thenoobyorker said: There’s nothing revolutionary about TED. It has simply become another networking tool, another pat in the back for liberal “communists” who believe they have solutions but don’t want to question/ shake existing power structures.
I believe I am kind of unofficially banned from TEDxAmsterdam. I wrote a series of scathing posts about them last year, plus I had a few email exchanges with some members of the organizing team a few months ago and let’s just say, my exchanges didn’t paint them under the most positive light. The exchanges ended up in such unfriendly terms that they offered me a position in the TEDxBaghdad organizing team. I wish I was kidding. I am still trying to figure out if it was a bad joke or wishful thinking as to what my destination should be.
The thing is, I earn a living (as meager as that might be sometimes) designing communication strategies for NGOs. When an organization as far reaching and powerful as TED demands that, in order to access the privilege of attendance, we have to “spread their brand”, I get pretty agitated. Besides, the local Dutch team is also part of the organization of some of the most expensive, inaccessible conferences that take place in The Netherlands (like the PICNIC event, which costs 1200 Euros to attend for a three day pass plus extras for attending the “networking dinners”). And in reality, it’s always the same people populating these events and, like you say, patting themselves in the back for how progressive they are and how they are bringing solutions to the country.
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