What do a talk entitled “How to be a Peacemaker“ by an entrepreneur about his success in a trampoline hall and a call for more political commitment have in common? Well, they last precisely 12 minutes – at least at Hamburg’s 12min.me event that has become a big hit in Germany and elsewhere in just three years.
Bell tolls after 12 minutes
The rules are simple – each participant can talk about a random issue for 12 minutes maximum. A bell sounds loudly to signal the end. Then the audience has 12 minutes maximum to ask questions. Three talks per evening are held and the intermission leaves plenty of time for networking over drinks and snacks. The original event, Ignite Talks, will be held in December – normally on every second Thursday of the month in Absolute Software GmbH on Jungfernstieg. The issues are not limited to any particular sector, but often focus on digitalisation in society.
12min.me is increasingly popular and attracting fans. Almost one third of people at the event are newcomers. Various offshoots focus on health and medicine and are held in the University Hospital Hamburg-Eppendorf. Yet another offshoot called Code Rouge focuses on money and finances and is backed by Haspa.
Another event called “In Flagranti” focuses on legal issues. Virtual reality, the Internet of Things are other issues at 12min.me. During an exciting start-up slam, six start-ups present amusing presentations and vie for the audience’s attention. The volume of the applause after each presentation decides the winner who gets a golden anchor.
12min.me in over eight cities
Leading figures from Silicon Valley recently gave talks lasting over 12 minutes in the U.S. consulate to a full house. 12min.me is also held in Munich, where it recently celebrated its second anniversary. Six other cities including Budapest also host the free events, which anyone can attend. The organising team does not make a profit, as the series of events is the reward.