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Behind The Scenes At TEDxSummerisle

TEDxSummerisle slide

Weird Shit Con co-organizer Adam Rothstein writes about his role in the TEDxSummerilse hoax:

I was never personally concerned about the potential consequences of staging of an act of violence on Twitter, because the moment anyone attempted to ascertain where precisely this violence was occurring, they would see the Wikipedia page revealing that Summerisle is a fictional locale. On the other hand, with the TEDx conference, we all exploited the trust of our social networks. Our fake Twitter accounts prattled away, posting silly observations and chatting with each other, as we enjoyed mocking some of our less favorite (real life) personalities. But with our real Twitter accounts, through which we typically voice our real opinions and observations in a way that we hope people will generally take seriously, we retweeted the postings of our fake Twitter accounts. By association, we shared our followers’ trust of us with these non-persons, these digital patsies. Among all of our past tweets—the articles we’ve shared with our real Twitter accounts, the experiences we broadcast, the history-making events we’ve witnessed, the photos of breakfasts we’ve taken—are these lying tweets like black marks in our streams. They are not ironic “retweets do not imply endorsement” posts, but as precisely the opposite. We knew that retweeting these tweets implied reality, and we used that to give our fairy tale the weight of truth.

And a fairy tale is what it was. The talk titles and subject matter were ridiculous, each a parody in and of themselves.

Full Story: Rhizome: The Strange Rituals of TEDxSummerisle

Previously: Performative Group Horror Fiction: TEDxSummerisle

Performative Group Horror Fiction: TEDxSummerisle

It started like any other TEDx…

TEDxSummerisle

Then things started getting scary:

tedxsummerisle

Full archive on Storify

Statement from TEDxSummerisle:

Thank you everyone who volunteered their time and labour to create this strange event, the worst TEDx in history. To be clear: this was a piece of experimental horror fiction. No TED attendees were harmed in the making of this event and we aren’t associated with either TED or either of the Wicker Man films.

Oliver Sacks Discusses Hallucination

Oliver Sacks Sees Things Differently Now

As part of their “TED Q & A” series, Wired published an interview with Neurologist Oliver Sacks where he discusses visual hallucination and his experiences after losing central vision in his right eye.

To compensate for the missing visual data once supplied by his right eye, his brain has projected hallucinations and patterns onto the dark stage -– a phenomenon common to people who have lost their sight. Ever curious about the mind’s varied responses to disease, Sacks has chronicled it all in a series of unpublished journals containing drawings and writings.

Last year at the Technology Entertainment and Design conference, one of the most popular talks was given by Jill Bolte Taylor, a neuroanatomist who described what occurred in her mind and body as she experienced a stroke. On Thursday, Sacks will speak at TED about the mysteries of perception and what occurs in the mind when the body loses its senses. He spoke with Wired.com about how the mind sometimes plays tricks on what we see and what it has meant to lose part of his vision.

The complete article can be found here.

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