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News Release
July 21, 2003
CONTACT: David Fish
(202) 289-8928

A Conversation With Viacom's Mel Karmazin
President & COO to Engage Aspen Summit Participants Aug. 19

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Mel Karmazin, president and chief operating officer of Viacom, will share his views on the future of digital entertainment at The Progress & Freedom Foundation’s upcoming Aspen Summit. An annual gathering in Aspen, Colorado, of some of the most prominent business leaders, influential policymakers and probing thinkers in the communications and technology sectors, the Summit takes place August 17-19 at the St. Regis Aspen. Karmazin will engage attendees in an extended dialogue on Tuesday, August 19, at 7:00 p.m. (Mountain), as the Chairman’s Dinner speaker.

Karmazin, who serves on the Viacom board, is responsible for overseeing all company operations. Viacom is one of the world’s largest entertainment and media companies, and a leader in the production, promotion and distribution of entertainment, news, sports and music. Its properties include CBS, MTV, Nickelodeon, VH1, BET, Paramount Pictures, Viacom Outdoor, Infinity Broadcasting, UPN, TNN, TV Land, CMT, Comedy Central, Showtime, Blockbuster and Simon & Schuster.

Other confirmed participants in the three-day Aspen Summit include FCC Chairman Michael Powell and FTC Chairman Timothy Muris, as well as senior executives from such companies as AOL Time Warner, Allegiance Telecom, Autodesk, BellSouth, Comcast, Covad, EMI Group, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, Movielink, Qwest, Red Hat,, SBC, Sybase, Universal Pictures, Verizon and Verizon Wireless. Other high-level participants include FCC Commissioners Kathleen Abernathy and Kevin Martin, FTC Commissioner Orson Swindle, Assistant Secretary of Commerce Bruce Mehlman and Register of Copyrights Marybeth Peters. Registration information:

Following its 1995 debut, the Aspen Summit earned a reputation as one of the most interesting events of its kind. (Wired compared it to the Davos summit in Switzerland and the famed Renaissance Weekend.) Recent speakers have included Jeff Bezos, Carly Fiorina, Peter Chernin, Ivan Seidenberg and Les Vadasz. Senior policymakers and noted academics have also taken part. Members of the audience – who often include the likes of Michael Eisner and John Doerr – also contribute mightily to the annual discussions.

The Progress & Freedom Foundation is a market-oriented think tank that studies the impact of the digital revolution and its implications for public policy. It is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded in 1993.



The Progress & Freedom Foundation