Culture

Norwegian lawmaker caught playing Pokemon Go in parliament

Technically Incorrect: Trine Skei Grande, leader of the liberal party, just can't get enough of monsters.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


She can do two things at once. Allegedly.

She can do two things at once. Allegedly.

Getty Images

I have visitors arriving from Norway next week and I'm worried that they're just going to ignore me.

They might be educated sorts, but I fear they could be in the grip of Pokemon Go, which seems to have infiltrated Norway's highest echelons.

As my evidence, might I present Trine Skei Grande?

No, she's not Ariana's mom. She is, however, the leader of the Norwegian Liberal Party and she's just been caught playing Pokemon Go during a parliamentary hearing on Wednesday.

As Norway's News In English reports, the hearing was discussing the future of Norway's defense industry. Meanwhile, Grande was on the attack, in search of monsters.

Some military bases in Norway may be shut down. Locals who depend on these bases wanted parliamentarians to listen to their concerns. Instead, Grande seems to have had her mind elsewhere.

She didn't immediately respond to a request for comment on her apparent Pokemon habit. She did, however, tell VG News, "Some of us have heads that listen better when we can do something brain dead on the side."

It's unlike a politician to claim superior powers of one kind or another. We're not used to politicians like that at all here in the US.

Some Norwegians, though, weren't entirely impressed. "It is pure and simple disrespectful to sit and play Pokemon during such a serious hearing," Halvar Rønneberg, the Progress Party's group leader in the Andøy area told state broadcaster NRK.

What's moving is that Grande made no attempt to hide what she was doing. She must have known that the hearing was being filmed, and the footage shows this wasn't some isolated Pokemon Go check-in. She played constantly as others spoke.

She is, of course, not the first parliamentarian caught enjoying digital entertainment during important proceedings. I will never forget the Indonesian antiporn crusader who was caught in parliament viewing porn.

Then there was the Italian lawmaker who took advantage of a parliamentary session to surf escort sites. Naturally, he blamed his iPad for leading him astray.

Grande's political party is Norway's oldest. It's more of a centrist party than what harsher minds might describe as liberal.

I need to find out whether my visitors are Liberal Party supporters. Did I mention they're staying for two weeks?