A group founded by several major media and technology companies plans to promote the web as a place for consumers to get songs, television shows, and movies without resorting to piracy, Reuters reports. Organizers of the group, which is called Arts+Labs, are touting it as the first time technology companies and content creators have met in a room–instead of fighting in court. In recent years, the two sides and consumer advocates have waged numerous legal battles dealing with the rights of artists, distributors, and users on the web. "I just like this approach a whole lot better," said Rick Carnes, president of the Songwriters Guild of America and an advisory board member, told a news conference on Sept. 29 in Beverly Hills. Arts+Labs is co-chaired by Mike McCurry, who was a press secretary for former President Bill Clinton. The group’s other co-chair is Mark McKinnon, who has served as media advisor to the presidential campaign of Sen. John McCain. The global music industry loses $12.5 billion a year to piracy, according to industry statistics. Illegally downloaded songs outnumber legally downloaded ones, 20-to-1, Carnes said. "For songwriters, it’s a recipe for extinction," he said…

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