From military zones in Indonesia to the home of an ex-lover, the news is awash with many such stories. One such case is a famous Russian YouTube star who was earlier detained this month for playing the game in the Church of All Saints in Moscow City. Under Article 282 of the Russian Federation Criminal Code, a person can be arrested for the ‘incitement of hatred or enmity, as well as abasement of human dignity’. Under the perceived violation of this law, the Sokolovsky was arrested following a video he made of this incident and may face up to 5 years in jail.
Two members of the notorious Russian band Pussy Riot were arrested and charged with violating this same law.
In the video, which has since generated over a million views, the young man can be seen questioning as to who would get offended if someone walked around holding a smartphone in a church.
Though some, such as the head of religious affairs Jaroslav Nov, have expressed wonder as to how using a phone in church constitutes as an offence.
Others such as the spokesperson for the Russian Orthodox Church Vladimir Legoyda pointed out that it was not the game being played that was at issue, but the nature of the video that was mocking, even comparing it to the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. Indeed, the video may have been intentional, to ‘test’ the waters as earlier this summer the Russian TV network Russia 24 has given warning to players that playing Pokémon Go in one of the churches might lead to jail time.