Mike Lindell’s three-day “cyber symposium” got off to what Dakota News described as a “bumpy start” yesterday, in Sioux Falls. But what is the meaning of the event’s name? In other words, what makes a cyber symposium a cyber symposium?

What is the meaning of ‘cyber symposium’?

A symposium is simply a conference or meeting to discuss a particular subject.

Merriam-Webster defines it variously as a “formal meeting at which several specialists deliver short addresses on a topic”, a “collection of opinions on a subject”, and simply a “discussion”.

It traces its origins back to Ancient Greece, where symposios took place after a meal. 

cyber symposium meaning
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Symposion is a derivative of sympinein, “to drink together”. After a banquet, attendees would dance, recital poetry, listen to or play music, and/or converse while drinking.

So, although modern use of the term typically denotes academic conferencing, symposia were originally about pleasure – with an emphasis on the free exchange of ideas. The equivalent term in Roman society is the Latin convivium.

What about the ‘cyber’ part?

Cyber-, meanwhile, as a prefix denotes anything involving, using, or relating to computers, and especially the internet. 

For example, “cybercrime” is any crime or illegal activity that is performed using the internet.

A “cyber symposium”, therefore, suggests one of two things: an event facilitating the free exchange of ideas, using the internet as a medium, for example using Zoom or similar software; or one facilitating the free exchange of ideas with “cyber” as the theme.

cyber symposium meaning

What is the specific meaning of Mike Lindell’s cyber symposium?

Mike Lindell’s original promise, regarding the meaning of his proposed “cyber symposium”, was that it would contribute towards reinstating former president Donald Trump, and “change history” in the meantime.

He also, according to Salon, promised that it would be bigger than Elvis’ 1973 Hawaii concert.

cyber symposium meaning
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“This is going to change the world. It’s gonna change it, you know, it’s gonna show everything and that this election was taken,” Newsweek quotes Lindell as saying.

Given that early reports of Lindell’s cyber symposium show him speaking into a microphone in front of a panel of speakers, it appears that his event leans more towards the second definition above – a conference about cyber-things, rather than a cyber-conference about things.

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