Pokemon Go Settlement Impact on OPR and POI

ElfFromSpaceElfFromSpace ✭✭✭
edited September 2019 in Wayfarer

News has just circulated about the results of a lawsuit and settlement. Included is the site and the posted results:

  • At least 95% of POI removal requests must be addressed within 15 days, and will be fulfilled if a POI is within 40 meters of a “single-family residential property.” The removal most occur within five business days of being acknowledged and agreed to.
  • Niantic must “maintain a database of complaints related to nuisance or trespass and requests to remove a POI, for a minimum of 1 (one) year from the date of the complaint.” Niantic must use this data in order to prevent putting new POIs on these properties.
  • A form must be put up on the Pokémon GO website for removals of POIs on single-family residential properties.
  • Raids will have a brief pop-up asking players to “be courteous to others and respectful of their real-world surroundings.”
  • “User reviewers” for potential POIs will direct users to use more scrutiny in making sure POI don’t end up on private property, including “neighborhood parks.”
  • Niantic itself must review a “statistically significant percentage of new POI submissions” to make sure this is enforced, though they can either use staff or a contractor.
  • Niantic must include an in-game mechanic for requesting and enforcing park hours.
  • In the rotating in-game warnings that appear when you load into the game, one will be included that reads: “Be courteous to members of real-world communities as you play Pokémon GO


The biggest thing I see here that draws attention is the line pertaining to "neighborhood parks" Previously we have been directed to approve portals that are basketball courts, playgrounds, etc within apartment complexes and small communities. Is this going to change? What about the portals already approved in these locations?



  • What impact is this going to have on OPR? When will there be Niantic reviews of portals, will this slow down or speed up OPR?

  • JosmanuJosmanu ✭✭✭
    edited September 2019

    I think this is all about residential areas and houseowners screaming about nuisance because people play in a park..., its very clear in the guidelins that you shouldnt accept or submit pois in residential areas, so that is covered

    parks are another story if the park close at 6pm then the portals should become not available for the players, from what i understand

    in the end OPR had no supervision at all in the past, these days and new ones to come they are kind of obligated to supervise the system or either stop giving random internet dudes the ability to put portals in their games and change the whole OPR process

    other than that, i dont see how this change OPR guidelines, but since niantic is terrible at communication i dont expect something to be announced regarding to this...at least for now

    honestly some stuff in my pov is just absurd how people get mad because they see people playing in the streets or parks, ofc thinking that they arent doing anything else other than just playing

  • In regards to parks, from what I understand from other reports I have read, they can still persist and be submitted, just that if the park has certain sunrise/sunset policies in place that these must be enforced in the app as well (basically making the portal/pokestop vanish or turn off after hours). Also, park owners and managers can request for portals/stops to be removed from their park(s) at anytime, as there are cases where parks are publicly accessible yet privately owned or managed.

  • Wait to see if guidance changes. Skip a review if you are currently unsure.

  • kholman1kholman1 ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 2019

    What is considered "Neighborhood parks" if it is community commons park land valid if someones private property of course it is invalid. They mean private residence not community commons in Multidwelling Units. Also park hours enforcement is up to the local jurisdiction to enforce via sending a report.

  • kholman1kholman1 ✭✭✭✭

    It is not changing they specifically mention single family private residences not multi-dwelling units. I hope people don't try and go yank these thinking they are invalid and misinterpret the rules.

  • kholman1kholman1 ✭✭✭✭

    What is really at risk of removal?:

    Legacy Private Residence Couch portals that were not caught

    Little Free Libraries that agents placed on private residence property

    Historic Houses

    Portals within 40m of private residence property if it is causing issues. So if you have exercise station portals withing 40m of a private residence in a park and it is fenced off it should not be an issue if the portal is next to the walking trail as an example of what still would be valid.

  • The verbiage in article is different from what I've seen prior. I agree that they haven't yet changed any guidance but skipping something is always an option if you have a question on it.

