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WELCOME! Every year, the TEDxEmory Conference draws bigger audiences, more views, and new ideas. We reached out to you this year because we believe in your ability to communicate the richness and importance of your topic to an interdisciplinary audience, and we find that your experience and idea strikes at the heart of TED’s mission: you have an idea worth spreading. We realize that you’re making a significant commitment in delivering a talk at TEDxEmory, and we know that you will not be taking this opportunity lightly. Not only will you be presenting to an audience from Emory and Atlanta, but your talk will be accessible online, and may even end up on, where most talks are viewed at least 100,000 times. Some have several million views. Take a minute to think about that. Don’t worry, though. The TEDxEmory Team is here to offer our full support, and we’ve built tools and a timeline to help you develop the best talk of your life. You should never hesitate to approach us with any of your questions, concerns, or feedback. The success of TEDxEmory depends on our collective ability to bring out the best in everyone. In this package, you’ll find a short background guide to TED and TEDxEmory, preparation tips, the TED Commandments, event specifications, and technological specifications. For promotional purposes, please keep in mind that this event is independently organized under a license from TED; it is not TED proper. It’s important to keep that distinction when you’re spreading your exciting news. Thank you once again! Sincerely, The TEDxEmory Team



Setting Out Let’s set one thing straight: TED presenters might make their TEDTalks look effortless, but there are hours of thinking, preparing, practicing, slide revision, and memorization involved behind each spectacular talk.

Developing Your Content Your TEDxTalk should be focused and sharp. It should go deep rather than broad. It should use visuals that develop your ideas, rather than distract from your purpose. It can include unique aspects of your personal experience or projects, but these should be powerful, illuminating, and succinct - your talk is about an idea worth spreading. If you tell a story, it should serve as a context or an example of your idea. Also please refrain from corporate, political, or religious plugs, as these are disallowed by the TEDx guidelines.

Timing Talks cannot run longer than 18 minutes. You should distill your talk to inform, challenge, and inspire.

Speaker Tips Practice really makes perfect. The ideal presenter speaks slowly and clearly, delivers his or her speech by memory, is passionate and engaging, and can think on his or her feet if need be

Visuals Less is more. A single, strong, graphic image or succinct line of text will tell your story better than a crowded collage or packed paragraph. Remember, people need to process everything you’re saying while simultaneously absorbing your slides. Rather than one complex slide, show several slides, each with one idea, image, or data point. The slides should complement your talk, not transcribe it. Our design staff will gladly help create a beautiful PowerPoint to accompany your talk.

Help If at any point you have any question, please do not be afraid to ask us. We are here to help you make the best talk possible and we are more than willing to help you out.


TED Commandments At TED, speakers are provided with the TED Commandments: simple guidelines for giving an unforgettable talk. You may find them a useful context for prepping your TEDxEmory presentation.


Thou shalt not simply trot out thy usual shtick


Thou shalt dream a great dream, show forth a wondrous new thing, or share something thou hast never shared before


Thou shalt reveal thy curiosity and thy passion


Thou shalt tell a story


Thou shalt freely comment the utterances of other speakers for the sake of blessed connection and exquisite controversy


Thou shalt not flaunt thine ego. Be thou vulnerable. Speak of thy failure as well as thy success


Thou shalt not sell from the stage: neither thy company, thy goods, thy writings, nor thy desperate need for funding; lest thou be cast aside into outer darkness


Thou shalt remember all the while: laughter is good


Thou shalt not read thy speech


Thou shalt steal the time of them that follow thee


TECHNICALS Things to Keep in Mind When Formulating Slides Your PowerPoint presentation will be run off our laptops and projected onto a screen behind you, unless you require something different for your presentation. Please refer to these specs as guidelines, but be prepared that they may be subject to change.

Presentation Size and Format Please design your presentation formatted in widescreen HD to best take advantage of our presentation space and the recording of your talk. We will have a laptop using PowerPoint hooked up to the auditorium A/V system, so please save your presentation in PowerPoint format if possible.

Widescreen HD 16:19 aspect ratio 1920x1080 pixels

Text Format Sans-serif fonts (e.g. Helvetica) may be easier to read at a distance than serif fonts (e.g. Times New Roman). Please keep a margin around your text, as you may when typing on paper. One or two lines of text on a slide will often suffice. Consider how each image and piece of text impress upon viewesers. To avoid last-minute glitches with your presentation, font files should be embedded in and/or provided with your presentation file.

Background A simple, soft background behind your text should complement and enhance the readability of your text. If you use a dark background, you may want to bold your text.

Graphs, Graphics, and Photos Make sure high-resolution pictures and graphics. You must properly license all images for TED’s use in worldwide video and web distribution. Please don’t use images from the web unless they are clearly licensed under Creative Commons. For data graphs or charts, be sure to keep text and labels readable as necessary.

Examples Five TEDTalks featuring clean, crisp, effect design that worked live and online:

John Doerr

Al Gore

Lary Lessig


Erin McKean

Frans de Waal

THE EVENT TEDxEmory 2014 will begin at 10:30a.m. on April 12, 2014 at the Woodruff Health Sciences Administration Building on Emory University’s campus, and will run until 6:00 p.m., followed by a catered reception for speakers, TEDx team members, and VIP guests. The day will be divided into four sessions with breaks in between each, with three and four presenters in each presentation block. Lunch will be provided for all attendees after the first session and coffee and other refreshments will be available otherwise. We hope to have you for the whole conference, unless there are extenuating circumstances beyond your control. We also ask that you are open to interact with audience members about the your idea and the event during the breaks. During the event, you will be seated in front of the audience and enter the stage from the floor. A professional video crew will work with our team and one of our team members will outfit you with a microphone as you prepare to take the stage. Before the event and between sessions, if needed, all speakers have open access to an offstage breakroom with refreshments and snacks. TED and TEDx audiences are just as diverse and experienced as their presenters, and we want to make TEDxEmory is a relaxing environment where everyone feels comfortable exchanging ideas. Our team at TEDxEmory has successfully run our main conference for the three straight years since its inception and it is smoother, more relaxed, and more professional each time. We look forward to being as accomadating as possible for you. It will be a long, but exhilarating and inspiring day.

Tentative Schedule Opening Remarks

Session 1

10:30am - 10:40am

10:40am - 12:05pm


12:05pm - 1:00pm

Session 2

1:00pm - 2:25pm

Session 3

2:45pm - 4:10pm

Session 4

4:30pm - 6:00pm



MATERIALS What We Need From You In order to most effectively organize our event, comply with TED guidelines, and provide the best possible experience for you and your audience, we need various materials or pieces of information from you.

i Headshot/Photo For marketing and event materials. Photos must be high resolution

Presentation Files We would like your files as soon as possible to optimize and organize. Includes fonts, images, videos, etc. PowerPoint preferable

Personal Minibio Roughly 150 words to best represent you in marketing and event materials

Speaker Release Please fill out the attached speaker release form as stipulated by TED guidelines. Necessary to publish your talk online or as a TEDTalk

T-Shirt Size Each speaker will receive a complimentary TEDxEmory 2014 t-shirt

Refunds Once ready, we will be glad to process reimbursements for relevant expenses

As always, we will work with you on any need and are always available to answer any question. We hope to work with you on organizing a memorable, professional event this spring. If you ever have a comment, request, or inquiry please contact the director of our speakers team, Jane Singer. You can reach her by email at or by phone at (206) 290-1933.



Speakers packet web  
Speakers packet web