TED, the popular organization known for its thought leader conferences, today is launching a new social platform to augment its reach beyond the current five-day long, 1300-attendee conference. The platform, dubbed TED Conversations, will follow a Q&A-based format similar to Quora but with a few notable exceptions.
First, conversations will be divided into three main categories – questions, ideas, and debates. In addition, each conversation will have specific expiration dates ranging from one day to two weeks depending on the topic. These features have been implemented to encourage thoughtful and active participation between users and thought leaders with busy schedules. Third, TED is bringing to the table the very thought leaders which they are best-known for hosting.
For the site’s initial discussions at launch, TED has lined up best-selling author Seth Godin, game designer Jane McGonigal, and RISD president John Maeda as thought leader participants. The discussions will also be able to link to TED’s popular TEDTalk web videos, which draw millions of monthly visits already.
The combination of these videos and now live conversations further enhance user participation with the conference at large. In terms of goals, TED Conversations has been designed to help further the non-profit’s goal of global participation in conjunction with TEDTalk and the TED Open Translation Project as well as generate revenue via brand partnerships.