  • kholman1kholman1 ✭✭✭✭

    It even states clearly single-family properties not multi family dwelling units. So I am guessing Niantic is leaving it to property owners if they want MDU portals removed or not.

  • I realize the concern about removal. I have only seen systemic removal of fire stations due to safety concerns. I believe removal will follow this new settlement and at a minimum have to be reported.

  • I will continue to approve parks, basketball courts, playgrounds, and gathering places within 40 meters of private residentials unless there are no fenced boundaries separating the nominations from the houses, the nomination would encourage players to trespass and/or the nomination is within an incredibly close proximity to a residential property, or there isn't enough space for players to gather safely without bothering property owners. I've seen plenty of candidates that are within 40 meters but clearly have indications of boundaries of public vs private areas. I am in full support of respecting the privacy of residential properties but I won't detract from players' experiences, exercise, nor exploration where legitimate nominations pose no additional risks or concerns.

    To be clear, I will exercise additional scrutiny as required from OPR guidelines, I am simply stating that I am applying it both ways.

    From OPR Guidelines:

    Please be sure to closely review Candidates whose real-world location appears to be within 40 meters of private, single-family residential property, and Candidates whose real-world location appears to be in a neighborhood park. To be clear, Candidates should be rejected if their real-world location appears to be on private, single-family residential property or might encourage people to go onto private property (e.g., because the real-world location is at the end of a private driveway).

    The guidelines do not say that this scenario is an instant rejection. I think the example they provide here is a good one. I encounter the driveway scenario often. For example, LFL's. Even if that LFL is easily accessible from the sidewalk and is off the property owner's property (like on a patch of land on the other side of the sidewalk and away from their residence), if that nomination could block their driveway or is in a tight space, I'll reject it.

    FWIW, here is an example of a scenario where I would apply my logic mentioned above and accept a nomination within 40 meters of private residential property. Here is the lat and long: 46.890218, -114.118829. The nomination is along a known walking path, does not pose additional risks to property owners, and has plenty of space for players.

  • kholman1kholman1 ✭✭✭✭

    @Moonacy where did you grab that info?

  • MoonacyMoonacy ✭✭
    edited September 2019

    Are you referencing the bold section? That is found on the OPR Help page.

    Sorry, I'm not cool enough yet for links or mentions :). It won't let me post it.

  • Until we receive guidance from NIA I would not change reviewing practices. Currently we don’t have any way of measuring distances from homes. As far as having portals removed because if this, I’m only slightly worried. Here we had a museum request that everything be removed because of the behavior of Pokémon Go players. They have since learned their lesson and behave themselves and we have had no problems since. Over the last few months however, portals have been approved at that museum. What’s interesting is that they do not appear in Pokémon Go; only Ingress. So Niantic is capable of separating these things and it appears that that may be what happens instead of a blanket removal of portals. They may just have certain blocking programming that doesn’t allow things in that 40 meter distance to appear in Pokémon; or they may just wait for a complaint.

  • I believe they just post it on the "Help" on OPR cause its not even translated to my language yet. But it is on english on my OPR page.

  • edited September 2019

    They need to give OPR agents an abstain function (providing an explanation to avoid repeated abuse) rather than just skips. In some locations 5 skips isn't enough to avoid these types of portals.

    As for removals, I seriously hope they enforce better identification requirements than they do for removal requests now. Otherwise, I can see vectors for abuse by agents that want couch or difficult to access rural portals removed. I understand homeowners wanting to remove problematic POIs, but many not a problem now can 'become problems' when external agents get involved (local Ingress politics).

  • so is this world wide or just in the US?

  • GrogyanGrogyan ✭✭✭✭

    @NianticBrian @RedSoloCup would appreciate some sort of feedback regarding this topic, as it affects portals as well.

  • 'Neighborhood park' needs clarification.

    What exactly does that cover? Considering the nature of the settlement, it seems clear to me that portals such as apartment complex playgrounds and pools are now disallowed, but what about the small parks next to residential zones?

