BIL is to TED as BarCamp is to Foo Camp

I've actually never been to TED (which takes place this week in Monterey), though many friends and colleagues find great value in it. I'm sure they're right, I've just always ended up with work obligations around the dates -- and if $6G is burning a hole in my pocket, I'm more likely to blow it on hot shoes or a new laptop, not that this is wise. But look, you could haul the pumps and lappie to BIL, *and* be the center of attention ("Who speaks? You."), with money left over for enough quad-cappucinos to stay awake during the presentations:

BIL loves TED. TED is a great place to sit and listen to interesting ideas. Many of those ideas make it online, and millions get to experience them.

The catch for many of us is that TED is $6,000, which is too expensive for most people, including a great number with good ideas worth spreading. BIL has been created as a free space for people with ideas to come together and share them.

Our event is self-organizing, emergent, and anarchic. Nobody is in charge. If you want to come just show up. If you've got an idea to spread start talking. If someone is saying something good, stop and listen.

We hope BIL can be a perfect match to TED.

I like the fact that bottom-up, crowd-organized events like this exist to counterbalance the elite top-down ones. I spent some years organizing the latter -- there's a place in the world for them. A lot of great ideas have originated from, or reached the world through TED, I mean no disrespect. But the free-for-alls are equally important. (image: Thomas Hawk; thanks for the tip hundredsofthousands)

Previously on Boing Boing:
* TED talks debut in-flight on Virgin America this week