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Family and friends beg games industry analyst Michael Pachter to 'find a real job'

“I was surprised when I discovered he was still doing this,” said a now-estranged friend, who hasn’t spoken to Pachter since 2007. When asked how Pachter got his start, the source explained, “It was just me and him and a few friends, nothing big. We’d talk about games, make little predictions... a bet here, a bet there, and occasionally he'd be right, or at least close.”

“But then someone quoted him on the internet. It was nice at first, it made him feel good, butwe couldn’t have known how it would spiral out of control. Now he’s arguing with bloggers on VH1,”continued the source, referring toa 2007 spat (opens in new tab)with blogger Harold Goldberg, who Pachter referred to as “Howard” in a failed attempt to create a humorous portmanteau of the writer’s name and the word “coward.”

“People even started taking investment advice from him, and eventually he thought it was his job. But we all know it just isn’t a job,” added the source. “We just want him to get help."

Indeed, a recent Harvard study placed ‘industry analyst’ near the top of its list of common fictitious jobs, just under ‘direct marketing entrepreneur’ and ‘artist.’

“I don’t think the public realizes how dangerous and common these delusions are,” said lead researcher Ronald Boulder in a recent interview.

“I see these people, and they tell me they’re going to go ‘work’ at a ‘think tank,’ and I just shake my head,” he added. “One of my subjects told me he’s a ‘social media trend analyst.’ What can I do? I say to them, ‘That’s not a job. It just isn’t,’ but they don’t hear me. It’s very sad.”

Above: An artist's rendition of how afflicted patients may view their 'jobs' at think tanks and investment firms

Most recently, the Wedbush Morgan Securities analystsuggested that (opens in new tab)a new version of the Wii would merely match the capabilities of the Xbox 360 and PS3, and thus not begin a ‘new generation’ of gaming consoles. Dozens of news outlets reported the un-revelatory observation, which a source inside Pachter’s family believes is part of the problem.

“It’s not just him, I mean, if these websites would just stop quoting everything he said, it might go away,” said the tearful source. But despite Pachter’s worsening condition, she remains optimistic.

“I saw him on the phone the other day, talking about Kinect early adopters, and for a moment, you know, I could sort of see in his eyes that he knew,” she added. “It’s almost the new year… a time for change. Maybe after the 3DS launches he’ll start to turn around. I just don’t know.”

Dec 14, 2010

P.S. This all totally happened.

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Associate Editor, Digital at PC Gamer