OK… it should probably surprise no one that a technology, entertainment, and design conference where a single ticket costs SIX THOUSAND DOLLARS is an elite affair. Organized by elites. Presented by elites. For elites.
But sometimes the presentations of new technologies are just so damn cool you want to believe that they’re not like all those other elites.
At the most recent TED, Nick Hanauer, who describes himself as a wealthy entrepreneur, gave a very short talk on how the middle class are the real job creators in the United States economy.
This was apparently ‘too partisan’ for TED to release in video format — although it is part of their stated ‘mission’ to disseminate information from the ultra-pricey conference to ‘the rest of us’ — and although TED has presented roughly 100 politically themed video presentations of TED presentations in the past.
When word leaked out that TED was censoring one of their presenters, Chris Anderson, TED’s founder took to his TEDchris blog to issue a mealy-mouthed ‘explanation’ for the censorship that, judging from the flood of scalding negativity in the comment section of the post, was not received at all well by TED fans and friends.
Or perhaps we should say ex-TED fans and friends.
You can read TED founder Chris Anderson’s exceptionally poorly received ‘explanation’ and the responding comments here: https://tedchris.posterous.com/131417405
We can’t guarantee that all those comments will still be there when you get there — there are at least several hundreds as this is being written (although the ‘high-tech’ TED blog software counts them as “0 comments” — shoulda used WordPress — oh wait, I guess that’s not elite enough for TED.)
It seems that the last time there was a controversy involving TED founder Anderson, it was because he had insulted TED guest presenter Sarah Silverman in a Twitter tweet and then — when the fur started flying — deleted it.
UPDATE: This looks like it’s turning out to be a real publicity nightmare for TED.
Anderson, who, we would have thought, has at least half a clue about technology, chose to make his lame apologia on the Posterous system.
Unbeknownst to those posting — there was NO notice anywhere — everyone posting comments (which are running about 40-1 by my guesstimate against Anderson) with their real email address is receiving an email every single time someone posts a comment– and since there are over 400 comments and counting, this is becoming something of a major annoyance for these people.
It appears that a complaint is in the offing to the FTC for not complying with Federal anti-spam laws that require unsubscribe notices in bulk email (the emails have no way of unsubscribing and if one then signs up for a Posterous account with that email and changes his preference settings to NO notifications — they keep on coming anyway! )
And extraordinarily incompetent operation all the way from TED founder Chris Anderson to the apparent techno-know-nothings at Posterous.