Arts+Labs Hosts: CREATE Protecting Creativity from the Ground Up

– Platinum Selling Singer and Songwriter Suzanne Vega to Keynote--

--Members of Congress, Policy Experts and Creators Come Together to Combat Online Piracy

NEW YORK--()--Members of Congress, film directors, authors, musicians, visual artists, technology policy experts and other influentials will gather together for the first time on June 15 to discuss and debate how to crack down on online piracy and monetize content as rogue websites play a major part in the 2.5 million jobs lost annually in America1 as a result of trademark counterfeiting. Sponsored by Arts+Labs, CREATE – Protecting Creativity from the Ground Up will take place today at 9:00 am at Washington D.C.’s Newseum and engage a cross-section of industry professionals who will share their thought leadership and solutions on the subjects of creativity, commerce, copyright, counterfeiting and policy.

“America’s most important contribution to the global economy at this moment is the Internet. It embodies things that will keep America great well into the future: the free transfer of ideas and discourse across national boundaries, the fluid movement of capital for innovation and research, the direct connection of people from different walks of life with one another,” said Mike McCurry, Arts+Labs co-chair. “As Washington begins to craft solutions through legislation like the Protect IP Act, now is the time for a dialogue on how to foster even more innovation so that the digital economy can continue to thrive.”

Featuring a keynote by Platinum-selling singer and songwriter Suzanne Vega, CREATE is comprised of three panel discussions on:

  • The Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act or PROTECT IP Act (10:00 am – 10:45 am), featuring:
    • Marsha Blackburn, US Congressman (R-TN)
    • Jared Polis, US Congressman (D-CO)
    • Steve Tepp, Senior Director, Internet Piracy and Counterfeiting, US Chamber of Commerce
    • Larry Downes, Author, The Laws of Disruption: Harnessing the New Forces that Govern Business and Life in the Digital Age
    • Chris Castle, Copyright Attorney
    • Rick Carnes, President, The Songwriters Guild of America
  • The Future of the Digital Economy (11:00 am – 11:45 am), featuring:
    • Mike Fricklas, General Counsel, Viacom
    • Matt Serletic, CEO, Emblem Music Group
    • Tom Adams, CEO, Rosetta Stone
    • James Cavanaugh, President, American Society of Media Photographers
    • Kathy Wolfe, CEO, Wolfe Video
    • Osama Hussain, In-House Counsel, Bay TSP
  • A Conversation with the Creators (12:00 pm – 12:45 pm), featuring:\
    • Ellen Seidler, Film Director
    • Evan Lowenstein, Musician and CEO, StageIt
    • Marcus Johnson, Musician and Entrepreneur
    • John Harrington, Photographer
    • Colleen Doran, Illustrator
    • Brad Holland, Board Member, Illustrator’s Partnership of America

Co-chair Mark McKinnon emphasized the importance of intellectual property to America’s economy.

“America’s economy increasingly has a bedrock consisting of innovative, IP-intensive industries, ranging from entertainment and pharmaceuticals, to technology and its transmission, to luxury goods and software. These industries, and the 19 million people they employ2, are directly threatened by rogue sites that profit from pirated digital content and sales of counterfeit goods,” McKinnon stated. “We hope that CREATE can serve as a hub for creators, policy experts and businesspeople to come together and enact change on these important issues.”

For more information or to RSVP, please contact Emma Post at Sloane PR: or 212-446-1878. Interviews with Suzanne Vega and other panelists can be accommodated pending availability. The event will also be webcast at:

About Arts + Labs

Formed in 2008, Arts+Labs brings the creative community and technology companies together into one unique voice that seeks to educate and advocate for real business models and the common interest of consumers, creators, networks, and businesses to keep the Internet safe, reliable and open to innovation. Members include AT&T, Viacom, Microsoft, NBC Universal, Verizon, Songwriters Guild of America, Cisco, Broadcast Music, Inc. and the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers.


1Frontier Economics and Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy, Estimating the global economic and social impacts of counterfeiting and piracy, (February 2011).

2Fight Online Theft,


Sloane PR:
Emma Post, 212-446-1878


Sloane PR:
Emma Post, 212-446-1878