Platforms and procedures I use for video sessions, and how they address online privacy:
Please note that Zoom servers are located globally, which includes the EU, UK, US, and Canada, so our call may connect through a server outside of Ontario and/or Canada. However, since our sessions are live-streamed, no data about the content of our sessions will be stored, only that the meeting happened. If you decide to set up your own Zoom account independent of our sessions, I highly recommend always logging in using your email vs. through your Facebook account as Facebook typically is pretty dodgy when it comes to online privacy.
Preparing for virtual sessions
For us to connect for our virtual sessions, you will need access to a device that has a webcam, microphone, and speakers, as well as access to high-speed internet. This device can be a smartphone, tablet, or computer. I also highly recommend using headphones with a mic to improve sound quality and increase privacy.
Once you have found the device you plan to use, you need to find a quiet, private place so you can have as few distractions as possible. If you are home with other family members or roommates, I recommend trying to find a room in the house where you can close the door and possibly turn on some music or a white noise machine/app if you are concerned others could overhear our time together. If you have access to a car, this can sometimes be a solution to a lack of privacy at home, if this is a concern for you.
Accessing our Zoom session
Prior to our session time, I will send you an email with the link to our upcoming call that will look like this. For example:
Tara Field is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.
Topic: Tara Field’s Zoom Meeting
Time: XXX PM America/Toronto
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: xxx xxx xxx
Meeting ID: xxx xxx xxx
Find your local number: https://us04web.zoom.us/u/xxxxxxx
Click on the “Join Zoom Meeting” link and follow the prompts. If this is your first time accessing a Zoom meeting, it will likely take about 30 seconds to 2 minutes to set up on your end. If you have already accessed Zoom via your device, it should pop you directly into our meeting.
When you click on the Zoom link, you will likely have something like this pop up to ask if you would like to open the application. Click the “open zoom.us” button.
You will then see a box open that looks like this:
If you are planning on using the audio from your computer or tablet, click the “Join Audio Conference by Computer” button and follow the prompts.
If you would like to use your phone for the audio connection, click on the “phone call” tab at the top and you will see the following:
You can then call in on your phone while using your computer for the webcam. Once on the call, you will need to turn on your web camera. To do this on a computer, look to the lower left-hand corner of your screen, and you will see a button that says “start video” with a video camera and a line through it. When you click on that button, your video camera should turn on.
Otherwise, virtual sessions are not much different than in-person meetings, they just take a little getting used to.