Hosting a Zoom event? Learn how to guard from the goonies!

It’s been amazing to see people improvise in so many ways in our new world. For example, moving meetings online with tools like Zoom. I’ve attended a bunch, I’ve hosted a few – and I’m leading a webinar on How to Use Zoom on April 8. (It’s going to be a great chance to kick the wheels, speak or share your screen if you haven’t been active on Zoom yet!)

Unfortunately some of the proverbial bad guys have also found a way to wreak havoc in online meetings. I have heard of several meetings that have been cancelled or cut short due to trolls – or what I’ve heard called Zoom Bombers – jumping in being chaotic, disruptive, inappropriate and hateful. Luckily Zoom has a few recommendation to keep the baddies at bay…

  • with the email they were invited through, they will receive this message:

This is useful if you want to control your guest list and invite only those you want at your event — other students at your school or colleagues, for example.

  • Lock the meeting:It’s always smart to lock your front door, even when you’re inside the house. When you lock a Zoom Meeting that’s already started, no new participants can join, even if they have the meeting ID and password (if you have required one). In the meeting, click Participants at the bottom of your Zoom window. In the Participants pop-up, click the button that says Lock Meeting.
  • Set up your own two-factor authentication:You don’t have to share the actual meeting link! Generate a random Meeting ID when scheduling your event and require a password to join. Then you can share that Meeting ID on Twitter but only send the password to join via DM.
  • Remove unwanted or disruptive participants:From that Participants menu, you can mouse over a participant’s name, and several options will appear, including Remove. Click that to kick someone out of the meeting.
  • Allow removed participants to rejoin:When you do remove someone, they can’t rejoin the meeting. But you can toggle your settings to allow removed participants to rejoin, in case you boot the wrong person.
  • Put ‘em on hold:You can put everyone else on hold, and the attendees’ video and audio connections will be disabled momentarily. Click on someone’s video thumbnail and select Start Attendee On Hold to activate this feature. Click Take Off Hold in the Participants list when you’re ready to have them back.
  • Disable video:Hosts can turn someone’s video off. This will allow hosts to block unwanted, distracting, or inappropriate gestures on video or for that time your friend’s inside pocket is the star of the show.
  • Mute participants:Hosts can mute/unmute individual participants or all of them at once. Hosts can block unwanted, distracting, or inappropriate noise from other participants. You can also enable Mute Upon Entry in your settings to keep the clamor at bay in large meetings.
  • Turn off file transfer:In-meeting file transfer allows people to share files through the in-meeting chat. Toggle this off to keep the chat from getting bombarded with unsolicited pics, GIFs, memes, and other content.
  • Turn off annotation:You and your attendees can doodle and mark up content together using annotations during screen share. You can disable the annotation feature in your Zoom settings to prevent people from writing all over the screens.
  • Disable private chat:Zoom has in-meeting chat for everyone or participants can message each other privately. Restrict participants’ ability to chat amongst one another while your event is going on and cut back on distractions. This is really to prevent anyone from getting unwanted messages during the meeting.
This entry was posted in Conferences, Digital Divide and tagged by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (blandinonbroadband.org), hosts a radio show on MN music (mostlyminnesota.com), supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota (elimstrongtowershelters.org) and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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