You know, I've always quite liked people who treat other people, however exalted their position, as ordinary people. But the inside view on TED which Eddie Huang has just granted us makes them sound demented.
He explains to the JRE show that on top of making his presentation to the conference, he was expected to attend all the meet-and-greet events for 12-16 hours a day - and when he sloped off to make a podcast, they took his TED fellowship away from him.
That's bad enough, but the power-crazed ones in charge of the conference refused to let him pay for his own hotel in order that he shouldn't have to room with a stranger. When he wanted to spend his birthday, which happened to fall inside the TED week, with his girl, they said no.
Frankly, I've enjoyed TED talks and I have recomended them to many people, but this is starting to leave a nasty taste in my mouth. They don't pay their speakers, expect them to attend everything every day for a week, and room them in bad hotels with strangers. What in hell is the $16 million they reap in attendance fees going to, then? Oh sorry - probably it funds their secretive anonymous scientific board?
I'm beginning to thing we need an antiTED - non elitist, non expensive, non censoring free and open and transparent. Maybe THAT's an idea worth sharing.