Hal Halpin Rumors Swirl Around Lowenstein Departure

Contrary to rumors, outgoing Entertainment Software Association (ESA) boss Doug Lowenstein won’t be heading to the newly-launched Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA).

Nor has ECA founder Hal Halpin been approached about replacing Lowenstein at the ESA, which represents video game publishers.

That’s the word from Halpin, who told GamePolitics last night that he has been contacted about such rumors by a number of reporters since the Lowenstein news broke last week. Of the ESA vacancy, Halpin said:

My preference would be to have a real heavy hitter in the job – someone with a legal background, who knows their way around D.C. but isn’t necessarily a part of it. The federal-level legislation is significantly less threatening to the category than is state-level action, so being engrained in the politics on The Hill need not be a priority. Having the coalition partners (EMA, IGDA, ECA) involved in the search, too, would be prudent.

Of the other groups mentioned by Halpin, the Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA) represents video game retailers, while the International Game Developers Association (IGDA) represents those who create the games.

While Halpin has the right pedigree for the ESA’s top job, he’s wrapped up in the ECA startup at the moment. The new organization for game consumers will officially begin operations sometime next month.

Meanwhile, GameSpot has reported that Lowenstein will assume a job similar to the one he is leaving with a Washington, D.C. trade organization representing investment firms.

By the way, don’t forget to vote in GP’s who will replace Doug Lowenstein? poll.

Full Disclosure Dept: We should point out that GamePolitics is an ECA partner.

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