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About Rainier

PC gamer, WorthPlaying EIC, globe-trotting couch potato, patriot, '80s headbanger, movie watcher, music lover, foodie and man in black -- squirrel!

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Entertainment Consumers Association Formed

by Rainier on Oct. 12, 2006 @ 11:47 a.m. PDT

The Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA) is a newly formed web-based consumer organization primed to serve the evolving needs of individuals who play computer and video games, focusing its advocacy efforts on consumer rights, anti-games legislation, and a host of other public policy concerns.

Founded by industry veteran and advocate Hal Halpin, the ECA is a 501(c)(4) non-profit membership organization established to give gamers the resource to stand up for their gaming rights while taking advantage of exclusive membership and affinity benefits.

The mission of the ECA is to give gaming consumers a voice and ensure that state and local politicians hear their concerns and appreciate their demographic power. The organization is designed to be an advocate for the interactive entertainment consumers who represent nearly fifty percent of the population, whose average age is 33, and spends $10 billion annually on gaming, yet are continually overlooked by politicians and the mainstream press. Gaming fans must make themselves heard, and the ECA gives them a vehicle to do so.

“The ECA was created to fill a void that needed to be paid attention to… arguably the most important group within the interactive entertainment industry, the consumers,” said ECA founder Hal Halpin. “These individuals are the life-blood to this multibillion dollar industry yet they have been unrepresented, until now, which is exciting for myself and the rest of the ECA team as we are the organization that now allows their voices to be heard.”

The ECA is also dedicated to providing substantial community and affinity benefits to its members. With membership, entertainment consumers can connect with like-minded gaming fans, stay on top of industry issues and events, explore career and educational opportunities in gaming, and voice their feedback on issues and products. As part of its member services, the ECA offers access to a number of key gaming resources through unique and exclusive partnerships and services including subscription discounts, savings on game purchases and rentals, access to industry events, and more. Future potential offerings include research, a variety of education and information-related assets, career assistance and guidance, scholarships and financial aid, low-rate affinity credit cards, and even low-cost comprehensive individual health and life insurance for members. An annual membership cost will be $19.99.

Prior to forming the ECA, Mr. Halpin founded the industry’s retail trade association, Interactive Entertainment Merchants Association (IEMA), which served the $10 billion video and computer game business and merged with the Video Software Dealers Association (VSDA) to form the Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA) in 2006. Mr. Halpin has been a force in the interactive entertainment industry for fifteen years as an executive and entrepreneur. The founder of numerous influential publications and organizations, he is often called upon to represent the interactive entertainment industry as an ambassador at large.

For more information, or to sign up for ECA membership, please visit www.theeca.com.

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