The Pokémon GO community at large is up in arms about the state of the game. Early concerns about the game experience, from server issues to mechanical oversight, were given a pass due to the game being new and in remarkably high demand. Now that a month has passed fans are beginning to lose their patience as developer Niantic continues its silence.
Players are handling the tense situation in a variety of ways. While many are venting their frustration en masse on places like the Pokémon GO sub-Reddit, other have used social media. In the case of one group, sharing an opinion with the world wasn't enough.
The group Our Mine has claimed responsibility for the hacking of Niantic CEO John Hanke's Twitter account. The Brazil-based hacker group has used the account, which has over 17,000 followers, to share Quora links. These links point toward discussion regarding the lack of communication from Niantic, as well as the recent delay of Pokémon GO's South American release.
The account has been in the control of Our Mine for more than 24 hours, although no new posts have been added since the original hacking.
Among the three tweets by Our Mine is one that shares that John Hanke's password was "nopass", which suggests why it didn't take long for the account to be compromised.
During this period of time Niantic has continued to be tight-lipped about Pokémon GO, its issues, and its future. Meanwhile, thousands of new complaints have been poured onto the internet regarding concerns over the removal of a feature that allowed players to track Pokémon.
Google Play has gone as far as to post an apology following the submission of thousands of help tickets for Pokémon GO. Interestingly enough, it has pointed users to Niantic for assistance even though the developer has provided woefully inadequate support since launch.
Pokémon GO's design is bold and has left a strong impression on the entertainment industry, but Niantic is losing its favorability with consumers, and fast. Hiring a skilled Community Manager and opening up a line of communication would be a huge step toward making players feel valued as well as potentially de-incentivizing future hacks.