General, Research, Technology

How online parties are changing our lives. Personal experience

There will be no introduction about what is in the worldcoronavirus is raging - there is not a single person who reads this post and does not know about it. It is very good if you sit at home and I hope the majority of these. I understand that everyone cannot sit at home due to different circumstances, but I will tell you about myself and my circle of friends: probably 95% of the people I talk to are sitting on self-isolation. Perhaps I can only remember two who do not observe the home regime, but their work does not allow them to be at home. And although we are allowed to go to the store or pharmacy - this is clearly not enough. People need people. So we are arranged. And here I for the first time in my life was imbued with video calls and parties through ZOOM. I have not received such a positive experience from entertainment for a very long time. But first things first.

I even liked hanging out in this format.

I self-isolated with my family in the second halfMartha. The first time was, in general, normal. During the flu or a cold, we often spent a week at home, but here you are healthy and do not even really understand the consequences of what is happening. During the second week, the realization began to come that all this was for a very long time and a little fear appeared for the future. They introduced a vacation for everyone and told them to stay at home. However, judging by the Yandex metric, no one was going to sit in four walls. Yes, and the weather was clear with us, and everyone poured out onto the street. Then the conditions were tightened, and all that could be closed was closed. It began to come to many that it was better not to risk our lives and the lives of others and still sit at home.

Starting from the third week, I began to miss people. Not necessarily close, but in general by people. I’ve never thought about this before,because there have never been such situations. In everyday life, we constantly communicate with someone, even if we don’t really want to. Taxi drivers, hairdressers, sellers, work colleagues, neighbors, etc. And apparently for our lives we get used to it so much that when we lose such communication, we begin to feel at ease. But I can’t go out, go to the gym or cafe - everything is closed. And at that moment a strange thing began to happen.

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At first I began to call up relatives andclose by video, although before doing this only by necessity to show something. Messages or voice communications have always been enough for me. But now there was some kind of internal need for communication in such a way as to see the interlocutor. But if only I had called, it would have been possible to write off some internal troubles. But they began to call me too. And also by video. I then noted this fact for myself and it seemed to me nothing more than just funny.

In my life, it looks something like this. Sorry for the quality, did not plan to write a post while sitting

But a little more time passed and we began toevenings to have online parties. ZOOM was perfect for this. It is convenient, not demanding on the channel and generally made wisely. Although it was originally developed for working conferences and it has a lot of interesting functions (screen sharing, presentations, sharing videos, etc.), it turned out that it is perfect for gatherings with friends. You can choose a mode when you see all the participants on the screen (in the case of a smartphone, 4 on the screen), or a mode in which only the speaker is visible. You have to turn on the second mode when there are too many participants, but I don’t really like it. It is interesting to look at everyone at once, to see their reaction, what they are doing, how they drink tea and are distracted by household chores. Our gatherings with friends then dragged on quite a bit, but we simply did not want to disperse.

I am a member of one private chat inA telegram (it is paid and is dedicated to our separate project “Psychological unloading”) where more than 150 participants from around the world. Basically, these are adults and adequate people who communicate on absolutely any topics that interest them. We all already learned each other quite well, but only by avatars and country of residence. When someone writes, I remember to myself “this is Kostya, he lives in Cyprus” or “this is Misha, he is from Spain”, etc. The geography is very different, but the language of communication is Russian for everyone. And as an experiment, I created an open conference in ZOOM and threw the link into the chat.

Of course, in addition to ZOOM, analogues can also be used. Most popular is Skypebut over the years spent together I have disgust for him. Apple has good group video chats Facetimebut there is a platform restriction. There is no entry for Android phones. There are other options, but this is my story ...

You know, the result exceeded all my expectations. We sat for more than 4 hours and we were stopped only by the fact that in my time it was the third hour of the night. It was nice and interesting to see completely unfamiliar faces and then, starting to talk, to understand who it was from the chat. On that day, people connected from Canada, Cyprus, Estonia, Spain and other countries. Someone actively participated in the conversation, someone sat quietly and just was "in a party". Some even wrote "guys, I won’t say anything, can I just sit, watch and listen to your conversations?" For me it was something new and amazing. During the conference, periodically, someone left, someone came, someone drank beer or smoked cigarettes. People went about their daily business and were together.

And then I thought, but if not forcoronavirus, maybe I would never know about this format of group communication. More precisely, I knew and know that there is such a thing and it is practiced, but it was never widespread and I myself never participated in it. And now I realized that even when our life goes back on track, I will be happy to spend time with those who are far from us or even with strangers, by and large, people. It turned out to be new, interesting and ... real. If you haven’t spent your evenings on ZOOM and are in dire need of communication - it's time to start. After all, how much more the whole world will sit at home - no one knows, and you need not to go crazy today.

Share your stories online gatherings in our Telegram channel or in the comments. Maybe your ideas will find inspiration from other readers of the site?