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Zoom... Zoom... Zoom!

Sat Nam! Well, this is a month like no other before. With all our staff confined to home, SikhNet has been live broadcasting on Facebook every day at 11 am and 6 pm. We’ve been using ZOOM for meetings as well as loving check-in calls. It’s the best free video conferencing software out there. Once upon a time, Skype was the bomb.

Now that the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic has us all confined indoors and working from home, "Skype," "Skyping," and "Skyped" are oddly absent from the discussion. Instead, Zooming is now all the rage.

So, what happened to Skype? How did it fumble the digital ball so badly that we're now Zooming and not Skyping? It soon became clear why Skype has fallen by the wayside and Zoom is, well, zooming, with three areas standing out above the rest. First and foremost, Zoom is much easier to use than Skype. And I don't mean me here, I mean all the regular non-nerds like your grandma who don't find this so easy. The muggles. Non-technical people.

And Zoom really is easy to use, so much so that  everyone at SikhNet is using it now. I've gotten all sorts of people to use it with very little friction. People whose ideal app would have only have one button, and that button would be pre-pressed. 😊 Well, Zoom is about as close to that as you can get, and yet has powerful features under the hood for those who understand how to wield such power.

Downloading Zoom is super easy, installing it is painless, and getting people into a meeting is as simple as sending them a link. It really doesn't get much easier than Zoom.

I have one caveat. Because of Zoom's sudden popularity (even the British cabinet is meeting on Zoom!) When you're done reading this article, please read this one as well: How to Stop Trolls From Taking Over Your Zoom Call which explains how to tweak Zoom's default settings to prevent Zoombombing (uninvited people entering your meeting.)

The free version cuts off after 40 minutes, but you can start a new Zoom after that or pay for Zoom and have an unlimited number of meetings up to 24 hours long. Oh, yes, you can automatically record your video calls if you wish.  What a great little tool for our times: