Bill Gates Releases a Swarm of Mosquitoes on Conference Crowd

I don’t know what to say about this. I mean, it’s been confirmed, but I still can’t believe it’s true.

Microsoft founder turned philanthropist Bill Gates released a glass full of mosquitoes at an elite technology conference to make a point about the deadly disease malaria.

“Malaria is spread by mosquitoes,” Gates said while opening a jar onstage at the Technology, Entertainment, Design Conference — a gathering known to attract technology kings, politicians, and Hollywood stars.

“I brought some. Here I’ll let them roam around. There is no reason only poor people should be infected.”

First reported on social networking site Twitter, Facebook’s Senior Platform Manager Dave Morin blogged, “Bill Gates just released mosquitos into the audience at TED.”

Gates then waited a minute or so before assuring the audience the freed insects were malaria-free.

The unusual presentation on malaria prevention was confirmed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s media office. A spokesman said the insects released were not carrying malaria.

Wow. Bill Gates opened a jar of mosquitoes and set them free in a room full of people, but it’s okay, folks, because the mosquitoes did not carry malaria. Now can someone tell us which circuit in his brain stopped functioning to make him think it was okay to subject a crowd of unsuspecting people to a swarm of mosquitoes, malaria-infected or not?

2 Responses to “Bill Gates Releases a Swarm of Mosquitoes on Conference Crowd”

  1. Janice J says:

    Very creative, Bill. Wish I had thought of it!!

  2. Lee Lorenzen says:

    There is a great book entitled “Say It In Six” by Ron Hoff in which he says that the key to a great speech is to make it short (i.e., under six minutes) and to make sure you’ve got IT (the Idea in Tangible form). He gives examples of Ideas in Tangible forms in speeches like, Ross Perot’s charts, Reagan’s 4 pounds of budget plans dropped on the lectern (or his Berlin Wall, or Point du Hoc Normandy speeches) and Lincoln’s Gettysburg address (a 3 minute 269 word masterpiece) woven around the Idea made Tangible of a new nation born four score and seven years ago requiring a “New Birth of Freedom.”

    It is in that context that I believe Bill Gates’ speech with the mosquitoes will be remembered. It seems weird that people would fear a few mosquitoes in an auditorium. The reality is that they have a higher chance of being bitten by a mosquito walking out into the Long Beach, CA night than they do from Bill’s “swarm” and these Long Beach mosquitoes aren’t guaranteed to be malaria-free.

    Nice work Bill on getting tons more coverage for your key cause by makeing your Idea Tangible.

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  2. Daughter of the Ring of Fire » Blog Archive » The Meaning of Bill Gates’ Mosquitoes - [...] to learn more about my writing.I chuckled when I first heard about Bill Gates releasing mosquitoes into the crowd…

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