Linda Ashworth

English Horn player, San Luis Obispo Symphony

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What would be some good ways to effect a cultural exchange between Long Beach and TEDActive?

Friends who have been to Long Beach have lamented a feeling of social stratification "bubbleness" there that doesn't exist at TEDActive. Is there aw way to cross-fertilize a bit more?

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    Mar 6 2011: I've not been to Palm Springs to observe TEDActive, but I have seen a bunch of TED events at many scales and sizes. My first guess is that the phenomenon observed is probably related to size and space. The Long Beach event is the largest of all the TED events and it takes place over a big footprint with many opportunities to split off and out. There were people I knew were at TED this year that I didn't see--and part of my job to look at the audience and make photos. :) TEDGlobal is half the size. It's still been spread around Oxford a bit, but the opportunities to split off are more limited. I'd guess that the same kind of effect, but more magnified, is happening at TEDActive. You guys are all together in one venue and the number of people is such that it's very much more intimate. Less opportunity to split off changes the dynamic a lot.

    They're all great for different reasons. Maybe the best advice for repeating TEDsters is personally directed cross-fertilization? IE, for those that feel stratification to shake things up year to year. Try out other events. Go to Palm Springs instead of Long Beach. Or head to Edinburgh for TEDGlobal.
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    Mar 6 2011: People hang out with their friends. Even at TEDActive. People hang out with people who share their interests (fun things to do when not working). Many people who go to TEDActive attendees purposefully try to mix it up a bit -- they sit in different spots for each session, eat meals with different people, talk with people they might not ordinarily have conversations with. That's fascinating to me. It's kind of a game. HALF the people attending Palm Springs were there for the first time. I'm betting that demographic is not the same for Long Beach. I don't know what the age & socioeconomic demographics were at either place, though I'm betting Palm Springs has the younger less affluent crowd. (I work a second job to be able to afford to go.) And while Palm Springs attendees are curious about the Long Beach attendees, I wonder to what extent the reverse is true.