Judge rules against Milwaukee County in Pokemon Go ordinance

Candy Lab Inc., the company behind augmented reality games similar to Pokemon Go sued Milwaukee County for creating ordinances that made them apply for permits, secure garbage collection, security and medical services as well as insurance. The County said players trashed parks, stayed after park hours, caused significant traffic congestion and made excessive noise.

Candy Lab has a new game called Texas Rope 'Em which uses a similar technology to Pokemon Go where users go to certain locations to collect cards.

A United States District Court judge in Wisconsin found in favor of Candy Lab.

The ruling issued by the judge directly mentions Milwaukee's Lake Park where members of the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors said they had to spend tens of thousands of dollars on additional law enforcement and park maintenance services.

In February, 2017 the Board adopted an ordinance against the makers of augmented reality games by a vote of 13-4. The ordinance went into effect February 20.

The maker of Texas Rope 'Em confirmed with the County that it needed to secure a Special Event permit before releasing the game in Milwaukee and the County told him yes. Candy Lab never applied for a permit. 

In the ruling, the judge stated that the Supreme Court has instructed that video games are entitled to First Amendment protection. In its argument, the county said that augmented reality games are not covered under the same ruling. The judge ruled that augmented reality games are covered under First Amendment protection.

Click here to read the full ruling.

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