Protestors in Hong Kong have had to resort to more inventive ways of getting their message out there, and have been doing so by using Pokémon GO.
During the summer of 2016, Pokémon GO brought the world together like no game has ever done before it. Honestly, we think it might have been the closest we have ever come to world peace. As usual, everywhere we went, everyone was staring at their phones. However, that summer, we weren't doing it to avoid others, we were doing it because we were all playing Pokémon GO together.
The initial hype surrounding Pokémon GO might have died down, but it is still incredibly popular. Just last week, the app was downloaded for an incredible billionth time. Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, the game is being used for an unexpected type of good yet again. Protestors have been using the app, along with others, to organize protests.
Residents of Hong Kong, where there has recently been a significant amount of political unrest, have been protesting a controversial extradition bill. However, the country's officials have been making it difficult to organize protests via the usual means. That's why, as reported by the South China Morning Post, protestors have had to get more inventive. That's where Pokémon GO comes in.
Hong Kong police recently tried to deny protestors entry into a certain neighborhood on safety grounds. However, the "protestors" informed the police that they were simply there to catch Pokémon. That has warranted others to start using the idea, and some have even been advertising "protests" as Pokémon GO meet-ups, as you can see from the poster above. Protestors have also claimed they're meeting up to go sight-seeing.
Pokémon GO isn't the only app protestors have turned to in Hong Kong to incite change. Dating app Tinder has also become a popular platform for getting the message out. Plus, people have been using Apple's AirDrop to send out virtual fliers. A far less conspicuous way of doing so compared to handing out paper versions. That has also allowed them to get their message into mainland China, where the protests are largely being ignored by mainstream media.