TEDxAuckland 2013, it was emotional

Words: Jamie Joseph

The legend musician that is Richard Nunns said in his TED talk on Saturday, “I can spend three hours talking on a marae, and I’m meant to come here and say something meaningful in 18 minutes.” After his talk @MichaelHales on Twitter posted “Learned more about NZ from Richard Nunns than 4 years living here. Wonderful #tedxakl.” So yes, it can be done, and so it was, again and again. I tried to gather all the social media feedback the day after the event, copying and pasting quotes into one single document, and by the time I hit page 20 I decided, enough already! The people have spoken: New Zealanders really do have some incredible ideas worth sharing.

Throughout the day original and inspiring moments jumped out into the audience, rattled brains with two hands, and tugged on the heartstrings. There was utter silence, standing ovations, laughter, and even some tears. And just as it’s challenging for speakers to deliver a powerful message in under 18 minutes, can you imagine how difficult it would be to cram all the highlights of the day into one short blog? So look out for the TEDxAuckland videos as they make their debut through cyberspace, and we’ll be adding our own little behind the scenes footnotes, because it really is an evolving story and the TEDxAuckland team are very much looking forward to taking you all on this journey with us.

The day after TEDxAuckland I got a call from Matthew Simmons, one of our 2012 speakers. He told me that after the event this year him and his wife Julie had a long talk and have now decided to stay in New Zealand. (In the last few months they’ve had offers from around the world to set up shop overseas)

He explained to me that there is just so much happening and intersection because of the energy around TEDxAuckland, and because of that they want to be close to those that are part of this movement. Like he said in his TED talk last year, “I want to keep doing cool shit with amazing people.”

And this is the whole reason our captain Elliott Blade, the producer of TEDxAuckland, started the event last year. In his closing remarks, with the core crew up on stage, Elliott said, “I got fed up of seeing Kiwis always looking for inspiration overseas instead of right here in our own backyard.”

Scanning through the comments and tweets one of the highlights for the TEDxAuckland crew was seeing how so many people that were in the audience were inspired to get out there and try something new.

In the words of this year’s TEDxAuckland speaker Welby Ings, “Ideas are not safe. And learning is not safe.”

So get amongst it, be brave, and keep in touch.

Jamie Joseph is a writer and an environmental activist. She will be returning to her African homeland in October to join the war on poaching. Follow her journey @ savingthewild.com – every voice counts.

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