BlueJeans Conferencing Service Information
One of the biggest hurdles for members wanting to participate in sections and committees hasn’t been desire to get involved, but actually getting to the meetings. Commuting to and from a meeting location can eat up precious office hours, creating a barrier for many members who would otherwise participate. To help alleviate these issues, the OBA provides a new service called BlueJeans. With BlueJeans, members can join a meeting from anywhere, moderate a meeting from anywhere and even share documents to everyone across all platforms, just like a face-to-face meeting. Because some members still prefer meeting face-to-face, meetings can also be hybrid with some members using BlueJeans to join their colleagues at the bar center remotely.
How It Works
You can use BlueJeans either through an app on your mobile device, your computer or by dialing in (for voice-only conferencing). Once logged in, video feeds of meeting participants are displayed in a Brady Bunch-style arrangement. In the event of more people participating remotely than will fit on one screen, the BlueJeans platform will display the video feed from those speaking and switch the display as necessary. To attend a meeting remotely, participants simply log into the meeting with the ID code provided in their meeting notice email. Participants can join even before the moderator has joined, meaning your meetings can begin even if a few members are running late. Every participant who is engaged visually will be able to see others and receive any documents shared during the meeting. If a meeting is taking place at the bar center, every meeting room is equipped and ready to facilitate a hybrid BlueJeans meeting.
What You Need to Join In
BlueJeans works with smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktop computers. Although it can work with voice-only phones, it is best used with a device with a camera and microphone to avoid those phone conference problems mentioned earlier.
Smartphones and Tablets
For smartphones and tablets, just download the free BlueJeans app by searching "bluejeans" in your app store. This is the easiest way to use the service. The section or committee meeting notice will have the ID code you’ll need to join the meeting. The app will utilize your mobile device’s camera and microphone so you can be part of the conversation. (Be sure to give the app permission to use these features the first time you open it.) There is no extra equipment needed and joining is quick and simple.Testing your connection in advance is recommended. To do so in the mobile app, tap the question mark at the lower right of the screen and select “Join Test Call.”
Laptops and Desktops
To join the meeting with a computer, go to www.bluejeans.com/downloads and install the free computer app. Once installed, you’ll need to go to the link provided in the meeting notice and use the meeting ID code also included to join. Most laptops are equipped with a camera and microphone. Like other video chat programs, BlueJeans can use this built-in hardware. If you plan to use a desktop computer or your laptop doesn’t have a working camera, external microphone and camera options are available. Like the mobile app, you should test your connection in advance. To do so, use the meeting code 111.
Although it is not recommended, BlueJeans also supports traditional phone conferencing. To join through a land line or desk phone, simply call the number provided with your meeting notice and provide the meeting ID code.
What if I don’t want to be seen? Some participants are camera shy but there’s no need to be. Remember, if you were physically present, wouldn’t they see you anyway? If you need to temporarily turn off your camera, BlueJeans provides a button to temporarily disable the camera until you decide to resume. The same for audio, you can mute your audio while you aren’t speaking to the group. (You can also mute yourself to avoid accidental disruptions from background noise on your end.)
What does a moderator do? A moderator’s job is simple. They have very few controls, most notably the ability to mute or disconnect a participant if necessary. Moderators don’t have to be a section or committee chairperson. They can be anyone designated by the chair or group. A moderator can also moderate remotely, so if a meeting is taking place at the bar center, a moderator does not have to be physically present.
How does my group get started using this? To set up a meeting, email Debra Jenkins at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 405-416-7042. She will set up your meeting and send the meeting ID code with instructions when she sends your meeting notice. If you meet during regular business hours, OBA staff can assist with any questions you have. If you meet after hours or on weekends, BlueJeans tech support is available.