Yesterday, I participated in my first Google Hangout. For those who don’t know, Hangouts is a free video chat feature of the Google+ world. It lets you “hangout” either one-on-one or with up to ten people for a true “face-to-face-to-face” experience. A Google Hangout allows users to interact with one another over video chat while using all the other aspects of Google+ in unison. As a group while hanging out, you can access your Google Drive and Documents, share items and even watch the same YouTube videos together. Other apps available to a Hangout include Google Effects, which lets you use sound effects and funny costumes for a hangout with friends; Slideshare is available for perhaps a more professional setting. As a group, you can all choose to launch Aces Hangout, which calls itself “the king of online poker.” Google Hangout also uses a feature of technology that enlarges the screen of the person who is currently chatting, making the efficiency and focus of the Hangout easier for each user. A live chat is also available in case someone is having audio trouble or just wants to send some text to the group.
My Google Hangout yesterday included almost all of the above. My “Social Media U Need 2 Know” professor at Syracuse University, Dr. William Ward, spent an hour with our Instructor’s Assistant and my three other group mates. We covered an array of subjects including Google Hangout etiquette, a short game of online poker, and some funky headgear and sound effects. We also went over our current project on “Crisis Management Using Social Media” by sharing our Google Drive document with the Hangout (this took a while but we eventually figured it out).
Overall, for my first Google Hangout experience, I’d say it was a positive one. I got to hear advice and suggestions from my professor while at the same time, hearing feedback from my classmates. Thank goodness for technology today, as one of my group members was traveling back from the NCAA Final Four in Atlanta and STILL managed to join the Hangout over the course of her 15 hour drive.
“Once a Syracuse Orange, always a Syracuse Orange.”