TEDxBGU Final Wrap-Up

So there really isn't much left to say that wasn't shared in the previous post about the event. Perhaps the most interesting thing to share as a wrap-up to this endeavor is some technical data on the project as a whole: -12 TEDx talks

-171GB of raw data

-1,320 files

-74 hours of editing (plus an ungodly number of hours rendering and transcoding proxy files)

A significant amount of the editing time was spent not on primary editing but on cutting talks down to the 18-minute TED time limit. On the day of TEDxBGU we made the decision to tell our speakers that, yes, the time limit was 18 minutes but we didn't want them to feel the pressure of the clock on stage. We assured them that we wanted them to be comfortable and relaxed and that if their talks went over, we would work with them to cut the videos down to 18-minutes before submitting them to TED.

I think if this had not been a pro bono job on my part that decision would have been fine. What happened, however, was that seven out of the twelve talks went overtime with the outliers in this data set being 24 minutes, 26 minutes and 32 minutes. In my previous post I encouraged that anyone (including myself) doing video for a TED-style event invest a significant amount of time and legwork before the event making sure that framing, audio levels, white balance and file storage are all squared away on the day with a minimum of effort. After finishing these twelve videos, my passionate advice to TEDx organizers and speaker coaches is to not be afraid of instilling a fear of the clock. I watched the live stream of the TEDx Workshops from TED 2013 last month and the advice of Chris and others from TED reaffirmed the fact that time limits are not a necessary evil. They are a powerful tool that forces speakers to distill ideas down to the most important components.

A good speaker will effectively share a profound idea in 18 minutes. A great speaker understands her idea so well that she will be able to share it in half that time and still get the point across. TED's format does not pander to an audience with a short attention span. TED is built on the principle that an idea, however complicated and deep, must be understood to the extent that it can be communicated clearly and effectively in a short space of time. This concept is not in competition with the depth and breadth of academic research. Rather it recognizes that in a world of competing ideas and messages there must exist an extremely high standard by which ideas that can change the world must be tested.

So in conclusion, drill that time limit into your TEDx speakers' heads. Your video editor will thank you and it will make the ideas resented at your event more refined and more worthy of TED.

The 12 talks from TEDxBGU 2013 are available at the link below:

TEDx BGU 2013 - Full Event Playlist