I’m one of the organizers. Here’s what you need to know:
Due to a certain pandemic, some things for WordCamp San Antonio 2020 will be different (and some will be the same) this year. The biggest change is that we have the pleasure [and challenge] to be the FIRST 100% virtual WordCamp! Not only that – we’re doing it LIVE and for FREE.
And let me tell you, pivoting from in-person to virtual in just 2.5 weeks is nothing short of a miracle. (BIG shout out to all my fellow organizers, volunteers, WordCamp Central, and our sponsors. You all rock!)
- Register for WordCamp San Antonio already!
- Test Links
- Install Zoom package
- Get Comfortable
- Be Patient (it’s our first time!)
- Follow the Code of Conduct
- Optional – Use Chrome, Create Crowdcast + Zoom accounts
How are you going do it?
We’ll be using Crowdcast.io and Zoom.us to deliver the virtual video goodness. Sessions will be in Crowdcast and we will have ‘hallways’ in-between on Zoom you can move to in order to continue the convo.
Do I need to do anything special?
Not really. The biggest prep I’d do is to test all the links we’re sending you today and tomorrow and make sure you can use Zoom.
Now Zoom likes to install a package, so make sure to do that the night before so you don’t walk into the hallway sessions late. (If you’ve never used Zoom before, the Zoom Client for Meetings download will pop up, requesting an install. It’s legit. You can do it the day before and /or choose from their other options here.)
PROTIP: phones are not your friend for something this long; use a computer when possible.
If you’ve really never used Zoom before, here is a handy cheatsheet of the controls, divided up based on your device.
Settings. I highly recommend making sure your setting are set to “mute” and “video off” upon entering a meeting. Actually, I believe our setup will force this. DO NOT PANIC if you can’t see or hear yourself, just use the cheatsheet link above to un-mute + show what you want (more on camera stuffs below).
Then tomorrow, bring your patience hat (bc 1st time usually = glitches), a favorite beverage, hole up in a cozy corner, and get ready to learn, laugh, commiserate, and fall in love with WordPress all over again!
They are both browser-based and both state they work best on Chrome (I only use Chrome for dev testing, but hey, when in Rome…).
I have a Mac and use it to speak with potential clients so I have + use the Zoom app. You can see other options on their download page.
No app for Crowdcast.
Creating accounts are not required, but doing so will allow you to customize your profile and experience. (It’s free to create an account.)
Your face won’t be live in this one – just an image in the registered and chat areas.
Crowdcast will pull in the gravatar image associated with the email you registered with.
The gravatar image is a bit grainy, which works fine in the chat, but not so much if you are a profile stalker like me. ? So I added one (it’s the same as my gravatar but higher res; I shouldn’t have to remind you but I’m a mom and a moderator who’s been instructed to allowing banning for inappropriate conduct + content, so – make sure to keep it G/PG!)
You can also throw in a cover photo. I chose one I took last year of San Antonio’s Japanese Tea Gardens. (because it was pretty and it’s kind of a hidden gem that even some locals don’t know about.)
Finally, Crowdcast allows you to add a short bio and your location. I used my organizer bio – short and easily skim-able, but with some conversations starters.
I’m pretty sure your face WILL be live in this one. Your options are:
- no camera + no image added = black box with name
- no camera + yes profile image or virtual background = you can leave the camera off and instead upload an image of your [spiffed up] fine self to either your profile or, if you have the app, the virtual background.
- yes camera / video = live feed of your fine self
With all the options, it might be hard to pick. Since I’m also moderating, I frankly won’t have much time for the hallway but I’ll be live with my camera rolling when I am.
PROTIP for virtual events: solid background is best; use a headset with headphones + mic if you have them; use at least headphones if you don’t so your voice isn’t competing.)
What’s the Same?
The code of conduct still applies. We are an inclusive, family-friendly WordCamp. Be nice and follow the golden rule.
We are a homegrown, local event.
Our Speakers ❤️ your questions – ask away!
We can’t WAIT to share our knowledge and friendship with you.
Y’all are welcome here! (even though I’m a Michigander by birth, I just had to bring on the drawl. ?)
Parts of this article was used with permission by WordCamp San Antonio.