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Thread: Successful Zoom meetings with mixed audience?

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Successful Zoom meetings with mixed audience?

    Tell me about your successful Zoom meetings that had an audience of both in person and virtual attendance.

    I asked because my neighborhood association tried having community meetings with a Zoom element sometime ago, and it didn’t really work because the in person comments scattered throughout the room were never captured on Zoom.


    We have a plant society regional meeting coming up which is the first time they’ve ever tried a combination Zoom and in-person meeting, and I really really hope that it works. I will attend via Zoom, But I wonder how those participating virtually will be able to see and hear the content of the meeting.

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    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    My Dungeons & Dragons group has sometimes had to do hybrid Zoom/in-person sessions over the past few years.

    It was rough at first, but we developed a setup with multiple cameras in the in-person game-room, pointed at some of the players and the maps and such. The "each person has a turn" nature of the game seems to let us have remote and local participants without the remote folks getting stepped on as much.

    When my HOA has tried hybrid sessions the past two years, it has been a disaster for the remote folks - they simply weren't able to participate nearly as effectively. Part of this is due to poor meeting management/control.

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Thank you. Our meeting is going to be like your HOA meeting so I’m not sure that it will go well.

    Setting up multiple cameras with the dungeon and that dragons group is interesting.


    I think people who haven’t experienced the hybrid meeting or thought it through really don’t understand the challenges of it. Our incoming president of this group is pretty savvy so I’m hoping he’s already thought through some technical issues. Later in the meeting we have a presentation via speaker, so that’s a little bit easier to manage because speaker will have the zoom camera on him and if they require interactive questions to be repeated by the speaker, that part will work well.

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    Senior Member bae's Avatar
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    Yes, the key in mixed meetings is careful control of crosstalk, having one acknowledged speaker at a time who has access to a microphone, and being orderly in transitions. Having someone other than the moderator tasked with noticing "hands up" and chat comments from the remote participants seems quite helpful.

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    Senior Member KayLR's Avatar
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    This is the recommendation from my hobby group's national tech guru (excerpt)"
    Here’s what you will need for a basic hybrid meeting setup:
    - A good Wi-fi connection - While Zoom may be used with most internet speeds, a faster Wi-Fi connection will give your participants smoother audiovisual experience.
    - A Laptop Computer or Device with a webcam - This will be used by the moderator of the Zoom meeting.
    - A phone or tablet with camera - This will be pointed at the group in person to show those in Zoom who else is in the meeting. A small tripod would be very useful to hold your device and point it in the right direction.
    - Speakers - A basic set of speakers connected to the main computer will provide better audio of the meeting to those in the room. *All other devices in the meeting, including the device capturing the meeting, need to be muted.
    - Omni-directional speaker - This type of speaker is recommended since it allows those in Zoom to hear what is being said in the room.
    - Projector - A projector connected to the Laptop Computer will allow the participants in the room to see the Zoom meeting without needing their own device.
    - Participant’s devices - If a projector is not available, participants in the room will need to join the call from their own device in order to see those in the Zoom meeting.
    - Document camera – This is also a great tool, especially when teaching or showcasing embroidery during a meeting.
    My therapist told me the way to achieve true inner peace is to finish what I start. So far today, I have finished two bags of M&Ms and a chocolate cake. I feel better already!

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    Senior Member KayLR's Avatar
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    More thoughts:

    The moderator of the Zoom meeting will need to make sure the speakers and projector are properly connected and will start the meeting from the computer.
    - The phone or tablet with camera will need to be placed in a central area, showing as many of the in-room participants as possible. Join the Zoom meeting with this device and mute the microphone.
    - If others in the room are joining on their device, they need to be muted in Zoom and their device must also be muted. They will listen to the Zoom participants through the meeting speakers.
    My therapist told me the way to achieve true inner peace is to finish what I start. So far today, I have finished two bags of M&Ms and a chocolate cake. I feel better already!

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KayLR View Post
    More thoughts:

    The moderator of the Zoom meeting will need to make sure the speakers and projector are properly connected and will start the meeting from the computer.
    - The phone or tablet with camera will need to be placed in a central area, showing as many of the in-room participants as possible. Join the Zoom meeting with this device and mute the microphone.
    - If others in the room are joining on their device, they need to be muted in Zoom and their device must also be muted. They will listen to the Zoom participants through the meeting speakers.
    Wow, thanks Kay! I don’t know what half of those tech devices are. That confirms what I thought, that in order to have an effective mixed meeting, we need somebody in our neighborhood to volunteer to be the tech guy. We had more than one person complain because it seemed to be “so easy” to set up the zooming meetings that are also open to in-person attendance, but I knew they didn’t understand the problems that came with it.

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    Senior Member Yppej's Avatar
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    I have seen hybrid City meetings. In person participants are required to speak into a microphone so their comments are heard.

    The problem is with the remote people. They can't figure out how to do things like unmute themselves.

    All in person is better.

  9. #9
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yppej View Post
    I have seen hybrid City meetings. In person participants are required to speak into a microphone so their comments are heard.

    The problem is with the remote people. They can't figure out how to do things like unmute themselves.

    All in person is better.
    No it isn’t “better” because remote access opens up greater participation. But as bae and Kay point out, there are protocols that must be followed to have an effective participatory meeting.

    Remote meeting technology allows never-before-participation for attendees at National meetings.

    I attended a Zoom Board meeting of the American Iris.society just to see what goes on.

    A requirement for Board membership for these plant societies used to be ability to travel across the country to meet in person for the fall board meeting. They all seem to have a fall board meeting. I am guessing that fall meeting may be moved to Zooming for these plant societies.

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    Yes, I think zoom has made a huge difference. I've not been to any mixed meetings, but did attend on mixed exercise class...but no body talks there and our computers are muted so we only hear the instructor.

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