Guide to Hosting and Attending Our Events on Zoom

Table of Contents


Anything you say or do in a Zoom meeting – from video to audio to the chat – could be recorded without your consent by another attendee. Those recordings can then be shared with third parties who weren’t in the original meeting. This is a violation of our code of conduct and we will remind all attendees to refrain from this behavior, which we consider harassing.

We record workshops and classes from time to time. You will be informed of this prior to the event start.

To prevent "Zoom bombing" we use waiting rooms and password protection on all event meetings hosted on Zoom. Should an event be targeted, our protocol is to end the meeting immediately, and start a new one. A link and password will be emailed to all attendees right away.

Event Team

In addition to the host/presenter, each event has a designated captain.

The captain's role is to start, configure, and monitor the entire event from start to finish – ensuring all protocols for safety and security are followed, and setting the stage for a smooth and disruption-free event for all participants.

Depending on the number of attendees, events may also have an additional DMG volunteer to assist with responding to any issues such as disruptions and technical/logistical questions.

For Hosts

Before the event, establish:

  • Will attendees be participating or just observing/listening?
  • Can participants/attendees share their own screen and control their audio and video sharing?
  • How and when are questions asked and answered?

The captain should start the meeting 10-15 minutes before the scheduled start time to allow time for the volunteer, presenter and key participants to connect and ensure everything is configured correctly. Participants will be able to join as soon as the meeting has started; if the meeting isn't configured to use a Waiting Room, you can either put early participants On Hold or simply accept their presence and let them know that you'll be starting soon.

The captain or volunteer (co-host), should review the following settings before the event starts:

  • Mute attendees. Click "Manage Participants" at the bottom of the Zoom window, and click "Mute All" near the bottom of the Participants window. You can uncheck "Allow Participants to Unmute Themselves" if you do not want participants to be able to interject – this should be determined in advance of the meeting and is dependent on the format.
  • Review screen-sharing options. Click the arrow next to the "Share" button at the bottom of the main Zoom window to open the "Advanced Sharing Options..." pop-up and review the settings for "Who can share?" and "Who can start sharing when someone else is sharing?" Most of the time, this should be set to "Only Host" – exceptions are multi-presenter panels and socials.
  • Review chat settings. Depending on the event, you may want to restrict the chat window to "Host Only" and ask that attendees chat in Slack instead.

Once the event begins, the captain should set the expectations for the group, including:

  • Community guidelines – post a link to our code of conduct in the Chat window
  • Describe the format of the event and what features are enabled/disabled and why
  • Set out any ground rules and expectations for participation particular to the format of the event

The captain should remain in the meeting for the entirety of the event and should not be performing other roles, including facilitation, presentation or active participation. This allows them to focus on watching for and addressing safety, security and technical issues that may disrupt the event.

The captain should keep their main Zoom window as large as possible, set to Gallery view. The current speaker's thumbnail image is outlined in a yellow border.

Keep the Participants window open to ensure you can see who has joined the meeting. Microphone and video icons show who is muted and unmuted.

Additionally, if Chat is enabled, keep the Zoom Group Chat window open and visible throughout the event and monitor for any inappropriate content or respond to questions or requests from participants, presenters and other safety team members.

Finally, if using the Waiting Room feautre, keep an eye on participants waiting to join, and approve them individually or en masse.

For Attendees


Please arrive a few minutes in advance of the start time so that we can start on time. Some sessions have a waiting room – you'll be granted access momentarily.


All events will start with all attendees set to mute to keep ambient sound down as the host begins the event. Depending on the format of the event, you may be able to unmute yourself to speak or ask a question at any time.


You can join any event with your video turned off, or turn it off at any time during the event.


We encourage attendees to set their display name to the name you'd ask someone to call you at an in-person event, and to add your pronouns if you wish. Our policy is to default to gender neutral pronouns in case we don't know yours.


Please join the Slack channel for the event for ongoing conversation, and feel free to use the built-in chat in the meeting tool for questions and introductions during the event.

Breakout Rooms

Some events will split up large groups for smaller conversations. The host will assign you to a room automatically and bring everyone back together once the breakout portion is done. The host will let everyone know the format of the breakout, but generally, do not feel obligated to chat with others in your group. Take it as a moment for a bio break if you need to!

Accessibility needs

We want to create a fully accessible space online for all of our community members. If you require captioning, sign-language interpretation, or another accommodation, please contact us a week before your class or event. We hope to eventually be able to offer captioning by default at all of our online workshops.

Last revised: April 22, 2020