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Playing Pokémon Go in Russian church saw streamer arrested

While Western Youtubers might be upset about copyright and the monetisation of the streaming site, things can be far worse in other parts of the world. A Russian Youtuber has been arrested and charged for recording himself playing Pokémon Go in church.

21 year old Ruslan Sokolovsky released a Youtube video back at the beginning of August, where he highlighted news reports released in the country that said playing Pokémon Go in church was illegal and that perpetrators could be prosecuted. He disbelieved such claims and asked how it could be illegal to take a smartphone into a church (as per the Guardian).

He then went on to film footage of himself catching a few pokémon in a local church. The video has proved popular, generating over a million views since it was released, but it’s also attracted the attention of the authorities. Sokolovsky has since been charged with inciting hatred and offending religious sensibilities.

He’s currently in prison and will remain there for at least two months. However depending on the outcome of the charges, he could be detained for as many as five years for the crime.

The band Pussy Riot, members of whom were also jailed under dubious charges and conditions several years before, voiced their support for the Youtuber, hoping to get a hashtag trending on Twitter to encourage his release.

Other anti-government protestors have latched on to this event and plan to use it to garner more attention for their causes, with calls for people to catch Pokémon in all sorts of places in order to defy the anti-play rule.

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KitGuru Says: While obviously Sokolovsky was trying to be provocative with his video, the idea that he should be given jail time for it is ridiculous. It really makes you feel lucky to live in a place where you can say that too, without fearing arrest yourself. 

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