Welcome to MW Online conference! We are excited that you have decided to join us! We want to ensure that this event is as welcoming, accessible, and easy to navigate as possible.
Outlined below are details regarding the digital platforms we are using, how to use them, and call out where they might fall short, so you are ready to make the most of each tool, supporting our community as we come together in a whole new way. Being a community of technologists, we’ve also added a couple of optional tools to play with that we thought were interesting in our thorough analysis of the many ways people are now connecting online around the world.
If you haven’t yet registered for MW21, please visit our registration and membership page. Once register for your annual membership, you will have an access to online conference. You’ll receive a confirmation email with instructions on how to get set up for the conference.
- A computer with an internet connection (wired connection recommended)
- USB plug-in headset with a microphone (recommended for optimal audio quality)
- Webcam (optional): built-in or USB plug-in
- Zoom application – installed before the conference.
You will receive the conference packet a few days before the conference starts on April 5. The email will explain how to join the conference and how you will receive the zoom links to each session. You do not need to have a paid zoom account to join the session as a participant.
How To Zoom!
Zoom is a program that runs on your computer, phone, or tablet. You must download this program from the Zoom website. The free version of Zoom should meet all of your needs.
If you’ve received an email invitation to a Zoom meeting, click the link that says, “Join Zoom Meeting.” If this is the first time you’ve used Zoom, this link will take you to a website where you can download the Zoom program or app, depending on what device you’re using.
On an iPhone or iPad: Go to the Apple App Store and search for “ZOOM Cloud Meetings.” Click “Get” to download and install the Zoom app.
The Zoom app in the App Store
On an Android phone or tablet: Go to the Google Play App Store and search for “Zoom Cloud Meetings.” Click “Install.”
On a computer: On the Download Center website (https://zoom.us/download), click “Download” in the “Zoom Client for Meetings” section.
Click the blue Download button to download Zoom from the website https://zoom.us/download.
After Zoom is downloaded, you must install it onto your computer.
If you have an Apple computer, like a MacBook: Double-click the file called Zoom.pkg, which is typically saved to your Downloads folder. The installer program opens and guides you through the process.
If you have a PC: Double-click the file called ZoomInstaller.exe file to install the program.
Double-click ZoomInstaller.exe to install Zoom on your PC.
During the Conference: The Sessions
We are running the entire conference on Zoom because we have determined that it is the most inclusive option available to ensure everyone can participate. We recommend you prepare by creating an account if you don’t already have one, and pre-installing Zoom’s desktop application for a higher-quality experience. If you’re new to Zoom, they have excellent documentation and video tutorials to get you up to speed.
If you’ve created a Zoom account, we recommend signing in ahead of the conference to select and save your desktop settings—profile, video, audio, displays, accessibility, etc. for a better experience. Zoom can accommodate different bandwidths, but if you want to be certain you’re welcome to check out Zoom’s recommended system settings.
- Video: If you would like to have an on-screen presence during Meeting style sessions, this is where you control your video feed and other visual controls for meetings.
- Audio: This is where you select which microphone to use. We recommend using a headset with a mic, but at the least headphones to avoid those spooky sound feedback issues.
- Share Screen: Make sure “Scale to fit shared content to Zoom window” is selected so that slides are not cut off on your screen.
- Chat: This section allows you to customize the zoom chat settings to your preference.
- Virtual Background: If you are concerned about your background, use a virtual background to disguise your location. We’ll share MW backgrounds you can use.
- Profile: This is where you set your profile image and first and last name. Both will be visible to all attendees. You can also change your profile name during a Zoom session by clicking on the Participants button at the bottom of the screen, hovering over the list of attendees, and clicking the Rename button next to your current profile name.
- Keyboard Shortcuts: A useful list of shortcuts to act like a pro when you use Zoom.
- Accessibility: Control the scale of closed captions, chat display size, and whether you want meeting controls to be present always.
- Follow the link on the session’s MW Sched page, available 10 minutes before the session start time, links will also be sent via the email 10 minutes before the session start time. Do not post or share these links, you will compromise the security of the conference. Waiting Room: When entering a session, you will encounter a screen with the text “Please wait, the meeting host will let you in soon.” Or “Please wait. The webinar will begin soon.” The host has to approve each person before they can enter the live session.
During the Session
- When you first enter a meeting, your mic will be muted.
- Mute yourself when you are not speaking
- Use Q&A to pose questions to presenters
- Use chat to discuss session content with fellow attendees and facilitators
- Break out rooms will be used in some sessions like Workshops and Social Events. They allow the participants to meet in isolated smaller groups.
- If you are having a technical issue during a session reach out to tech support in the SpatialChat CoffeeHouse (https://spatial.chat/s/museweb).
- All live sessions will be recorded, except for those following Chatham House rules, and will be made available to attendees following the conference via Sched.
NOTE: The 30 minute Q&A sessions are in response to a pre-recorded session that we recommend watching before joining Q&A. The video will be available in advance via the corresponding session. They will be made available on Sched at least one day before each Q&A session for you to watch them at your convenience, on-demand.
Remember that recorded sessions (except for Chatham House Rules) will capture your profile info, how your name is displayed, chat information, and your profile picture or video feed and microphone feed if you used it. If you are concerned about privacy, consider the name you use, the profile pic you select, and whether or not you want to use a virtual background if participating with video turned on. After the conference, you can delete your Zoom account through your Zoom account settings by following these instructions. Your IP address connecting to the meetings and webinars will not be deleted when you delete your account—more on privacy and safety below.
