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Demonstrators protest gentrification outside Make It in Brooklyn pitch competition

And then venture capitalist Charlie O'Donnell invited them into the event. The event offered a telling glimpse at emerging tensions between activists and the Brooklyn startup community.

“Gentrification is not innovation!” protesters chanted Wednesday evening from the sidewalk outside the Make It in BK Pitch Contest.

About a dozen protesters in total held signs and banners reading “Displacement is not innovative,” “Whose city? Our city!” and a particularly clever reproduction of a Renaissance-era-looking oil painting depicting conquistadors in the New World whose flag had been photoshopped out for one with the Industry City logo.

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