    In any case, this settlement is a **** knell for the games in rural areas. Considering how small towns are built, there are usually no areas that don't have private residential with 20 meters, let alone 40 meters...

  • edited September 2019

    The settlement is US-specific but it may end up being globally affected, depending on how Niantic handles it.

  • i believe stuff like portals in parks becoming unavailable after is closed is already live in places like japan

  • For what it’s worth, I’ve had 32 submissions come back in 2 days since this was announced. Some as old as 6 months and some as new as 3 weeks. It’s been insane.

  • Majority being denials?

  • grendelwulfgrendelwulf ✭✭✭✭✭

    This is easy: accept everything the same as you normally would. The onus is on the homeowner to report.

  • kholman1kholman1 ✭✭✭✭
    edited September 2019

    You clearly haven't read the whole report. It is only affecting "single family residences" does NOT include apartments. The 40m rule should only apply if it it impedes access to the homeowners property along with is it likely to promote trespassing and two existing portals will not be removed unless the homeowner complains and the onus is on the homeowner to take action if they feel like it is causing them grief no mater how serious the complaint actually is. The apartment pools was a NIAOPS personal opinion has absolutely no ties to the settlement.

  • kholman1kholman1 ✭✭✭✭

    @Mr0bvious Last week I had about 20 portals approved last week half were upgrades other half were just normal timed responses. Possibly you were one vote short in your cell and a passerby was the last vote needed on a consensus agreement to give a response.

  • AgentB0ssAgentB0ss ✭✭✭✭✭

    Just saw this, I believe that might also be related to my Charlotte Buddy finally hitting 12 this past week and knocking out 2500 reviews. So his additional reviews finally knocked you over the edge. Also we had another agent covering your area hit 12 about a month ago in Mooresville. We are finally beginning to ramp up our NC Review Crew!

    (This is Tanis5313 from Reddit, and he is BlameJamal on reddit)

  • Only relevant statement is "Niantic itself must review a statistically significant percentage of new POI submissions” This could potentially force Niantic to put heavier priority in reviewing submissions

  • Is there an additional source that gives better clarity on the neighborhood parks and 40M rules, or are you simply referring to reading the entire article that I posted?

    I actually like this part. It causes problems when people go into parks and cemeteries at night. If the portals in these places became inactive during the hours they are closed, that would help to prevent those parks and cemeteries from getting mad at pogo players. It would stop spoofers from nightcapping. If it applied to ingress, it would result in a whole extra meaning to a durable, so that might be a bad idea.

    Also I know some people who definitely overreact to players. There is a small park/greenspace a few blocks from my house, and the woman who lives across the street used to call the police every single time players raided there. The police showed up a couple of times and then stopped showing up. I assume they told the woman to stop wasting their time. Sometimes the players truly aren't at fault. LOL

    The settlement definitely does not ban any portals within 40m of a residence, but it allows any resident to ask them to be removed within 40m of their home. So rural pogo players will need to make SURE not to annoy, scare, and bother people with stops nearby!

    THIS! I have another issue, that I am trying to find more information on in a nearby state park! My aunt spoke to the director of a farm/living museum who asked for me to add more pokestops and gyms. But when I added one it went live in Ingress and not in Pokemon Go, and I have heard from another agent that there used to be a gym there that was removed. It seems likely that one of her workers, who is generally grumpy and complains about the visitors to the park, asked to have pokemon stops and gyms removed, but the actual director wants stops now. Is there currently a way to reverse removal of stops, and if not, one needs to be added. I can absolutely imagine some players I know reporting all of the portals within a half mile of my home as invalid from sheer spite.

  • kholman1kholman1 ✭✭✭✭

    @ElfFromSpace the help page clearly states single family private residences and this was added this week on the OPR website. It dos not say a word about multifamily unit housing. 🤷‍♂️ They aren't changing the rules on MDU housing.

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