TEDxGoldstar And Jim McCarthy's Experiences With TED
Goldstar held a live simulcast of TED2011 on March 2, called TEDxGoldstar. This invitation-only event included Los Angeles innovators, thought leaders, entrepreneurs and media in a unique event encouraging discussion and intellectual curiosity.
Goldstar, a Los Angeles-based company, is aimed at bringing live events to a larger market by providing ideas, half-price tickets, and reviews.
Started by Jim McCarthy, Robert Graff, and Richard Webster, Goldstar has become one of the largest ticket distribution companies in the United States. Goldstar has about 4,000 venue partners.
Neon Tommy was able to talk to Jim McCarthy, CEO of Goldstar, about his partnership with TED and how TED has affected his life today. Here is a transcript of the interview:
NT: How has Goldstar and TED's partnership impacted you personally, and how do you think it will impact the Los Angeles community?
JM: I have been a TEDster for several years, and I've gotten so much out of it, both in a business sense and a personal sense, that I've wanted to share that. TED is very much about sharing, so I thought how could I put that into practice, besides a more day-to-day lives.
Last year, I went to my friends at TED, and asked, "What can we do to help?" I want to emphasize that it is a partnership, not a philanthropy, but I asked what aspects they needed help with. TED came back saying that their TEDx program needed support. Since Goldstar is all about live events, TEDx is the perfect tool for bring the experience of the live TED event to more people.
At Goldstar, we encourage people to go out more, and TEDx is the perfect way to do that. TEDx is a way for people to have live experiences all over the world. The main needs that TED needed for TEDx involved financial needs, expertise needs, and logistical needs, and Goldstar can really do all of those things. We just asked TED to really throw us into the middle of the community, and we left it at this very open premise. As opportunites have come up to help, we've been jumping in. We've already encouraged a couple of TEDx events.
NT: Is Goldstar interested in doing more of their own TEDx events or providing support for others to run a TEDx?
JM: We'll do both. There is clearly interest within the Goldstar community, but we've already started talking to other individuals about starting their own TEDx events. [It's about drawing] more people into TED2011, be it by TEDxGoldstar or someone else.
NT: Can you elaborate on your personal experiences with TED?
JM: Well, I spoke at the TED University Conference once, talking about live events today, and it was a great experience. TED is an organization that is truly careful about what content goes on stage, and I personally worked with the leadership to refine my presentation to a surprisingly high level. Even though TED has many different speakers, the level of care that they put towards each presentation is truly remarkable.
NT: What was your favorite TED talk of the day?
JM: There are two that I have really enjoyed. Morgan Spurlock's talk was the most entertaining by far, and he made a very interesting point as well. The first session had one of those TED moments, where it just hits you, with Deb Roy's talk about recording interactions in his home for five years, which gave a real emotional punch. It was really terrific.
NT: What is your favorite TED talk that you have ever seen?
JM: The TED talk that was probably the most engaging to me was given by Ben Zander, conductor of the Boston Philharmonic. He gave a presentation where he proved that everybody loves classical music. He really helped people understand that enjoying the music comes from the emotion of the piece.
This might sound dull when I explain it, but it was a great talk. It was almost about making big assumptions rather than small assumptions, and trying to take smaller steps rather than big steps at a time. This comes back to the live entertainment industry because we need to ask, "How can this be better?" By the end of the talk, the crowd was standing up singing, which really is quite incredible.
NT: Any final comments or remarks?
JM: I really want to send a message to students and youngsters. TED needs students to really participate however they can. Apply to TED Fellows, go to TEDx conferences, TED conferences, go to the website, watch the talks.
In a bigger picture, I would tell younger people that you need to look at your future career, and try to go beyond your self-interest. Realize that if you think of wins for everybody, then the win for yourself will be a lot larger.
If TED can provide that to you, then great. If you're looking at Goldstar, we try to create a win for our venue partners, members, and build a stronger company because of that. I strongly believe in a win-win-win-win philosophy, and I feel that if you apply that from the start, you will see tremendous results in the future.
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