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No One is Purr-fect. And That’s OK.


No One is Purr-fect. And That’s OK.

  • 2/22/2021
  • Technical skills, Trend-spotting, New tech, Digital, Workplace tools

Chris Anderson

Is it just me or does anyone else want to see what they look like as a kitten after watching the “I’m not a cat” Zoom fail? Don’t get me wrong. I’m not “feline” the need to show up with (visible) whiskers on my next video call, I’m just curious about whether I could if I wanted to.

So I turn to my pal, Google. “Hey Google how do I turn into a kitten on zoom?” Not surprisingly, Google has some ideas. Kittengate after all was widely enjoyed. I click on a Washington Post article which illustrates a couple of different ways for me to adopt a little cat-tidude. I opt to download the desktop app Snap Camera.

Ok…I try to download Snap Camera. Turns out my 7 year old Mac doesn’t support a fun filtered life. Rats.

So, I turn to my pal Brenna, aka daughter #2. “Hey Brenna, can you turn me into a kitten on your computer?” After a lifetime with me, she’s not fazed by the question. She downloads the app and moments later, I’m a cat, I’m “the” cat. A photoshoot happens, obviously (see above).

While it’s fun to dabble in the filtered possibilities, I’m certain a kitty face, cute as it is, is not a look I’d choose to adopt on my next video call. Clearly, it wasn’t a look the lawyer-who-is-not-a-cat wanted to wear during his meeting with his peers. But, as they say, litter happens.

Video call struggles are a reality for us all. We lose connection, we’re interrupted by kids, partners, pets and, too often, we forget to unmute. Yes, these unexpected occasions can stop the flow of a meeting but is that really so bad? I don’t think so. In fact, I think they are a reminder, as we wade through the sea of work from home technology, that we are more than talking heads on a screen. Our lives are bigger than an hour spent staring at each other (who am I kidding…staring at our self) and plowing through an agenda. Hey, guess what? We’re human! We can’t always control the narrative and that’s ok.

I think our mutual fallibility connects us far better than any tech enabled device. It triggers our compassion, engages our empathy and, on occasion, allows us to laugh. And, though, I’m not advocating for a Zoom fail strategy, I think we should give ourselves a break when things don’t go as planned. It’s a great opportunity for us and others to learn from our mistakes (case in point: I now know how to install and, importantly, uninstall a cat filter) and then carry on, ready to Zoom another day.

Looking for ways to up your Zoom game, here are a few links:

How to use Zoom: 15 video chat tips and tricks to try today (c|net, 12/20)

7 Zoom mistakes you might still be making — and how to raise your video skills (IDEAS.TED 2/21)

The best tips for using Zoom (Digital Trends, 2/21)

And in case you missed it, a video call filter fail that has hilarious baked in:

This Woman Accidentally Turned Herself Into A Potato For A Video Meeting And Couldn’t Figure Out How To Fix It

This post was originally published on Feb 22, 2021 on Medium.

Chris Anderson is the Marketing and Communications Director for Zoom fails include screen sharing with 20+ open tabs and forgetting to teeth check post Everything bagel breakfast.

Expanding the work horizon for women 45+



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