Trials & Errors: Livestream and Recording

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    Trials and Errors: Livestreaming and recording


    When I took over the DC/Virginia Tableau User Group I wasn’t really sure what the expect.  To my surprise the demand for meetings was more than I expected.  The first meeting sold out so fast I wondered what I had gotten myself into!  The amount of users on the waitlist were more than I would have room for at almost any host’s location.  It was then that I realized I needed to find a way to livestream my events and/or record them.  This is a compilation of tips and tricks I’ve learned in my first year as a Tableau User Group Leader.


    1. Internet - if you want to live stream you have to make sure you are going to have fast reliable internet at your meeting location.  Virtual users get really frustrated when the stream loses connection and they miss that one tip that they were on the edge of their seat for!  Additionally, if the host does not have guest internet available I request that the presenters at least get it.  I carry around a hotspot with me as a backup.
    2. Web service - after some trials with Google Hangouts on air and Zoom I have really taken to Zoom.  Zoom meetings can be setup for you by Jordan, and prior to the  meeting she can transfer host privileges to you.  You can use zoom to record the event and live stream if you choose.  Remember that if you’re using Zoom you will still need reliable internet!
    3. Audio - the ideal audio situation is a phone (called into the Zoom meeting) placed by the speaker/in a central location.  Additionally, when you’re using phone you don’t have to worry about the audio cutting out because of bad internet. 

    Since a phone isn’t always possible Zoom allows each user to use their computer microphones.  When using computer microphones be aware that microphones are not created equal!  One presenter’s computer maybe come through loud and clear where another’s is barely audible.  In certain situations it might make sense to do all of the audio through your own computer if you’re near the speaker.

    1. Video - I don’t usually do webcam video because a lot of the presenters don’t stand in front of their computers while presenting anyways.  Instead I just have the presenters share their screen when it’s their turn to present.  One note here is that depending on how the computer/projector is setup when they share their screen in the Zoom meeting it will show the “presenter view” from their slideshow.  To account for this you can set your display to “mirror” or share the desktop that the presentation is being displayed on.
    2. No/unreliable internet - I haven’t actually encountered a situation where I didn’t at least try to use the internet, but I would imagine in this case I would ask all of the presenters to present from my computer that way I can use a screen recorder to record the meeting.
    3. Uploading - Last I upload the recorded meeting to YouTube.


    Recording is a great opportunity to expand your user group audience.  You can send the video to users that couldn’t make the meeting, other user groups, or post on social media.