Picture via Shutterstock

Picture via Shutterstock

This is why people from around the world laugh at Singapore and call us a nanny state. After years of being mollycoddled through a rigid education system with very restricted political and social space for the public to voice opinions, we get used to looking to the Singapore government to decide everything for us.

Including whether we should be allowed to play Pokémon Go. That is if a Singaporean woman, Estella Young, can have her way.

In a letter which Young wrote to the Straits Times (which seems to like to curate and publish this kind of troll-like letters lately), she emphatically list out reasons why “the Singapore authorities should think twice about allowing the game to be played here”.

“Pokemon Go should not be played at certain locations for reasons of public safety and human decency.

Schools, hospitals and public transport interchanges should be off limits due to the risk posed by uncontrolled surges of human traffic.

Nor does it befit the dignity of other locations, such as houses of religious worship and cemeteries, to be invaded by gamers blindly chalking up points.” Argued Young.

Fair enough, but I do think there is a fine line to be drawn between appealing to the public to exercise moral judgement ourselves versus outright regulation to stamp out undesirable behaviour, deemed by a few people in society.

While I respect Young’s right to express her opinion, I think other Singaporeans also deserve the rights to share their rebuttals.

My favourite line from Young is this: “In this age of lone-wolf terrorism, an extremist could easily buy a “Lure” to draw players into a low-security zone before launching a mass-casualty attack.”


The lady managed to link Pokemon Go to potential terrorist attacks.

Might as well we ban all motor vehicle in Singapore since terrorists in Nice had used a lorry to stage a terror attack in France recently.

Let’s not stop there. We should ban the Straits Times and all newspapers too. Why?

There’s more.

Here are some of the best online comments on Young’s well-received letter:

What do you think of the whole issue?

Should the Singapore government step in and regulate Pokemon Go when it becomes available here?

By the way, if you are traveling to Japan, Pokemon Go is finally available in the birthplace of Pokemon and Pikachu. Check out our list of ten real attractions in Japan which you should be going to catch ’em all!