Russians used Pokémon Go to stir up racial tensions

One of the prizes

In one of the most absurd twists yet in the investigation into Russia-aligned election meddling, CNN reports that Kremlin-linked actors may have tried to use the hype around the augmented-reality app to inflame racial divisions.

According to CNN, the group's Tumblr page included a post showing a Pokémon named "Eric Garner", who died after being put in a chokehold by a officer of the New York Police Department.

Virtually everything the Don't Shoot Us social media accounts (which were active on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and elsewhere) published or shared was meant to stir up trouble or cause division by taking advantage of activists who had grievances with the justice system in the United States. Users were then supposed to email the organization proof of having done so for the chance to win Amazon gift cards.

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Each person is allowed to enter three photos into the Pokémon GO AR Photo Contest.

The CNN report says it's not clear what the campaign was trying to accomplish with the Pokemon Go contest, though it might have been to upset the people living near those places and remind them of the police brutality issues. "This "contest" required people to take screen shots from their phone and share over other social networks, not within our game". But one surprise tool was Pokemon Go. You never know, you can end up being that lucky victor.

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