TED Launches Animated TED-Ed Channel

TED, the nonprofit that presents “idea” conferences around the world, announced an intriguing new initiative yesterday: TED-Ed. Its goal, described in the video above, is to pair educators with animators, and create a series of lesson-based animated shorts aimed at teachers and high school students. Here’s an example of one of the lessons:

The Next Web has more info about plans for TED-Ed. The program officially launches next month, and they’re already soliciting reel submissions from animators. No word on what type of budgets they offer to filmmakers, but I’m assuming that filmmakers will be compensated for their labor somehow.

(Thanks, @tkraz)


  • akira

    OMG, can we please animate your great ideas you TED geniuses? i’m sure you have total respect for the animators, right?

    sorry just makes me think of all the people that have said, i’ve got this idea for an animated movie, but i cant draw.. would you want to animate it for me.. how hard would that be? how long would that take, etc. i’ll pay you after it makes money…

    seriously though, could lead to some advertising work, i guess

    howabout instead: pair animators up with playboy bunnies to collaborate on animated shorts

    • philippe

      Entertainement and school have been separated artificially. The blackboard animation of the lightening sketcher of the 19OO have left the classes for too long. To me, the idea to reunite them, if done creatively, is good.

      • Chris Sobieniak

        I wouldn’t mind that at all.

    • pat

      I would volunteer for this. no compensation required. I have total respect for myself and have never worked for free. Working for free is degrading like you said to many people like, I have this idea… But… I would volunteer for this.

      I love ted. Ted talks are amazingly inspirational. They’re a nonprofit so that somehow somewhere in my mind helps justify volunteering too.

      not everyone needs to sign up, but I will. TED is in my opinion an amazing non-profit and motivational resource. And I would love to just be a part of the organization.

  • Thomas

    This seems great! I love doing free work for a good cause!

  • http://enricocasarosa.com/wordpress.1 Enrico Casarosa

    Very Very cool!

  • Lippy

    Looks great!
    (why is it immed. assumed that there’s no $$?)

    • The Gee

      Probably because it isn’t explicitly mentioned and because there are for-profit businesses that would try to get the animation end for bubkiss.

      However, if the TED organization is looking for nominations then it would be weird to expect the person who is nominated to be contacted and asked to work for free.

      That wouldn’t be the best use of time for the people at TED or anyone considering working on these.

  • OtherDan

    I’d love to do it. But, there ought to be a modest budget for the animation. Animating 10min of speech is 100 times more work than standing on stage delivering the talk for 10 minutes.

    • The Gee

      That’s totally true. With something like this there are ways of approaching it which meet the goals and the needs of the piece and improve upon chatty Voice Over.

      I haven’t watched the previous animated pieces. However, apparently there are some so it is likely that they have expectations that *could* be both fun to do and be doable given the budget. Of course, I’m just guessing. To be honest, I’ve known about TED for years and I don’t think I have watched anything or really know what kind of stuff it goes over.

      Suffice it to say, I do hope what ever is made is interesting and makes potentially boring stuff pop. And, that the animators get a fair compensation for their time and efforts.

  • JG

    It is worth noting that speakers at TED conferences don’t get paid, they just get to be there for the entire conference. Otherwise a single ticket costs $6000 and it’s quite difficult to get a spot, since there are long lines for them.

    I’m speculating the payment might come in the form of a free pass to a conference.