TED Conversations

Asgar Fakhrudin

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What makes the TED talk click ? Original innovative ideas or that which titles the baser human instinct ?

I am asking myself, trying to understand and also seeking answer from the TED community as to what are the reasons behind the growing popularity of the Amanda Palmer Talk ( 1,124,100 hits since March 2013)) viz a viz Sugata Mitra Talk (534,434 hits since Feb 2013)

Is it on account of original idea shared or other factors.

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    Mar 11 2013: I think Amanda's from its title would appeal to people with a range of interests, while Mitra's is about the specific subject of online education. Both are very popular topics, of course.

    In terms of word-of-mouth, Amanda has a large personal following, including people who are active on social media and probably flag it to others on social media to watch.

    Amanda recommends action anyone could act on immediately or consider for a philosophy of life. Mitra's isn't as universal in that sense.

    I could imagine those who recommend Amanda's to each other suggesting that someone listen to it right away, like viral hits on the internet. Those who recommend Mitra's would probably not say, "You've got to hear this!"
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    Mar 10 2013: Here are the most viewed TED talks:
    http://www.ted.com/talks?lang=en&event=&duration=&sort=mostviewed&tag=

    Out of these top 20 videos we find that there are 11 videos relating to self improvement of sorts (becoming successful, motivation, overcoming social limitations, technological improvements that we could utilize..)

    So I would assume that (statistically speaking) what makes for the most popular talk is one on how we can make lives better for ourselves primarily and other people secondarily.
    *shrugs shoulders*
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    Gail . 50+

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    Mar 10 2013: I think that Amanda speaks to the dream that still lives within us all; the dream that is terrified into submission; the dream that longs for release from the prison of fear - the dream of authenticity and something far more than mere hope in a very dark world. She speaks to the best in us - as individuals and as communities in a time when individualsm is culturally unacceptable and communities are gone. She reminds us that we are OK.

    Her story is poetic so it reaches a deeper level - a memory of sorts. I would not call it a baser, but then as I am American and your are Indian, our word meanings may not be shared.

    Mitra is really talking about enabling the same thing in an evolving culture. But he offers an intellectual argument and asks us to reason and follow the evidence through a logical process.

    The reason (in my opinion) that Mitra is less popular is because the satisfying intellectual reasoning that is required to gain the most from his talk has been indoctrinated (programmed/brainwashed) out of us through our participation in what our culture calls "education". Most people don't know "how" to use critical thinking.

    I didn't learn how to think again until I was in my 30s. I didn't understand the "hippie movement" (that had Amanda's dream) until that moment when my mind turned on again - but by then, it was too late. My reasoning ability had been turned off for so long (while I learned required lessons by rote and I learned HOW to turn off my mind when it wandered beyond the core curriculum), I had forgotten who and what I am (thus who and what you are).

    The two dreams are similar if not the same. But it takes different messengers to speak to different people. Utimately, IN OUR CULTURE, it takes the dream (Amanda) and the route to attainment of the dream (Sugata) to get there. We live in a culture where the people are the enemy. Ah, to live in a world where people are respected!

    She voices that respect very clearly. He does it indirectly.
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      Mar 11 2013: oops. Thanks for pointing out the typo. I have made the correction. Also thank you for sharing your views. It has been helpful in a way.
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    Mar 10 2013: Amanda is poetic in many ways and has a good combination of the rhetoric and logical speech. This works well for her as an artist. Two main points that I took from it.

    1. The ability to be a celebrity AND connect with your fans.
    -This seems to be the best of both worlds. Many celebs complain about their fans but the celeb still wants the spotlight on them. Amanda's approach allows her to be a celebrity in a more intimate and fulfilling manner.

    2. And for Tedlovers analytical and critical aspects..... I See a revolution in many industries and Amanda is showing how to do it in the music industry. 25,000 fans is nothing for a big record company. Bu,t in her hands directly, it garnered her band over $1,000,000. So imagine telling your child or friend, that wants to make a living as a singer........ "You can certainly do it. And with the internet , changing technologies and a changing cultural mindset, music sharing allows you to bypass talent scouts, hiring a manager and HOPING you are discovered. Now you can be about the music and as your fan base grows you can earn a direct income."

    That is Power in the hands of the artists. A lot of people seem to think that art and music has been too commercialized and end users being sued for downloading songs is getting out of hand. The tighter the current industry tightens its grip the faster the artists and fans will flee.

    Amanda's tactics represent one small aspect of a changing industry that give hope to many with artistic talents
  • Mar 10 2013: Well both are big numbers. I like some young men playing blue grass too.