Live communication draws attention to the stage show or exhibit. A considerable part of the emotions, however, is deeply rooted in the experience of one's own interaction with the others in the room. The other, that can be the performer on stage as well as the other participant. The teambits toolbox for interactive participant participation is therefore much more important in hybrid and virtual events than in face-to-face events. How do you create the special experience of personal encounters, when you don't meet each other in person anymore? Is it because #Coronavirus and #Covid-19 forces everyone to stay at home? All planners are now confronted with many questions. Conceptually and above all technically.
Smaller things can be done as web conferences. Starting at about 50 participants, video live streaming is a likely option. In both cases, the live feeling stands and falls with the opportunities for interaction offered to the participant. Web conference solutions usually offer a chat. Live streaming usually comes without a return channel. teambits provides the decisive design tools for both variants.
Web conferencing works more for small audiences. Everybody knows meetings via Skype, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, WebEx, Adobe Connect, vitero and many others. The glass ceiling is the maximum possible number of participants. For the staging, it has to be clarified whether the participants should be able to see the other participants bidirectionally and, in some cases, hear them. This is because web conferences become bi-directional difficult if there are more than 10 participants.
Video and Livestreaming
Even before Corona there were a few events without an audience. For example, in the pharmaceutical sector or in corporate events of highly decentralized companies, which are aimed at their managers or staff in the respective locations. The location now only serves as a studio. The stage events are rather classical: key notes, lectures, talks or panel discussions. The audience is somewhere in the world. On location, you usually need two cameras, a mobile picture control room and a streaming unit that encodes the video signal and sends it to a streaming server. The participant receives a link to the player to watch the stream.
Web conferences and live streaming can also be combined to a limited extent. The obvious problem with web conferences is the picture and sound quality. Therefore, the camera technology and the picture direction are of particular importance. The video control room merges the video signal of the slide presentation with the available camera images in order to provide the viewer with dynamics. Alternatively, it is possible to show the slide presentation in the player parallel to the streamed image of the speaker. More about this later.
The challenge of both virtual and hybrid events is to keep the remotely connected audience on the line. If you're sitting on location at a live event, you can't get away that easily. When bored, the participant looks forward to the break or has a whispered conversation with the man or woman next to him. Great networking, but dangerous when it comes to droplet infection. With virtual events, on the other hand, the attention of the audience must be constantly regained. As with television, the participant can switch between the two. This is one reason why the phenomenon of "online moderation" has been around since the advent of online conferences in the early 2000s.