IIDA NY and Be Original Americas Raise Awareness about Counterfeiting in the Design Industry

The New York Chapter of IIDA (International Interior Design Association) has joined Be Original Americas, a nonprofit organization committed to promoting the value of genuine design and eliminating counterfeit practices in the design industry. As the first chapter of the IIDA to participate in this initiative, IIDA NY joins the ranks of brands, such as Herman Miller and Bernhardt Design, as well as a host of media partners, including Interior Design, Metropolis and Dwell, that are working together to protect designers’ original work and support the future of the industry.

The mission of Be Original Americas is to initiate discussion about the importance and value of preserving original design and to raise awareness in the A+D community about the damages that counterfeiting has on the industry. According to a 2012 study conducted by the International Chamber of Commerce, 2.5 million jobs have been lost because of copied and counterfeit products. Be Original Americas believes that, in addition to many artists and companies losing work and revenue, the practice of producing knockoffs also stifles innovation and the drive to create original work. The organization and its partners seek to cultivate an economic and moral standard across the industry, rooted in the belief that investing in legitimate design is not just good business, but also a necessary step to ensure future innovation.

Be Original Americas has found a like-minded Member in IIDA NY, whose mission is to elevate quality of life through interior design excellence, and to enhance the profession through education and open dialogue across different market sectors. “As professionals of the interior design industry, we support and strive for authenticity in our own work and believe that it makes a difference in the way people work and live,” says Rebecca Dorris Steiger, chapter president of IIDA NY.

As a new member, IIDA NY is collaborating with Be Original Americas to create a program for the New York A+D community to educate and inform professionals on the moral, environmental and economic value of genuine design. “With over 40 events each year, IIDA NY is uniquely positioned to reach members across all market sectors and communicate the value of authenticity to their colleagues and clients,” Steiger adds. IIDA NY and Be Original Americas are in the process of planning events for 2015.

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