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‘Pokemon GO’ Linked to Distracted Driving in Recent Study

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I’ve been reading numerous stories about driving while Pokemon GO-ing (Free) and the often-unpleasant results of it. Now, we have more scientific evidence on the relation between Pokemon GO and distracted driving. A recent San Diego State University study looked at over 300 thousand Twitter posts over 10 days in July (July 10-19) and found that 18% of them were from people driving at the time they tweeted. The researchers looked for tweets that combined the word “Pokemon" and “driving," “drive," “car," and so on. According to the analysis of those tweets, 18% came from people driving while playing, 11% talked about someone who was driving while playing, and 4% mentioned a pedestrian playing near traffic.

The researchers also analyzed Google News articles from the same period and found that 14 car crashes were attributed to Pokemon GO. The researchers pointed out that since they only used Twitter as a way to measure distracted driving, it’s very possible they are underestimating the distractions linked to the game. This study raises some interesting concerns on future AR games; I wonder if in a few years time, instead of don’t text and drive ads we’ll be getting don’t play and drive.

[via Fox 5 San Diego]

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