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Host's Guide | Participant's Guide

Diocesan Zoom Hosts:

The diocese has a number of Zoom hosts for use by parishes.  Please contact Cheryl to schedule a meeting.  

Video-teleconferencing (VTC) applications

  • Zoom
    • The diocese has lots of time to share with parishes on their host accounts.
    • Allows people to also call in, but numbers are Canada long distance toll numbers.
    • Offers a free basic plan though meeting time is limited to 40 minutes.
  • WebEx
    • Offers a free basic plan, meetings are not limited.
    • Telephone calling includes a Fredericton number (NB long distance outside the city).

Zoom instructions for sharing with invitees

  • If you have a computer or smartphone, click on the link that starts with https. 
    • If you have not used it before, Zoom will want to download the application on your computer or phone - this is fine.
    • You may be asked if you want to turn on your video, and which mic to use - answer as appropriate.
    • You should see microphone and video camera icons that you can then click to mute or unmute alternately.
    • If you do not have a camera others will not see you but you will see those who do.
  • If you do NOT have a computer or your device does not have a microphone, please (also) use the telephone to call in using one of these numbers - it does not matter which; however, they are all Canada long distance toll numbers
    • +1 587 328 1099 
    • +1 647 374 4685
    • +1 647 558 0588
    • +1 778 907 2071
    • +1 438 809 7799
    • You will be prompted to enter the Meeting ID - the nine - eleven digit number provided, followed by #, and perhaps also a provided passcode.
    • If the meeting has not already started just wait for others; you may be instructed to press # to wait.
    • The following commands can be used
      • *6 - Toggle mute/unmute yourself
      • *9 - Raise your hand 

Video-teleconferencing best practices

VTC systems are designed to have one person speaking at once.  This works well for meetings, as long as normal meeting interaction best practices are followed, but not so well for communal worship.

The following are general best practices:

  • Have a clear leader of the call.
  • Depending on the size of or reason for the meeting, have another person act as the call "host" to manage muting and any uninvited attendees (see more on 'bombing' below).
  • Request that all attendees stay muted unless they are called on to speak.  Holding down the Space bar provides temporary unmuting.
  • Use screen sharing to display documents under discussion.
  • Consider using breakout rooms to manage larger meetings - the call 'host' can split people into separate sessions and then reintegrate into one meeting.

In addition, you might consider the following for communal worship:

  • Use presentation software, such as MS Powerpoint, and screen sharing to display the liturgy (lots of templates are available from the Bishop's office), song text or a focal image.
  • Have defined worship leader(s) and, depending on the context, a single responder (or responding couple who on the same computer).
    • Provide direction, including as a footer on any presentation document, who will be leading the various parts, responding, etc.
    • Enforce muting of other participants' computers, while encouraging them to speak out/sing in their own space.
  • If you are playing music off your computer, start the music and then mute yourself.
  • Follow copyright rules with respect to texts and downloaded music.


Avoiding video-teleconferencing (VTC) 'bombing'

More details on what this is in this CBC article.

Recommendations for avoiding this are:
  • Keep VTC meetings private by issuing users a password/passcode - but see note on sharing the link. 
  • Employ the "waiting room" function, which requires the host to invite each guest individually.  This will not work for those using the diocesan hosts as you need to get into the meeting before you can claim the host function. 
  • Don't share invitation links on websites or social media.  Any password/code set on the meeting will be included in the meeting link.  You may publish the meeting id and then ask invitees to contact you privately for the password/code.
  • For worship events that you want to publicize more broadly, consider assigning the host function to someone other than the worship leader, so that person can keep an idea on attendees and muting.  
  • Keep software updated to stay on top of any security patches provided by VTC companies.

Articles with Tips for Video-Teleconferencing

And, Some Humour