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14 February

OV gives Social Media TEDx talk

Fantastic news for OV Drew Benvie (K 85-96) who was recently chosen to give a TEDx talk! TEDx is a project that works at a local level while maintaining the media organisation, TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design)’s, overall mission which is to research and discover “ideas worth spreading.”

Drew’s talk was titled ‘How do we reboot Social Media’ and explored the incredible influence and damage that can be done using social media, including fake news, trolling, political meddling, online bullying and cyber-attacks. Social media has been blamed for causing depression and for providing a platform which could promote harmful content. Drew had some startling statistics to share about the misuse of social media such as the fact that in the first 9 months of 2019, Facebook deleted 5.4 billion fake Facebook accounts. Drew said this is equivalent to two thirds of the population of planet Earth.

OV Drew Benvie TED Talk

In his talk, Drew explains that he believes that social media can be a force for good and he aims to make social media safer. Drew wrote the first page about social media on Wikipedia back in 2006. He is Founder & CEO at social media agency ‘Battenhall’ so is incredibly knowledgeable and well-placed to see the dangers but also the incredible opportunities that social media can offer us today. Drew states in his talk that he is “..on a mission to save social media” and his talk gives brilliant and practical insights into how this could be achieved. Social media has some amazing benefits such as bringing us together and giving us access to information and Drew teaches three skills to help listeners use social media and to make it a safer place:

1. How to spot trolls and bots and how to report them

2. Filtering out fake content

3. The power of positivity

Drew says, “It was such an honour to be asked to deliver a TED talk, and absolutely one of those Bucket List moments. I also got to meet some of the most inspiring people along the way too. It was a humbling and eye-opening experience from start to finish. And everything I put into the talk is now being used to build the business I founded six years ago, so it’s all systems go!”

You can watch Drew’s powerful and insightful TED talk online here.