Why do you engage in TED Conversations and how do you navigate through these large-scale conversations?
Recently, I read an article by Warren Sack titled "What Does a Very Large-Scale Conversation Look Like?" Here he explores new electronic spaces that have large, public, network-based, text-based interchanges ("very large scale conversations"). He points out that at no other point in history have we had a medium (in this case, TED conversations vis-a-vis the Internet) that supports large scale conversations between hundreds or thousands of people that transcend international borders often on a daily or hourly basis. Additionally, watching Clay Shirky's TED Talk about how social media continue to transform not only what we do, but who we are made me think more critically about the functionality and possibilities of group conversations on the Internet. Now, he too claims that we live in a time where the rising usefulness of social networking has the largest increased expressive capability in history. Combined, both Shirky and Sack point to the significant effects technology has on our society.
So the challenge the becomes: how can a participant of these large scale conversations listen to thousands of others; and how can the participant's words be heard by thousands of others participants in the same conversation?
Now, I'm new to TED Conversations, so I'm not as familiar with how the community works. However, for those who have long participated in these conversations: how would you define your interactive experience with other users on TED Conversations? As a user, how do you listen to large-scale conversations? Significantly, are you being heard by others?
As a TEDizen, how do you navigate through the TED Community?