Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Pokémon Go brings people to libraries

‘Welcome to the library.’ Cartoon image created with Bitstrips
In the new Pokémon Go, libraries have been given a “huge gift of outreach,” according to “Teen Librarian, Huge Nerd.”

Briefly, Pokémon Go is a brand-new mobile game that’s getting people out and exercising. As a player (“trainer”) moves about, his or her location is reproduced within the app and the player tries to locate and capture cartoon characters.

A young man in the bus seat in front of us last Saturday was scouting the shifting landscape through his device, looking for Pokémon to capture.

Real-life landmarks are incorporated into this “augmented-reality” game. Players do not have to go inside these locations, but have to be in physical proximity.

“PokéStops” are places where players can “grab” items, and “Gyms” are places where players can go so their Pokémon can battle other trainers’ Pokémon.

Libraries’ designation as “Gyms” or “PokéStops” has resulted in increased foot traffic. “Teen Librarian, Huge Nerd” offers recommendations for outreach.

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