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Pokémon GO Proves Congress Needs to Establish Augmented Reality Property Rights

Pokémon GO Proves Congress Needs to Establish Augmented Reality Property Rights

Rev. Christopher Benek is the associate pastor of Family Ministries and Mission at First Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, FL.


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"But what happens when AR developers cease to be polite? Remember AR can literally be superimposed over any present physical environment. So what happens when an Internet porn company decides to make public pornographic AR that resides on a church campus? What happens when a business's company headquarters is defaced by competitor advertisement? What happens when school bullies slander your child with AR graffiti on their locker at school? Or worse yet, what happens when citizen's homes begin to be targeted with racial, homophobic, or gender slurs? Without much imagination one can quickly see an infinite possibility of problematic situations that can arise in this new medium.

Of course some will say: "Well just don't use AR." But, in the near future, that simply won't be an option. AR will be as common as driving a car, using the Internet, or talking on a cell phone. People will want and even need to access AR to be able to function in their day-to-day life. And that is why it is essential that Congress establish AR property rights in our present reality now.

Of course, we need to understand that this is no small task. The United States Government will need to take the appropriate steps to prevent international AR cyber threats from occurring in the United States and its protected territories. And to do this an appropriate balance will need to be created between personal digital anonymity and public accountability. This will also likely mean that US politicians and diplomats will need to take an active role in encouraging ethical AR behavior globally which will require a tireless effort. But the alternative of ignoring these issues is potentially far more devastating to the future fabric of humanity.

This is precisely why Congress needs to get out in front of this issue now — because the various incidents that have ensued from catching a few imaginary creatures is going to soon be the least of our AR concerns. Without appropriate oversight, AR abuse is likely to be on humanity's horizon. And that could mean that the personal, religious and corporate freedoms that we presently experience could be significantly augmented to create a present reality that no one wants to experience."

He makes good points but I am not sure the right time for this is now.

Augmented reality is not that popular yet but we should still encourage ethical use of it.

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