Need clarification about commercial locations

Jagged08Fel-PGOJagged08Fel-PGO Posts: 7 ✭✭
edited December 2020 in Criteria Clarifications

I nominated a local pharmacy that is providing a 24hrs service that is not part of a big chain. It was refused with the message "The real-world location of the nomination appears to represent a generic store or restaurant"

I know that big chains are not allowed. Does this mean that pharmacies are not allowed?

I don't know why Niantic doesn't create more clear instructions about the guidelines for commercial locations.

I mean

  • hospitals
  • Pharmacies
  • Doctor offices/ walk in clinics
  • Restaurants
  • Café
  • Universities, faculties within the university
  • Teaching centers (languages, computer, etc)

I feel that every reviewer is interpreting the instructions of Niantic in a different way.

Does the community of reviewers agree on the rules for such locations?

Post edited by NianticGiffard on


  • TheFarix-PGOTheFarix-PGO Posts: 4,036 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Just because it is a local business doesn't mean it is eligible. It must meet the following criteria:

    A favorite gathering place for friends or strangers alike, where you can share a drink or meal, be entertained, or watch public life happen. Or something that draws us together to share an experience in a locally and culturally relevant way.

    Honestly, that doesn't sound like a pharmacy would meet that critiera?

  • sogNinjaman-INGsogNinjaman-ING Posts: 3,311 ✭✭✭✭✭

    A Pharmacy?

    Does not meet eligibility criteria

    Does not seem to be a great place of exploration, place for exercise, or place to be social

  • Jagged08Fel-PGOJagged08Fel-PGO Posts: 7 ✭✭


    What about the rest of the list

    • hospitals
    • Doctor offices/ walk in clinics
    • Restaurants
    • Café
    • Universities, faculties within the university
    • Teaching centers (languages, computer, etc)

    For example, I understand that with the above definition, hospitals and doctor offices wouldn't qualify.

    On the other hand, having a Pokestop in a hospital will help the children pass time.

    Any advice?

  • TheFarix-PGOTheFarix-PGO Posts: 4,036 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Of the list, only restaurants, cafes, coffee shops, and bars have any chance of meeting criteria as great place to be social with others, and universities/colleges could meet great places for exploration. The rest, however, is unlikely to meet criteria.

  • Jagged08Fel-PGOJagged08Fel-PGO Posts: 7 ✭✭

    Thanks TheFarix-PGO

    I thought that bars are not allowed "Ineligible location: Location is an adult-oriented store or service, such as a liquor store"

  • Gendgi-PGOGendgi-PGO Posts: 3,249 Ambassador

    Previous criteria updates and AMAs have been explicit that bars & pubs may be accepted. Unfortunately with @NianticCasey-ING's proclamation that the new criteria "overrides any previous AMA response or clarification here in the forum" and that "new criteria should be considered the new source of truth," we have lost those previous clarifications to fall back on. We may now require months more of AMAs to potentially rebuild that knowledgebase that has been undone, since seemingly now the AMAs will be the only way to get criteria clarifications.

    For what it's worth, I believe the intent behind what you mention is specifically a location that is basically already ineligible as a generic business - typically a convenience store. A pub, brewery, or place where people may gather together should still be acceptable.

    I agree with @TheFarix-PGO but also add that it's situational and each nomination should be carefully reviewed. A hospital itself would generally not meet criteria but locations such as contemplation gardens or publicly accessible permanent art could be if it does not potentially obstruct emergency services.

  • gazzas89-INGgazzas89-ING Posts: 88 ✭✭✭

    1. No, not eligible at all, though some things inside could be, like a statue or something, its a questionable one what can be accepted inside

    2. No, again, not eligible at all

    3. Yes, if you can prove culturally significant or if it s local hotspor

    4. Yes, same as before

    5. Possibly, if its historical or has plaque or something like that

    6. Id probably say no to that

  • NianticEGNianticEG Posts: 247 mod
    edited November 2020

    Let me clarify this for you, @Jagged08Fel-PGO! A generic store could be eligible depending on few factors. Before nominating, just analyse whether it holds any cultural/unique significance? Or, is it a local hotspot where you can take your friends/visitors to spend some time/explore that place? If yes, then it's good to go! You may want to ensure to add detailed information on why you think this place is good to be a POI, so the reviewers can get better understanding and vote accordingly.

    Mostly Restaurants or Cafe would meet the criteria as it is a good place for gathering, but if you consider University or faculty place, it may not, at all times. Reason being, not all the Universities would be accessible by the public, so it wouldn't meet the criteria. I hope this helps!

    Post edited by NianticEG on
  • TheAuraStorm-INGTheAuraStorm-ING Posts: 83 ✭✭✭

    Regarding Universities, your response has created far more questions than it has solved. You’ve mentioned 24/7 access being a concern, yet there is not referenced in any other parts of the criteria. Many points of interest are not accessible at every hour of the day, for example:

    Those inside the grounds of Museums, Theme Parks and other “sites” that people would visit, as well things like shutter art that isn’t visible when the shutters are up, Cafés and restaurants themselves aren’t open 24/7 so I don’t see why this has even been mentioned.

    I see University’s buildings meeting criteria for their educational value, like public libraries, or if the building has architectural value / interest, that’s another valid aspect of the criteria.

    If someone from Niantic can clarify this, that would be great, thank you.

  • pokestophope-INGpokestophope-ING Posts: 72 ✭✭✭

    I see you have edited the time element.

    However you are currently still saying that nominations must have public access. Does this mean that we are no longer allowed to nominate POI that may be e.g. artwork within a business premises, accessible by hundreds of employees but not by the general public. Or is it specific to universities that there must be public access to the campus/building?

  • Ellejayess-PGOEllejayess-PGO Posts: 46 ✭✭✭


    I wouldn't interpret the modpost as overuling official criteria.

    He indicates (as we already knew) business are eligible, without concern about opening hours.

    The only part of a uni I wouldn't nominate would be areas I can't personally get into, like private on-campus residences. Maybe that's what he means by faculty.

    I don't know of any fully private unis since all take daily visitors afaik...

  • Hi folks! I'd like to appreciate all the Wayfinders in this discussion for engaging. Some good questions were raised and insightful inputs shared!

    Jumping right into the subject, I have 3 major points to add here, while staying with the conversation:

    1) Indoor nominations are eligible, so long as they are publicly accessible to some capacity (e.g. inside a library or business with limited hours of operation), and where small groups can congregate and play comfortably. Note that nominations on private residential property are ineligible.

    2) There is no single set of rules or person who can tell a community in black and white what places are important where others are not. That’s why there will always be some ‘grey area’ in our collective goal to map the most interesting local places. What really influences reviews is how content is presented to convince reviewers that a nomination supports Niantic’s mission and follows the rules around abuse, accuracy, and intent.

    3) Local businesses that are considered long-standing watering holes, favorite hyper-local hangouts, or even more regionally recognized as a cultural hotspot, fall under the eligibility criteria of Explore and can be submitted for consideration and review. For submitters, since this is a subjective judgement call the reviewers must make, do utilize the supporting text and images to strengthen your case. For reviewers, keep in mind that even a generic business in a small town can be an important part of the local community. For context, here's @NianticCasey-ING shedding light on a similar discussion.

    To help you submit and review the best possible content for a nomination, please follow the guidelines explained in our Wayspot Eligibility and How to Review Wayspots articles.


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