Nothing's off topic
This conversation is meant to be one where nothing is off topic. That is, a conversation which is unconstrained and able to take on any direction.
The diversity of background and depth of thinking of TED conversation posters is outstanding. Where will an open conversation lead? Let's see.
What's on your mind?
We are all adults here and capable of negotiating differences between ourselves. Although heated disputes have emerged in these conversations, they have as yet not led to violence. And the process of the community resolving conflict is one thing this conversation could exemplify. Remember Chris Anderson's insight:
"You need clear, open visibility of what the best people in that crowd are capable of, because that is how you will learn how you will be empowered to participate."
To posters: PLEASE DO NOT DELETE YOUR POSTINGS. If you are unwilling to allow your contributions to remain indefinitely, please go elsewhere. Let this conversation be an unadulterated record of human interaction.
Closing Statement from Tim Colgan
Internet forums such as this have become the new "public space". As such, it is essential that users demand normal rights of free speech in the places that they congregate as in any other public space.
This conversation, though initially open-ended, was singled out by TED for early termination, despite the fact that it generated significant traffic and interesting conversations.
Transparency and openness is essential for the success of an endeavor such as the one TED conversations has claimed as its purpose.
This has become a dictatorial and closed environment.
"Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely" (see Birdia's Leopold Kohr quote "The Power Theory of Aggression" below for the more elaborate version).
In memory of Pabitra (PBUH).
For when this gets expunged - an unexpurgated version of this conversation will soon be placed here:
Googling "Nothing's off topic" should work soon.
And keep your eyes out for TEDanon. For those wishing to relieve the withdrawal pains from quitting TED.