We chose to use Zoom specifically for its accessibility features. These are documented on their website.
Live Automatic Transcription
Otter.ai provides automatic live transcription with a powerful AI and impressive speed. While we know that CART captioning is still superior as there are chances of misinterpretation in automated transcription, we agreed that the quality of this transcription service was the best we have seen and we wanted to be able to caption as much as possible. To turn on Captions, press the CC button in the menu controls at the bottom of the Zoom window when you are in a meeting.
If you find the delay of captions populating to be too slow, try viewing the real-time transcription on the Otter website. You can access this by clicking on “LIVE on Custom Live Streaming Service” in presentation sessions.
Or on Meeting events, like Workshops, Paper Sessions, and some of the big events it appears as “LIVE on Otter.ai Live Notes” in the upper left of the Zoom window:
When you select “View Stream on Otter.ai Live Notes” a separate browser window will open taking you to a live transcription feed. You will be asked to create an account, but you do not need to, simply close the modal that pops up to view the transcript stream.
We will share recordings and transcripts after the conference with all attendees, so no need to request access, we will not be sharing access on Otter during the conference. These links are just for viewing during the conference.
There is also a lot you can do to support a more inclusive experience as a presenter and attendee, check out the accessibility page capturing all of the details about accessibility and the conference.
How to Use Sched
The Program (Sched)
If you haven’t yet registered, do that first. If you already registered but didn’t get an email from Sched, please check your spam or junk mail box first. If you still do not see the mail from Sched, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Update Your Profile
Networking is the main reason we attend the conference, so we strongly encourage you to complete your profile to let others know about you. Also, with your name, people will be able to find you in SpatialChat.
Build Your Schedule
Add the sessions you are planning to attend to build your personal guide to the conference and access Zoom links to attend sessions. Some sessions have limited attendance such as Virtual Tours and Workshops. If you want to add a Workshop listed in Sched, you need to register for that workshop and pay HERE. For all other sessions, you’ll need to add the session to your schedule on MW Sched to join the attendee list (or, if it’s full, the waitlist) and gain access to the Zoom link.
***Note that Workshops are reserved by purchasing a ticket at the MW registration page first.
Access your Sessions via Sched
Links to access your sessions will be available 10 minutes before start times on that session’s page in Sched once you’ve added it to your schedule. For those signed up for pre-recorded sessions with live Q&A, the YouTube links to view pre-recording will be made available on that session’s page in Sched at least one day before the live Q&A session.
You will also receive an email 10 minutes before the session. Please do not forward or share the Zoom link with anyone. Sharing the link can cause serious privacy and security issue. We are counting on you to keep our space safe and welcoming.
We ask NOT to share Zoom links on Twitter, Slack, FaceBook, or other public web site. Sharing or posting this link compromises the security of the conference. If malicious activity occurs (e.g. zoom bombing) the session will be shut down immediately. As we have a very packed schedule this year, we will not repeat the session if the session is shut down due to malicious activity.
There are ten different types of sessions plus various forms of virtual tours, and all sessions are either a zoom webinar or a meeting. MW session types are listed on a separate page.
- Webinars are events with only presenters on-screen, and you’ll participate using the Zoom chat and Q&A to pose questions; your camera and mic are not engaged, but your username is viewable.
- Meetings are events where you can join on-screen and participate beyond the chat function using video and audio functionality. You can read more about the distinction between Webinars and Meetings on Zoom.
We have summarized the accessibility spot check on the accessibility page. We are doing our best to make MW resources and conference experiences more accessible and are always open to ideas. Please contact email@example.com if you have specific requests, concerns, ideas, or experiences to share around accessibility either before or after the conference.
MW conference organizers will have access to the information you upload to your profile. We use this data strictly for managing the conference experience. You can control your settings to determine what is visible to the rest of the community and check out the Sched instructions to adjust your settings.
Sched will have access to any files, content, and information shared when you sign up for an account. They also acquire information from any device you use when logged into the platform, as they identify: “such as the dates and times of your visit to our website, IP addresses, the types of browser, operating systems and languages you use… and your location.” All that said, they have instructions online to request your data and delete your data.
How to Make Connections in SpatialChat!
We are offering a daily virtual coffee break room in SpatialChat. This is an internet-based networking space where attendees can move freely between groups of people to quickly change dialogue. Each person is represented by a circle with your face via webcam (the camera is not necessary.) You can find other participants in the circles as well. The room is password protected. You will find the password in the conference package that you will receive 3 days prior to the conference.
How to Use Padlet: “Inspirational Graffiti Wall”
Our on-going MW Inspirational Graffiti Wall (link TBA) is a community project hosted on the Padlet Software. Currently, Padlet is in the process of testing for WCAG 2.1 level AA compliance. Padlet is compatible with screen reader software (such as Apple VoiceOver), but they are working on becoming even more accessible as they tailor content to screen readers. You can navigate the login page and the dashboard using only your keyboard. Padlets can be viewed, but settings cannot be changed just yet. For now, Padlet does not offer low vision color contrast, but they do recommend you download a web extension such as High Contrast for Chrome to increase contrast on Padlet pages.
For more information about accessibility and Padlet, please follow this link: https://padlet.com/about/accessibility
Many thanks to MCN for sharing some of their experiences with us as we adapt new technology and ways of presenting our content.