Geert Lovink on Fri, 3 Jul 2020 22:09:07 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> discussing zoom fatigue

Dear nettimers,

I suppose many of you who’re into teaching have had an intense and exhausting period of giving online classes.

I am trying to gather experiences of what’s now called ‘Zoom fatigue’. Of course this is by no means limited to Zoom and extends to Microsofts Teams and Skype, Google Classrooms etc. The experience also shows up in the cultural sector, in businesses and in the busy everyday or freelancers that have to speak to clients. We all made long hours.

My question is a strategic one. Should we, in the near future, refuse to give online classes and have management meetings like this? The IT management class is already promoting the ‘blended’ model, expecting a backlash of the excessive video conferencing hours of the past months.

Do you want to send me (or post here) some sentences or paragraph how, exactly, you experienced the move to video conferencing and the fatigue?

Is there something wrong with the user interface? Is the ‘live’ aspect important or should we rather return to pre-produced videos? As you all know, the relation (or tension) between ‘streaming’ and ‘online video’ is an old one.

Some of us also made remarkably positive experiences. When the people, the content and context is right, an online conference that matters turned out really interesting. There are so many things to discuss, new connections to be made, hearing from those who have been excluded from the dialogues and discourses so far. The ‘stack of crises’ may be distressing but the resistance, worldwide, also grows. Under what circumstances it is desirable to come together like this?

This much is clear. We need to gather and organize, mobilize. How should ‘our’ Zoom look like? One that is inspiring, very likely limited in time, more focussed dialogues, perhaps even voting, facilitating both consensus AND debate?

Is there a top limit to the use of video as community tool? 

Best, Geert

ps. Here at the Institute of Network Cultures we made some experiences ourselves with the MoneyLab #8 event, organized by Aksioma in Ljubljana, originally scheduled for late March 2020, that was quickly turned into an 8 part lecture series:

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