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A Wisconsin ordinance decreeing that augmented reality developers must get special permits if their apps encourage play in county parks has been ruled unconstitutional by a district judge.

Chris Kerr, News Editor

July 21, 2017

1 Min Read

A Wisconsin ordinance decreeing that augmented reality developers must get special permits if their apps encourage play in county parks has been ruled unconstitutional by a district judge.

It's a notable decision that could affect how augmented reality game devs operate and design games in the long-term. 

As reported by Ars Technica, the law was challenged by mobile studio Candy Lab, creators of augmented reality poker game Texas Rope 'Em, on First Amendment grounds. 

The California-based studio claims the ruling places restraints on developer's freedom of speech, and subsequently sued Milwaukee Country after it implemented the ordinance in response to Pokemon Go's summer of madness

After hearing the argument, U.S. District Judge J.P. Stadtmueller issued a preliminary injunction blocking Milwaukee Country from imposing the law until after the outcome of a trial. 

The trial is expected to go ahead sometime in April -- although the date isn't set in stone yet -- and will ultimately determine whether AR developers and their games are protected by the First Amendment.

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About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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