Go behind the scenes of a TEDTalk

Posted by: Emily McManus

It’s our third anniversary of posting TEDTalks free to the world! We started in June 2006 with our first six talks — including Sir Ken Robinson, Al Gore, Majora Carter … Three years and 486 talks later, we hope you’ll enjoy this mini-documentary, “Behind the TEDTalk.” It stars TED Curator Chris Anderson and the TED team, and a roster of speakers you love: Elizabeth Gilbert, Hans Rosling, Seth Godin and more, in a 6-minute look behind the scenes:

Download the “Behind the TEDTalk” documentary:

+ Zipped MP4
+ Unzipped MP4
+ Unzipped high-def (480p)

Our thanks to the m ss ng p eces team, and to the speakers, thinkers and doers whose interviews tell this story.


Comments (15)

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  • Matt Gorbet commented on Aug 9 2010

    I share this video with our TEDx crew and show it to our TEDx speakers right before the day begins to get everyone in the mood. It has enormous impact. Thanks TED and Missing Pieces for putting this together.

  • João Pedro Caetano commented on Jul 20 2009

    I wish we could have more glimpses on the “Behind-The-Scenes”.

    When I watched this I thought of two things, seeing its ‘cinematic’/’theatrical’ potential:

    -I know TED is modern and slick in its architecture and style, but I couldn’t help thinking of the talks being given in a 19th Century surrounding, wood and lamps and brass around the talkers. Almost like the surgical amphitheatres, but bigger and up to date.

    The other thing was:
    -Instead of documentaries or fiction movies in cinemas, I wonder if talks could become another pillar in the cinema experience, to educate and inspire people.
    We all know the spread of “An Inconvenient Truth” and it’s impact. Imagine giving the most important and inspiring “Call-To-Action” talks the same sort of resources and grand visuals, getting out of the podium and out into the world where the project already are taking place, and put them out there.
    I can only see these kinds of talks benefiting from a longer time to express themselves.

  • Henrik Ahlen commented on Jul 20 2009

    What a great video! I really appreciated this peek behind the scenes, getting a feel for all the hard, very professional work that build the TED experience! Please do more such films!

  • john paul caponigro commented on Jul 19 2009

    Great stuff! Do more! This is exactly what all media creators, both insiders and outsiders, need to do more of. Inform viewers on the goals, people, practices, conditions, contexts, and results involved in creating information. Meta-information makes information truly informative. Bravo! Encore!

  • Javier Fadul commented on Jul 18 2009

    Thank you all so much for the dedication to share all these great ideas with the world. After 3 years of learning with you, I feel a tremendous love and admiration for every person involved in this project. Thank you and everyone who is helping make this project what it is.

  • Radiance Within commented on Jul 17 2009

    Thanks for making this video and sharing it on here. It was nice to see the people and what efforts they put in to make these fascinating talks possible. TED has made “18 minute talk” a new unit of spreading information and ideas, as mentioned by one of the speakers.

  • Manolis Polychronides commented on Jul 16 2009

    We needed this inspiring short video on the art of making a TED talk so as to have something solid behind the scenes, to shed some light on the shadows behind the stage. Beautifully crafted and powerfully done!

    It has been almost a year since I have been exposed to TED and lately I see it becoming an integral part of who I am and who I aspire to become. I once again want to express my gratitude to all TEDsters for slowly tinkering a channel to allow Human creativity, beauty, inspiration to flow. And it’s effects are increasing exponentially…

    Keep up the good work!

  • Charles Hisey commented on Jul 16 2009

    I have been watching the TED Talks since I was 20. They have grown to be one of the primary influences on my thinking in my young adulthood. From Howe and Straus -

    “[T]his generation will show more team like spirit and more like mindedness in action than most Americans then alive will recall ever having seen in young people… Millennials will carry out whatever crisis mission they are assigned as long as they can connect it with their own secular blueprint for progress… Whatever their elder-bestowed mission, these rising youths will not disappoint. Assuming the crisis turns out well, Millennials will be forever honored as a generation of civic achievers.”

    I can safely say that TED is, for people like me, a great source of inspiration to be that great generation envisioned above. You have helped bring focus to our energy and inspire me to believe that it is possible to rise above the negativity and mediocrity I am surrounded by. Please keep up the good work.

  • Philipp Schaefer commented on Jul 16 2009

    Great – thanks for sharing!
    And thanks to all in the backstage to make this happen.
    Keep on!

  • Phil xr commented on Jul 16 2009

    TED congratulations on your 3rd anniversary. You have added so much value to my online experience with this brilliant idea of bringing great minds together to speak and inspire.

    I have learnt to look at the world in a slightly different way and it has made me more of a thinker. I highly appreciate all the speakers who’ve spoken so far and the ones to come, for inspiring thousands of people, who otherwise wouldn’t bother.

    I hope TED keeps up the good work and continues on its path of great ideas….