BBC: New Zealand council’s Zoom talks go viral as pretend meeting

BBC: New Zealand council’s Zoom talks go viral as pretend meeting . “A New Zealand council’s Zoom meeting has been viewed more than 290,000 times on YouTube as people use it to pretend to take part and avoid being disturbed. The meeting of the Waipa District Council’s finance and corporate committee was recorded during a Covid-19 lockdown period in April last year. Since then, users have been playing it at home and at their workplaces to create the impression they are busy.”

NewsWise: Cameras, not meetings, cause Zoom fatigue

NewsWise: Cameras, not meetings, cause Zoom fatigue. “In the post-pandemic world, a few things have become ubiquitous: masks, hand sanitizer and Zoom fatigue, or the feeling of being worn out after a long day of virtual meetings. But new research from a team led by University of Georgia psychologist Kristen Shockley suggests that it’s not the meetings causing the fatigue—it’s the camera.”

CNET: Zoom is adding live translation services, more hybrid work features

CNET: Zoom is adding live translation services, more hybrid work features. “Upgrades include live, multilanguage transcription and translation for Zoom calls. The platform will use machine learning and natural language processing to first transcribe the spoken language, and then each participant will be able to translate it to their own language, Zoom executives said during a press call. A beta will be available this month, and the feature should be generally available by the end of the year. The list of languages is not yet final, there will be 30 transcription and 12 translation options by the end of 2022, they added.”

Mashable: Book clubs should always meet on Zoom

Mashable: Book clubs should always meet on Zoom. “I read a lot, and I love the low pressure engagement of a virtual book club. I was bad at attending book clubs in real life before the pandemic, because my book club friends and I all have very busy schedules, so finding a time for us all to meet up was difficult. Scheduling online hangouts is easier because you can do them from anywhere — at your family’s house, with your partner, or even from your own bed. Now that the meetups are returning to apartments and bars, scheduling is once again more difficult and, honestly, I don’t want to participate in them anymore.”

MakeUseOf: How to Use Zoom Video Filters

MakeUseOf: How to Use Zoom Video Filters. “Zoom has become a popular pick for video conferencing. It may be for meetings, webinars, classes, or even catching up with friends. However, if we’re honest, facing a screen full of poker-faced people can be pretty boring if not their still photos or their names. In this article, we guide you on how to use built-in and third-party Zoom filters that you can show off at your next Zoom meeting.”

CNET: Record and transcribe your Zoom meetings with this new tool, here’s how

CNET: Record and transcribe your Zoom meetings with this new tool, here’s how. “Zoom calls are a part of daily life for many professionals and as companies examine hybrid workplace models, that’s not likely to change anytime soon. A new tool from note-taking app Otter.ai aims to help you keep track of what happens during your Zoom meetings by automatically recording and transcribing notes so you don’t have to.”

Ubergizmo: Free Alternatives to Zoom That Are Privacy-Friendly

Ubergizmo: Free Alternatives to Zoom That Are Privacy-Friendly. “Zoom emerged as a popular video conferencing tool amidst the pandemic. It is still a decent choice to go with even with all the privacy and security concerns revolving around it. However, there are potentially better options to Zoom that are also free-to-use, and you might want to consider them for a better user experience and privacy. In this article, I’m going to mention the best free alternatives to Zoom.”

TechCrunch: Dan Siroker’s new startup Scribe automates Zoom note-taking

TechCrunch: Dan Siroker’s new startup Scribe automates Zoom note-taking. “Scribe appears in the meeting as an additional participant, recording video and audio while creating a real-time transcript. During or after the meeting, users can edit the transcript, watch or listen to the associated moment in the recording and highlight important points. From a technological perspective, none of this feels like a huge breakthrough, but I was impressed by the seamlessness of the experience — just by adding an additional participant, I had a full recording and searchable transcript of our conversation that I could consult later, including while I was writing this story.”

Route Fifty: Four Causes of ‘Zoom Fatigue’ and What You Can Do About It

Route Fifty: Four Causes of ‘Zoom Fatigue’ and What You Can Do About It. “In the first peer-reviewed article that systematically deconstructs Zoom fatigue from a psychological perspective, Jeremy Bailenson, communications professor and founding director of the Virtual Human Interaction Lab (VHIL) at Stanford University, took the medium apart and assessed Zoom on its individual technical aspects. The paper appears in Technology, Mind and Behavior.”

Poynter: Remote teaching has meant lots more improvising — even for improv professors

Poynter: Remote teaching has meant lots more improvising — even for improv professors. “Whether through formal training or simply a dawning awareness, many instructors say they are thinking more deeply about learning and student centeredness. As students increasingly express concerns about their own mental and emotional health during 2020’s pandemic, economic downturn and racial reckoning, instructors are finding new ways to be flexible. They are grappling with how to balance their expanded role — teacher, mentor, friend — with conveying content, and where to draw the lines among these roles.”

Scientific American: The COVID Zoom Boom Is Reshaping Sign Language

Scientific American: The COVID Zoom Boom Is Reshaping Sign Language. “People who use American Sign Language (ASL) to communicate are no strangers to video chatting. The technology—which has been around since 1927, when AT&T experimented with the first rudimentary videophones—allows deaf people to converse with signs over the airwaves. But after the coronavirus pandemic began confining people to their homes early last year, the use of platforms such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams and Google Meet exploded. This increased reliance on videoconferencing has inevitably transformed the way deaf people communicate.”