'Love Actually' director uses Pokémon Go to put focus on global poverty

'Love Actually' director uses Pokémon Go to put focus on global poverty
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Screenwriter Richard Curtis is trying to direct world leader’s attention to global poverty by creating Pokéstops in Davos on the popular Pokémon Go mobile app. 

The writer of movies such as “Love Actually” is creating 17 Pokéstops — virtual stops that users can physically go to and interact with in the game — that correspond with United Nations-backed Project Everyone’s “Global Goals,” reports Business Insider. Curtis helped found Project Everyone.

The stops, which are accessible in Davos, Switzerland, where the World Economic Forum is being held, share titles with the goals, like “Zero Hunger” and “Good Health.”

The World Economic Forum hosts annually the world’s most prominent leaders and thinkers, who convene in Davos to address issues plaguing the global community.

In their goals, Project Everyone aims to create a “fairer world by 2030, where extreme poverty has been eradicated, climate change is properly addressed and injustice and inequality are unacceptable,” according to Project Everyone’s website.

Pokémon Go briefly became a cultural phenomenon when it was released last summer. Since then it has been downloaded over 500 million times.

Niantic Labs, the game development company that created Pokémon Go for Nintendo, told Business Insider that the game had been optimized to be played at the forum in Davos. 

“Whether they go to the Davos Congress, which has been turned into a 'Pokémon Gym,' or whether they go to the train station, each of these big locations and social gatherings corresponds to one of the stops," said Matthieu de Fayet, the vice president of Niantic.

Niantic plans to roll out the “Global Goals” later in the year to all Pokémon Go users. 

"The sustainable development goals are something that the next generation will fight for, and something we're trying to make as popular as we can with young people — as well as making them important and meaningful to business and politicians," Curtis said.

"Based on the number of Pokémon Go downloads, 10% of the planet are familiar with the game, and will be engaged around not only the game but also with these important goals," De Fayet added.