When you approach people with a new idea, some will be amazed. Others won’t get it. The Wright brothers are credited for creating the first functional airplane, but when people heard of their idea, they weren’t ready to believe.
The French called the Wright brothers bluffers while the European press was turned into a anti-Wright brothers stance. To add on, Ernest Archdeacon, founder of Aero Club de France, was publicly scornful of the Wright brother’s efforts to actually take flight in the airplane.
The Wright brothers could have given up right there. The New York Herald basically said that the Wright brothers either took flight or completely lied. With the European press, the French, and Ernest Archdeacon objecting the idea with plenty of other critics as well, why didn’t the Wright brothers give up? The answer is an easy one to give. They got it.
The European press, the French, Ernest Archdeacon, and all of the other critics didn’t get it. They only actually got it when the Wright brothers took flight in their first airplane in France. Archdeacon publicly admitted later that he had done the Wright brothers injustice.
Now, airplanes are common. I’ve boarded an airplane multiple times, and I’m sure you have boarded an airplane yourself or at least know someone who already has. Now that the airplane has been around for a long time, we all get it. We all know that flight is actually possible because we have the proof. We look up in the sky, and sometimes we see an airplane.
The European press, the French, Ernest Archdeacon, and all of the other critics didn’t have the proof they needed and thus didn’t get it. More people want proof and fewer people are faithful that something will ‘just work.’ If you went back to the beginning of the 20th century and told someone about all of the airplanes that fly in the air today, people would look at you as if you lost your mind.
The whole point isn’t about airplanes, or the European press, or all of those other critics. The point is that right now, if you come up with a new idea, you will have some of those critics. The airplane started out as an idea that people criticized. People probably criticized Facebook and Twitter before they became the powerful social networks they are today (some people still criticize those social networks).
When you think of a new idea, few people will actually get it right away. Most people won’t get it no matter how good the idea is. When people don’t get your idea, that is not the time to give up. That is the time to prove everyone wrong.