January 1, 2019

Online Meeting Resources

Alternate and Virtual Meetings

DISCLAIMER:  In the spirit of Tradition 6, a CoDA group ought never endorse, finance, or lend the CoDA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, and, as such, does not endorse and is not affiliated with any of the above-mentioned providers.  These are merely suggestions.

Now Zoom has come to the rescue with a blog post titled How to Keep Uninvited Guests Out of Your Zoom Meeting“. 

“When you share your meeting link on social media or other public forums, that makes your event extremely public,” the posting reminds users. “ANYONE with the link can join your meeting.”

So here are some things you can do if you’re a Zoom meeting host. 

Stop other participants from screen sharing

Click the arrow next to “Share Screen” in the host controls at the bottom of the Zoom screen, then select “Advanced Sharing Options” and make sure the option to “Who Can Share?” is set to “Host-Only”.

Control who enters a meeting with the Waiting Room feature

This puts all participants in a waiting area before the meeting starts, and you can admit them one by one, or all at once. You can enable it by going to Account Management > Account Settings > Meeting > Waiting Room. More Waiting Room Information is available at Zoom.

Lock the meeting after it starts

This is harsh to latecomers, but it keeps out some gate-crashers. Click  “Manage Participants” at the bottom of the Host screen and select “Lock Meeting.”

Turn off File Transfer

This will stop jerks from uploading porn through the in-meeting text-chat function. Go to Account Management > Account Settings > Meeting > File Transfer.

The Zoom blog posting has many more tips, including a few that are for paid Zoom accounts only, such as making the meeting invitation-only and requiring attendees to log in with a password.

Note to Meeting Hosts:  If you find that a participant is being inappropriate or disruptive to your meeting in any way, you may remove them by clicking the ellipses on their profile icon and click “remove”.  You can then choose to lock your meeting or enable the waiting room so that they will not be able to get back in.

  • IMPORTANT – Please ensure to mute your microphone or phone when entering the call and when not speaking to cut down on background noise.  Lag time makes group responses difficult to do in unison.  It is better to stay muted when not speaking.
  • All virtual meetings (to be recognized by CoDA Canada and CoDA Inc.) must read the 4 foundational documents:  The Preamble, The Welcome, The Twelve Steps and The Twelve Traditions.
  • Meetings follow The Twelve Traditions and maintain safety for all attendees.
  • Online Meeting/Conference call etiquette will be determined by individual group conscience.
  • Please review the No Crosstalk Guideline before participating in a Virtual Meeting.
  • You can participate on your computer or phone in using the numbers listed, however, please note that some meetings may decide to lock the meeting at a certain time (ex.15-20 minutes into the meeting) in order to avoid Zoom-bombers. If this is the case you will not be able to join the meeting once it has been locked.
  • Please enter into the conference service or call 5-10 minutes before the meeting start time.
  • Using a headset with a microphone is recommended to cut down on background noise but not required.
  • To strengthen your connection, turn off all other internet applications on whatever device you are using when participating.
  • Zoom has a “Raise Hand” feature to support sharing.  You can also send a private chat to the host to share, however, to reduce “crosstalk” the host can disable the chat feature during the meeting.  Take a group conscience.
  • Join the meeting early or stay on after the meeting for Fellowship!

Tradition 4
Each group should remain autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or CoDA as a whole.

Tradition 12
Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions; ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.

  • The decision to be on visually or audio alone is a personal choice to be determined by each individual participating in the meeting. For some, face-to-face on screen may be similar to showing up physically at a meeting.  
  • To maintain personal anonymity, it is suggested that each participant identify themselves using their first name and last initial in the name field on their virtual meeting profile icon.
  • To maintain privacy, you may wish to use a “Virtual Background” in your video setting.  For instance, if you are using Zoom, the following link will provide a tutorial for setting up a Virtual Background: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/210707503-Virtual-Background

Tradition 7
Every CoDA group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions. 

Whether a “Face to Face” meeting or a “Virtual Meeting”, Co-Dependents Anonymous meetings have no dues or fees. Meetings are self-supporting through voluntary contributions. As such, participants in virtual meetings could donate to CoDA by considering one of the following options:

  • E-transfer money to the Homegroup Treasurer or GSR to be added to the groups’ funds.
  • Set some money aside each week that you would normally contribute at the face-to-face meeting and donate it to the group when meetings resume.
  • Make a donation directly to CoDA Canada by clicking HERE.