Oscar-winning film director Oliver Stone has branded Pokémon Go “a new level of invasion” and suggested it is part of a tech trend that could lead to “totalitarianism”.
While promoting his new movie about infamous US whistleblower Edward Snowden at Comic Con yesterday (July 21), Ars Technica reports, Stone was asked about the enormously popular app.
“I’m hearing about it too, it’s a new level of invasion,” he told the panel audience. “Once the government had been hounded by Snowden, of course the corporations went into encryption, because they had to for survival, right? But the search for profits is enormous here. Nobody has ever seen, in the history of the world, something like Google, ever.
It’s the biggest, new fastest-growing business ever, and they have invested huge amounts of money into what surveillance is, which is data-mining.”
“They’re data-mining every person in this room for information as to what you’re buying, what you like, and above all, your behaviour. Pokémon Go kicks into that,” Stone continued. “But this is everywhere. It’s what some people call surveillance capitalism. It’s the newest stage. It’s not for profit in the beginning, but it becomes for profit in the end.”
Stone, known for directing films including Platoon and Wall Street, then added: “It manipulates your behaviour. It has happened already quite a bit on the Internet, but you’ll see it everywhere – you’ll see a new form of, frankly, a robot society, where they will know how you want to behave and they will make the mockup that matches how you behave and feed you. It’s what they call totalitarianism.”
Meanwhile, Pokémon Go’s astonishing success has been highlighted after it recently became the most successful mobile game in US history.
The success of the app is so widespread that a Pokémon Go dating app has now been launched. Entitled PokéDates, the venture is an offshoot of existing dating service Project Fixup, and aims to set up prospective partners by sending them on Pokémon hunting dates. The first ‘PokéDate’ is free but after that, you must refer friends or pay $20 (£15) for each additional date. Find out more info here.