NY Times

Not a Joke: State of New York Adds an Unusual Parole Requirement for Sex Offenders

Aug 22, 2016  •  Post A Comment

We’d be surprised if you’re able to guess the new requirement that has been added to the list of items that most sex offenders must agree to in order to be granted parole in New York state.

The New York Times reports that the list “includes many stipulations, all written in the first person. There are promises to register with local law enforcement, to complete therapy if it is required and to not pick up hitchhikers or visit schools or playgrounds.

“And at the end there is a new entry: no Pokemon Go.”

The paper notes that the requirement reads: “I understand that I shall not download, access, or otherwise engage in any internet-enabled gaming activities to include Pokemon Go.”

The Times adds: “The appearance of the popular smartphone game — in which players catch Pokemon, digital creatures with names such as Squirtle and Jigglypuff — on the gloomy bureaucratic document was not a joke or a prank. It was a serious policy enacted by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, a Democrat, this month to protect children who play games over the internet.”

Civil liberties advocates remain skeptical about the value of the new rule.

Parker Higgins, director of copyright activism for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a nonprofit focused on digital rights, is quoted in the report saying: “This reads like an office that is picking up on a trendy topic and issuing a policy decision for press, but without there being a lot of consideration of how it would be helpful and possibly harmful to real people out there.”

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