game industry

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Back in high school and early college I stole a ton of video games.  And not the high tech way everyone steals video games, music and movies today – by sitting in the comfort of your home and just downloading them.  I walked into video game stores, shoved the games in my jacket (or, if the box was too big, opened the box and shoved the discs, manual and copy protection in my jacket) and walked out.  I did this with music, movies and books, too.  I shoplifted like crazy.  I stole maybe 20 books, 30 tapes and CDs and 40 games.  But worst of all, I managed to steal a giant hard drive (this was the late 80’s/early 90’s) add-on for my computer – took it off the wall, shoved it in my trench coat and walked right out with it. In all, I probably stole more than $2,000 worth of merchandise.  I definitely got eyed up by security once or twice and the one store I hit the most took all sorts of measures to stop me.  The last time I did it, I changed it up a little – I put the game disc inside my shirt, around my back tucked into my pants.  They stopped me on the way out and told me to open my jacket.  I did and spun around, but they could see nothing.  I acted indignant and left, but I was scared straight – I never did it again.  I think it helped that I was Asian and seemed relatively clean cut and well-dressed, and it was a mall in a fairly upscale area.  I don’t think people think of Asians as criminals, generally.  I didn’t think of myself as a criminal, while I was doing it.  But looking back, it was crazy.  Now I work in the video game industry, the very industry I was stealing from.  If I had been caught, my life would be completely different now.