will pretty much kill the game.

So their promise to exclude is predicated on the assumption that few will avail themselves of this option. Should too many do so (or should it appear likely to happen) then the new games companies will be forced to declare that such blanket exclusion requests will no longer be honoured.

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OK, I'll bite ...

"If that becomes the norm it will pretty much kill the game."

So the fuck what? Where is it written that my state/county/city exists to ensure that an out-of-state company can make a profit AT MY EXPENSE? Let 'em go under if they can't make a profit without including me as an asset ... especially without including me in the profit sharing!

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Re: OK, I'll bite ...

Jake, you seem to believe I'm pro-game here. Did I say that?

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Re: OK, I'll bite ...

Meta comment. Directed at the concept of the single sentence, not an indictment of any particular individual.

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What then happens when cities and even whole states start demanding Pokemon Go not use their areas of authority for these games?
Then their legislators will have to explain to their voters why they can't enjoy this amazing phenomenon they've been hearing about everywhere else.

I'm sure some cities will go that way. (After all, to this day the USA has counties that pretend prohibition was never repealed.) But not most.

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