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Online Etiquette


Videoconference and Teleconference Etiquette

Many of us are new to the practice of meeting and collaborating remotely. Here are a few pointers we can all use to help remote meetings run smoothly and pleasantly for everyone.

  • Mute your microphone when you are not speaking, to avoid generating sonic feedback and echo effects.
  • Ensure that your technology works correctly. Test the equipment setup before the meeting starts, ideally by quickly meeting with a colleague to assure you can see and hear each other well.
  • State your name before you start talking, (especially if your are not visible to the others in the meeting), e.g., "Hi, this is Sue, and I just wanted to say..."
  • Avoid causing any extraneous noises (e.g., by shuffling paper, tapping your pencil, etc.) while you are speaking. These sounds are much more distracting when transmitted into a teleconference than they would be in person.
  • Look into the camera, especially when you are talking. It's tempting to look at yourself onscreen, but you will make a much beter impression if you focus your eyes on your computer's camera.
  • Frame yourself correctly in the camera, so that you are centered in the frame and the angle is level with your face.
  • Make sure your room is presentable and that there is nothing in your video frame that you would not want others to see. If you are using Zoom to teleconference, you can choose a digitally generated background to appear behind you, hiding your room with the image of an attractive location.
  • Have the right lighting. Nothing is more unflattering than an overlit or underlit video image.
  • Pay attention. It's easy to let your concentration drift when you are not in the same room as the others, but you may end up wasting time and embarrassing yourself if you lose track of what is being said.