I have to be honest: I'm not totally sold on the idea of live streaming content from an on-site conference to the web. I get the appeal. It allows more people to consume the content, especially if they are unable to attend the event in person. But when I participate remotely, it often leaves me with a #wishyouwerehere feeling or reminds me of my 'outsider' status (cuz I can't really engage with anyone in real time, especially the presenters.)
However, that didn't stop us (the events team) from wanting to live stream all five keynotes from InstructureCon 2018. Why? Cuz we do things differently 'round here.
Not An Afterthought
A live stream too easily becomes a default experience. The sentiment at some point during the planning sounds something like this: "We're already recording the session; why not just stream the video feed online for those who can't attend?" And not much thought is given to the viewing audience beyond that. For the average clown, a typical live stream is probably fine. But InstructureCarn is not for the average clown.
If our collective years of online teaching have taught us anything, it’s that learning doesn't happen by just uploading course content to an LMS. The same philosophy should also apply to the world of events. Good times aren’t guaranteed from just one video feed, either. You should always attempt to create personalized and engaging experiences, whether you're an online teacher or a virtual event planner.
In other words, YOU were not an afterthought.
Juggling Multiple Modalities
The best part of remote viewing is knowing you can be anywhere on the planet (where there’s internet, obvi). Knowing people might be watching from all types of devices and locations, we have configured the tent for multiple viewing modalities. The virtual big top is HTML5 friendly—no plugins required (yes, cuz we know how frustrating that is, too). Just make sure your speaker volume is up and the wifi is strong.
- Log in from any laptop (or desktop). This is a very traditional, webinar-style way to consume these acts (but, hey, we don’t judge).
- Log in from your phone or tablet. We made sure everything was mobile-friendly and responsive on any device! (Let’s just say the performers won’t be the only ones unusually flexible at these events.)
Want to make this experience even more intense? Host a viewing party! (Yes, you have our permission to turn your school's auditorium into your own big top.)
Step Right Up
We plan to open the doors to 'virtual big top' one hour before each keynote to give you time to acclimate to the environment (and change seats in case your neighbor smells funny). Much like an online class, we understand the time it takes to settle in (even if being at a carnival is a bit unsettling).
Once you arrive... well, we can't disclose anything beyond that at this time. Come early for the pre-show. Sit back. But, don't relax. (And be sure to check out all the other cool things you can do remotely around for this conference!)
See you under the big top!
The Virtual Events Team