Niantic, You Don't Own Pokemon

Niantic, You Don't Own Pokemon

Neither do you, Nintendo.
Jessica
Jessica
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Niantic recently has been caught under fire for changing some specific aspects of Pokemon Go, like the tracking, and apparently you no longer receive XP when you have a good throw (I've heard this in passing). While I am not hugely involved in any community of Pokemon players, I just felt this was an extremely depressing development in the Pokemon Go saga. Niantic removed some pretty big aspects to Pokemon Go, and some users are even demanding refunds because of the lack of tracking. In addition, some people reported their accounts were reset back to level 1 and they couldn't fix it at all. This is why we can't have nice things, isn't it?

It feels as though the same thing my generation hates has now touched something many of us hold dear: nostalgia. I wrote an article about the addictive qualities of Pokemon Go, and many people (some politely, some not), also reminded me that Pokemon Go is nostalgic for them. This is also true and something I also completely forgot about. I still have my old Gameboy color, as well as all of my Pokemon cartridges that still work. I have a binder full of Pokemon cards, filled with Pokemon stickers all over the covers from my childhood. Nintendo has managed to permanently brand our brains with Pokemon nostalgia because of our childhoods. We are okay with that. My generation, the millennials, love nostalgia, it seems. Even on Facebook, I see a "You Know You're a 90s Kid When..." meme every other day, or I see a "90s Kid Starter Pack" meme - or just about any meme related to the 90s. We miss our childhood because we loved it. We miss being a little oblivious to the Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton fights that now so often grace our Facebook timelines.

Niantic removed PokeVision and the other trackers, in my opinion, for no other reason than the same thing that has been plaguing my generation from the start: greed.

The more you play, the more money they make. All the people who live in rural areas won't have a choice but to buy more Pokeballs and lures and incense, because there's virtually no Pokestops anywhere. The more you play, and the more you wander and go about your daily business, the more location data they can sell. You're going to a bike shop? You can probably expect someone will be sold that data and you'll see bike ads come up somewhere. It is a free app, after all, and they want to make money somehow.

But people don't dedicate hours and hours of time to playing a Pokemon game. It is how they make money, but we have to make money as well. We need to work, and do other things than play Pokemon. I like to play it, but there's quite literally days I do not even eat regularly. There's days I'm awake since 8 AM and go to bed at 1 AM. Our days are long, and the Pokemon we catch are a little bit of a bright spot in our day.

Niantic, you don't own Pokemon. We do. Even Nintendo doesn't own Pokemon. We own it with our love of it for other reasons than money. We love it for the feelings it stirs up, for the nostalgia we experience, and for our books and books of Pokemon cards. We own it for our stuffed Pikachus we had as kids, and our favorite Pokemon we used to catch on our Gameboys when we were ten. We own it for adopting your game, you made, and you're benefiting off of our nostalgia and our love for a series.

We don't need your game to love Pokemon. All we need is our stuffed Pikachus, our 90s trading cards, and our old gameboys. The same way we raised up your game, we can take it down.

Listen to your userbase. We appreciate Pokemon, not you. Our loyalty is to our nostalgia.

Not your greed.

Cover Image Credit: thetowne.net

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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Stop Texting And Start Making Memories With Your Partner

You'll blink and your time together will be over.

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Technology is taking over our lives in this day and age. People use their phones for every aspect of their lives and they rely on them way more than they should. People act as if their phones are their lifelines.

They set reminders, the play games, track their food and exercise. You name it, you can probably use your phone for it. They have absolutely taken over everything so it's no wonder why people can't seem to take time away from them.

I will be the first to admit that I have an addiction to my cell phone. It is the first thing I see when I wake up and the last thing I see before I go to sleep. My boyfriend has an addiction to his as well. It's a problem. In any moment of silence, we check our phones or answer texts.

We get so focused on our phones that we will go hours without speaking to each other or making any noise at all. With the already limited time we have to spend together, we really shouldn't be worried about Facebook videos and Snapchat updates.

I hadn't really noticed it was a problem until my boyfriend pointed out that we go days at a time without having a real conversation. I scrolled through our texts and realized he was right.

We had been missing out on weeks of making memories and planning dates because we were too busy being in a committed relationship with our phones instead of each other.

Relationships are about balance and about making an effort to spend time together and make memories. It is about learning about someone so you can fall for them a million times. You can't make memories like that from behind your phone screen.

What happens when your phone dies and you don't have your phone charger? I'll tell you. You're stuck in awkward silence waiting for your partner to get off of their phone.

Or you sit in silence with your partner not knowing what to say or do because you have been treating your phones like lovers instead of each other. That's just painful.

You can't fall in love with your phone and the way that it has grown and changed over the years. Your phone can't hold you when you are sad. It can't take care of you when you are sick. It can't hold your hand in the car or make you laugh. So why choose it to spend time with over your partner?

Do you really want to look back on your relationship years from now and wonder why you don't have any memories? Or wonder why you can't remember anything you've done together?

No. No one wants that. So turn off your phone, put it on silent, hide it away and spend time making memories with the person you love that will last far beyond your phone battery. Trust me, you won't regret it.

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