Playlist TEDTalks

The 20 most-watched TED Talks to date

Posted by: Kate Torgovnick May

TED is dedicated to ideas worth spreading. And that leaves many wondering exactly which ideas have been spread the most widely in the six years that TEDTalks videos have been available online. Here, a list of the 20 most-watched talks on all the platforms we track: TED.com, YouTube, iTunes, embed and download, Hulu and more, as of November 2012.

From education to brain function to inspiring messages to techno-possibilities, this list represents quite a breadth of topics.

  1. Sir Ken Robinson says schools kill creativity (2006): 14,850,200 views
  2. Jill Bolte Taylor‘s stroke of insight (2008): 11,225,783
  3. Pranav Mistry on the thrilling potential of SixthSense (2009): 9,897,347
  4. David Gallo‘s underwater astonishments (2007): 8,204,051
  5. Pattie Maes and Pranav Mistry demo SixthSense (2009): 7,747,690
  6. Tony Robbins asks Why we do what we do (2006): 7,564,235
  7. Simon Sinek on how great leaders inspire action (2010): 7,539,516
  8. Brene Brown talks about the power of vulnerability (2010): 5,861,510
  9. Steve Jobs on how to live before you die (2005): 5,444,022
  10. Daniel Pink on the surprising science of motivation (2009): 5,534,123
  11. Hans Rosling shows the best stats you’ve ever seen (2006): 5,249,928
  12. Elizabeth Gilbert on nurturing your creative genius (2009): 5,020,869
  13. Arthur Benjamin does mathemagic (2005): 4,951,918
  14. Mary Roach on 10 things you didn’t know about orgasm (2009): 4,793,334
  15. Dan Gilbert asks: Why are we happy? (2004): 4,759,217
  16. Keith Barry does brain magic (2004): 4,475,303
  17. Stephen Hawking asks big questions about the universe (2008): 4,470,236
  18. Johnny Lee shows Wii Remote hacks for educators (2008): 3,997,174
  19. Jeff Han demos his breakthrough multi-touchscreen (2006): 3,982,775
  20. Barry Schwartz explores the paradox of choice (2005): 3,836,350

Compare and contrast how the 2012 list of the most popular talks stacks up to the 2011 list, written on the fifth birthday of TEDTalks videos.