Hal Halpin is an American computer game executive and entrepreneur. He is perhaps best known as the founder of the video game industry's retail trade association Interactive Entertainment Merchants Association (IEMA) that merged with Video Software Dealers Association (VSDA) to form Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA).
Halpin is currently the president of the Crest Group, a consulting company serving the video game industry. Crest Group is the association management company that previously managed IEMA and now manages the Entertainment Consumers Association (ECA).
Following the successful merger of IEMA and VSDA in July 2006, Halpin established ECA, a non-profit membership organization that represents video game consumers.
The association was launched in response to the need for consumer rights advocacy following a string of anti-games and anti-gamer legislation which would have criminalized the sale of certain video games if not for the efforts of trade groups in opposition. The industry itself was well represented by the International Game Developers Association (IGDA), the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), and the Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA), but those that purchase and play games went completely unrepresented until the launch of the ECA.
Halpin founded the IEMA in 1997, and its member companies, including Wal-Mart, Toys R Us, Circuit City, Target Corporation, and Blockbuster Entertainment, accounted for approximately 75% of the sector's business. He also managed and ran the Executive Summit, which was the game industry's senior-level event for the top 700 decision-makers in the business.