Five things worth sharing from the last week or so, brought to you by a different member of the Browser Media team every Friday.
This week’s My Five is by Ali.
If you weren’t part of the original Pokémon phenomenon, it doesn’t appear to matter – everyone is talking about and using the new augmented reality game on their smartphone. The game uses a smartphone’s GPS location to track and capture Pokémon monsters. Useful loot (balls, snacks, medicine and eggs) are collected at Pokéstops – usually landmarks or buildings of significance in the area – and Pokémon fight it out at a Gym.
The craze is just taking off in the UK but in the US, some local businesses are benefiting from being Pokéstops – particularly restaurants where people on the Pokémon trail are stopping for refreshments. (See Matt’s post about how your business can benefit from Pokémon GO.)
Keen to be part of the Pokémon craze is McDonald’s who are apparently close to tying up a deal with the makers Niantic Inc – a spin-off of Google’s parent company Alphabet Inc.
There has also been much anecdotal reporting of an increase in bruises, grazes and sprains as people are heads down playing the game.
Its appeal to adults in their 20s and 30s who watched the television programme as a child is clear but the game appears to be crossing generations. Apparently it’s a hit with teens and as soon as the summer holidays start, school children will undoubtedly be hooked too. Nintendo, who part own The Pokémon Company with Niantic, have seen their share price jump by 70 per cent on the back of the game’s success and a New Zealander has even given up his job to become a full time Pokémon hunter.
It wasn’t just Gibraltarian football team, the Lincoln Imps, who were red this week – Sky Sports news were pretty shame faced when they fell for a spoof infographic from Twitter user @WeahsCousin, and used the material live on air.
The infographic claimed that the Lincoln Red Imps’ manager was chosen via a competition and that one of their strikers has done six years inside for class A drugs. The outrageous spoof also stated that they regularly play to a crowd of just 28 and that the pitch is used for metal detecting on a Tuesday. All hilarious stuff, which only makes it all the more embarrassing for Sky News when they used the information during a post-match analysis.
Google has yet again been accused of abusing its dominant position in the market on two fronts – firstly that it restricted internet shopping competition and stopped websites from showing adverts from the search engine’s competitors; and secondly that it placed onerous requests on firms using its Android operating system.
European competition commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, said:
“Google has come up with many innovative products that have made a difference to our lives. But that doesn’t give Google the right to deny other companies the chance to compete and innovate.” via euobserver.com
Google replied saying:
“We believe that our innovations and product improvements have increased choice for European consumers and promote competition. We’ll examine the commission’s renewed cases and provide a detailed response in the coming weeks.” via wsj.com
A new favourite site of mine is damnyouautocorrect.com. Does what is says on the tin really but hours of amusement to be had here. Warning: parental guidance may be needed.
As regular readers will know, we’re quite fond of a kitty in Browser Media’s My5, but usually they’re doing something crazy or cute to catch our attention. It’s therefore a very strange thing when this week’s cat is a sensible one. In fact, he was the most sensible part of the complete madness and mayhem (no pun intended) in British politics. If rumours are to be believed, the Camerons are more chocolate labrador people, but the outgoing PM did publish a photo of himself stroking Larry to dispel rumours that he wasn’t fond of his ‘chief mouser’.
Larry, we salute you for your dignity and composure outside No10 this week and hope you’re quite content with your new roomies.
He’s also got an unofficial Twitter account which is worth following for gems such as this:
Not sure who Theresa May thinks she is, but she’s walking around Number 10 like she owns the place. Oh.
— Larry the Cat (@Number10cat) July 13, 2016