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Ryan Niese

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Who really sees all of the brilliant ideas shared here?

When someone explains how a company can benefit from being sustainable (and by benefit I don't just mean tax reductions, I mean economically set apart from competitors) does anyone from current large companies actually see the explanation? When someone proposes a new way to go about our entire school systems do any policy makers actually see the proposal?
I understand that some of us may fall in the range of "just started own business" or "manager of a large firm" or "teacher/principal" but I'd ask is your large company worldwide; would most people recognize its name? and as teachers or principals do you make the policies to influence an entire state or nation?

I fully believe that the world can change with enough people with enough passion but I am simply curious of how many people with direct control are actually influenced by the brilliant ideas brought forth at TED.

So please try and limit the discussion of how many everyday people are impacted from TED and how those people will soon be our future or how those people have the power; I fully agree.

Ultimately I understand TED has had former Presidents, Presidential candidates, people like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates all as speakers; but the question is how many of their peers were in the crowd listening??

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  • Oct 9 2013: Your question provoked a conversation I overheard between my youngest son who is nine and his mother on the phone. We had been watching all the robot Talks one Saturday and I hadn't thought he was interested in any of the talks as he played Lego. I thought he was listening but couldn't tell.

    To my amazement on his call he exclaimed with certain detail all the Talks he had watched and highlighted how they made him feel. "Excited" I felt, I had accomplished my goal, which was to expose him to what will be his future.

    Education is over analyzed and most Talks want to be result oriented. We are all guilty of tinkering with education and its outlooks like we adjust a race car. But we aren't training drivers. So there it sits, waiting. We have infrastructure, commitment, buy in, resources, problem solving skills ets like a vehicle, shiny and new with all the latest but no drivers.

    Business leaders have imprinted education at all levels and lent their considerable expertise to where the system could be improved but none have suggested what education should be teaching. Business. K-12.

    We complain about the underclass not improving, poverty, reproduction, violence. These could be solved if we taught business in elementary school. Business solves problems and uses a community approach to resolving those problems. Get persons to think for themselves. Build confidence in youngsters. Teach them how to seek out new processes and develop these processes from the platform they learned not in college but in grade school.

    Bloomberg BusinessWeek has an excellent article on the value of SAT scores and interviews a university president who beat the odds without a high SAT outcome. This person was motivated and continues to motivate those in his sphere of influence by his real life experience. TED talks as with my son has become a real life experience and he may someday be the individual you are describing.
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    Oct 15 2013: I discovered TED (and Ken Robinson's talks) through a teacher from my former business school. I guess at least some of the ideas mentionned in the talks get taught to MBA students, who do have influence in large MNCs.
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      Oct 15 2013: That's nice to know......I really like your avatar......sooo nice!!
      Welcome to TED.
      I'm Mary ♥
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    Oct 9 2013: As Dino Walpa says below, you never know the influence of a TED talk, or any other talk given by someone with a noble cause.
    Here's an example from History of the power of influence of "a talk".

    In 1772 the Quaker John Woolman, an early American campaigner for the abolishment of the slave-trade, made his last visit to England (he died later that year in October) and preached a sermon against slavery on Brighton beach. Amongst the listeners was a 13-year old William Wilberforce, who was impressed and who later as a parliamentarian and christian convert became a leading light in abolishing slavery in England and the then colonies. Wilberforce died in 1883, 3 days after the Slavery Abolition Act was passed.
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    Oct 7 2013: Someone who has been to the TED Conference would be best equipped to answer, but those who attend the conference would very often fall into this category, and I think further influential people listen to TED talks online as well. On the talks page you can see various people's favorite talks. The people asked to share their favorites there are precisely the kind of influential people you have in mind. Example: http://www.ted.com/playlists/browse?filter=guest
  • Oct 15 2013: The people that see TED talks are the people that either go on TED and find them, see them shared on facebook, look for them online, or have someone show it to them. People who are trying to make their ideas more well known probably have their own ways of trying to get attention to their cause.

    I would be willing to discuss this more in depthly with you, Ryan. Please contact me privately.
  • Oct 10 2013: the problem is how do you apply the knowledge presented at TED??? I hear awesome ideas about science and research here. i assume that is just the wave of innovation that science and research has gained a sort of inertia and will continue to flourish unless someone stops it. i do hope other researchers/companies/individuals get a spark of ingenuity by being opened up to a new avenue here.. when it come to a lot of political/economic discussions i think although there may be interesting observations, is by and large trash.. too many pro central planners here at TED who have these enormous ideas of reconfiguring society in a way which is unfeasible to ever be true.
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    Oct 9 2013: I think sooner or later, people in the crowd wil see the brilliant ideas here becuase of every you and me in TED. In my view, it's like a good chance of education. Not all the knowledge here can be used in my real life just like what I've learned in my academic education, but some of them can enlighten me and inspire me sometimes.
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      Oct 15 2013: I use TED to show people the possibilities.
      I'm surrounded by negative Nellies........and TED is a dose of positivity.

      Those I share TED videos with are always amazed at learning about all the wonderful ideas that have been brought to fruition by determined individuals worldwide.
  • Oct 9 2013: How have they influenced your life?
  • Oct 8 2013: I think a lot of people see the ideas but the question is are the actionable and who can create those actions. It can take a lot of effort and persistence and time because changing the "old order" without revolution is never easy.
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    Oct 8 2013: Hello Ryan,
    Following the lead at the end of your introduction, suppose a top-job person gives a brilliant TED talk on the theme of putting into action the famous suggestion of "Love your neighbour as yourself"; assume all the "right" peers are listening and assume they are all inspired to act on this talk.
    Once they go back to their jobs on the Monday morning, all keen to carry out this wonderful new mission-agenda, they will encounter the power of "The System" which will immediately proceed to pour cold water on the idea and corrupt the whole new agenda. Something like the following will happen:

    New Agenda: “Love you neighbour as yourself”
    Illusion: My Self is separated from God
    Profusion: Everybody is separated from God
    Confusion: God is therefore irrelevant
    Deception: God does not exist
    Corruption: It’s a dog-eat-dog world
    Generalisation: Conflict is inevitable
    Conclusion: Wars are essential
    Collusion: “Just War” theology
    Resulting Action: Military-industrial complex, and war.

    ... and there, down the plug-hole goes the wonderful new initiative, co-opted, corrupted and neutralised by 'The System'.

    It needs very special people (like Nelson Mandela) who are spiritually tough enough to bring about positive change in The System itself. I am sure such top-down change can be done but the numbers of such quality people in the required relevant high positions are, I'm afraid, few and far between. And you also need a critical mass of such people, as well as something called "an idea whose time has come".
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    Oct 8 2013: All to often, 'people with direct control' spent most of their efforts to keep that very position, instead of looking at the bigger picture and to introduce new ideas to make this become a better one.

    Power is known to drawn in the moment, little resources left, let future generations deal with our problems.
  • Oct 7 2013: I think the butterfly effect may apply here.

    Perhaps the ripples from our conversations find their way into the lives of readers and writers.

    Perhaps in a few instances someone will be directly helped.

    Perhaps someone's thoughts will inspire other thoughts.

    The beautiful thing is that it is a way to inspire, capture and record positive thoughts. In this manner, TED conversations becomes its own source of positive energy on the internet.

    The internet needs more sources of positive energy.