Scroll Top

TED vs. TEDx – The Key Differences and Similarities

TED and TEDx are two of the most popular platforms for spreading innovative ideas, inspiring talks, and thought-provoking discussions. But what exactly sets them apart? What makes a TED talk different from a TEDx talk?

TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) is a global non-profit organization that organizes conferences and events centered around ideas worth spreading, featuring curated speakers and performances.

TEDx is an independently organized event, licensed by TED, that follows the same format and mission of sharing inspiring ideas but is organized locally and on a smaller scale, often with a specific theme or focus.

TED vs. TEDx

TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) is a global non-profit organization that organizes conferences and events centered around ideas worth spreading.TEDx (Technology, Entertainment, Design + x) are independently organized TED-like events, licensed by TED, but organized locally by individuals or organizations.
Its events are large-scale conferences with curated speakers and live audiences, typically featuring high-profile speakers and performers.Its events are smaller, independently organized events that follow the TED format, but with local speakers and themes, and can range in size from small gatherings to larger conferences.
Speakers are carefully curated by TED’s global team based on their expertise, accomplishments, and unique ideas.TEDx events have their own selection process and organizers have autonomy in choosing speakers, often selecting local experts, community members, or individuals with unique perspectives.
Its talks are proprietary and require permission from TED to use, reproduce, or distribute.Its talks are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND) license, allowing for non-commercial sharing with proper attribution, but without allowing modifications or commercial use.
TED has a well-established global brand and logo, known for its high-quality events, speakers, and TED Talks.TEDx events are branded independently with their own logo, but must include “x” in the logo to distinguish it from the official TED events.
Its events are organized globally and have a widespread international presence, with conferences held in various countries and languages.Its events are organized locally and can be found in many cities and communities around the world, offering a more grassroots and community-driven approach to spreading ideas.

What is TED?

TED is a nonprofit organization that provides a platform for sharing ideas and stories. TEDx events are independently organized TED events. Both TED and TEDx events feature speakers who share their ideas in 18-minute talks. The main difference between the two is that while TED is focused on spreading ideas, TEDx events are focused on local communities and connections.

What is TEDx?

TEDx events are TED-style events that are organized independently, on a community level. TEDx events can be organized by anyone who wishes to create a TED-like experience in their own community.

TEDx events and regular TED events are that TEDx events are not run by the TED organization. Instead, they are organized by individuals or groups who want to bring the TED experience to their own community.

TEDx events are not run by the official TED organization, they still adhere to many of the same guidelines and principles. For example, all TEDx talks must be 18 minutes or less, and all speakers must be carefully vetted before being selected to speak.

Similarities between TED and TEDx

TED and TEDx both are organized conferences that feature short, carefully curated talks on a wide variety of topics, ranging from the personal to the political, the scientific to the artistic.

TED and TEDx events are typically held over the course of a day or weekend, and include time for networking and socializing as well as for attending talks.

TEDx events are organized and run entirely by volunteers, while TED is a for-profit organization. This means that TEDx events can be more local and responsive to their communities than TED events, which are typically much larger in scale.

Additionally, while all talks at both types of events must be pre-screened and approved by the organizers, TEDx speakers are generally not famous or well-known figures; rather, they tend to be regular people with something interesting or important to say.

Key differences between TED and TEDx

TED is a much larger organization with a more global reach than TEDx.

TEDx events are organized and run by volunteers, while TED events are organized and run by paid staff. While anyone can apply to give a talk at a TEDx event, TED events are invite-only.

difference between TED and TEDx

Pros and cons of attending a TED or a TEDx event

Some of the pros of attending a TED event include the following:

  • The speakers at TED events are usually world-renowned and highly respected in their field.
  • The topics covered at TED events are usually very interesting and thought-provoking.
  • TED events are well-organized and run smoothly.
  • Attending a TED event can be a great networking opportunity.

Some of the cons of attending a TED event include the following:

  • TED events can be expensive to attend.
  • The crowd at TED events can sometimes be very elitist and exclusive.
  • TED events can be very overwhelming, especially for first-time attendees.

Some of the pros of attending a TEDx event include the following:

  • TEDx events are usually much cheaper to attend than TED events.
  • The crowd at TEDx events is often more diverse and inclusive than the crowd at TED events.
  • TEDx events often feel more intimate and personal than TED events.

Some of the cons of attending a TEDx event include the following:

  • Limited Speaker Quality Control
  • Lack of Diversity in Topics and Perspectives
  • Potential for Overgeneralization and Simplification

Tips for organizing a successful TEDx event

First and foremost, TEDx events are organized by volunteers, so it’s important to have a dedicated and passionate team to help with the planning and execution.

Secondly, TEDx events are typically non-profit events, so it’s important to have sponsors and donations lined up to cover the costs. TEDx events are all about sharing ideas and inspiring change, so be sure to choose a theme and lineup of speakers that will resonate with your audience.


In conclusion, TED events are known for their rigorous curation and high-quality talks, TEDx events may have variable quality control, limited diversity, and potential commercialization.

However, both TED and TEDx events offer opportunities for learning, inspiration, and networking, and it’s important to research and evaluate each event individually before attending.

Featured Posts!
Most Loved Posts
Clear Filters