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Rihanna Said What We Were All Thinking This Weekend

Photo: IBL/REX/Shutterstock.
This past weekend, Rihanna echoed a sentiment that Alicia Keys, Adele, and The Lumineers have voiced before her: Put down your phone and enjoy the live show.

But she brought a particularly timely topic to the conversation with a mention of Pokémon Go. In a video posted to Twitter by Shady Music Facts, Rihanna tells concert goers, "I don't want to see you texting your boyfriends or your girlfriends. I don't want to see you catching Pokémons up in this bitch."

She's met with cheers from the crowd, but had she gone to the lengths that Alicia Keys and others have, it's unlikely she would have received that same joyful response. Keys recently adopted a no-cell-phone policy that requires guests to put their phones in a Yondr case that will remain locked for the duration of the show. The case, which features the tag line "be here now," can only be unlocked outside of the phone-free zone in a concert venue.

In this case, Rihanna sounds somewhat playful as she addresses the fad that has consumed much of the world for the past few weeks. But her message is an important one that should not be taken lightly.

People are already sick of the ignorance that Pokémon Go addicts have shown in public places. And anyone who has ever gone to a concert knows how annoying it can be to miss what's taking place onstage because your view is blocked by hundreds of phones in the air. Why bother spending hundreds of dollars to be there if you'll have to watch what's being recorded and snapchatted later on, just like everyone else at home?

Rihanna's mention of Pokémon Go is less about the actual game and more about an obsession with something onscreen that is so strong it has the power to detract people from living in the moment. Yondr is a step in the right direction, but it isn't the solution. That will have to come from the people who are buying the tickets and attending the show. Unfortunately, it will probably take more artists taking action before we begin to see a change in the social behaviour that has developed over the past couple of years.

But if there's anyone who can help make this "Work," it's Rihanna.