Aubrey de Grey of the SENS Foundation is an advocate for the development of rejuvenation biotechnology; he gives a great many presentations in the course of any given year, mostly in Europe and the US. Earlier this month he was invited to the University of Delaware by the Socratic Club there to talk about the Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence (SENS). Video of the presentation was recently uploaded to YouTube:
Dr. Aubrey de Grey from the SENS Foundation gives a talk on regenerative medicine at the University of Delaware on October 2, 2012. He is introduced by Marvin Whitaker, who is President of the Socratic Club and is a PhD student in the Department of Political Science and International Relations at the University of Delaware. This event was hosted by the Socratic Club and co-hosted by the University of Delaware's Center for Science, Ethics, and Public Policy.
I'll note that a great many other videos of presentations, lectures, and interviews with de Grey have made their way to YouTube over the past five or six years. This is the age of the moving image, it seems: resist it at your own risk. It is enough to make we poor scriveners, typesetters, and readers feel like throwbacks to an earlier, more Dickensian era.
More seriously, it is worth considering that some channels in the grand, many-threaded, endless conversation that is our culture have little to do with the written word. Television is one of these, a ruthless stamp of uniformity fallen upon the vast diversity of oral traditions that preceded it. But the centralized broadcast model of television is being overtaken in importance by dirt-cheap video recording, editing, and delivery - everyone can join in, and videos become just another way to converse. This sea change is enabled by the internet and its associated computing and software technologies, and shows no signs of slowing down.
The technology ecosystems that allow for easy personal video distribution enable a growth in grassroots advocacy. I'd argue this to be the case because they offer an easier path to becoming a persuasive, widely-heard advocate than the traditional route that involves learning how to write well and convincingly. Learning to write is a considerably harder and more drawn out a process, in my experience at least. Wherever a particular goal becomes less costly in time and money you will see more people achieve that end.
I don't think we're far enough down this path of video as a medium for communication to see how it will eventually settle down to something approaching maturity, but it is worth keeping an eye on successful advocates and talking heads in that arena, if only to see what can be achieved when people put their minds to it.