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Backup plan and preventive measures

There are many things that are out of your control during real time online event: connectivity issues, equipment issues, speakers loosing sound, etc. Many times this results with the interruption of the event as to deal with the issue. Make sure you have your tech support team on board with you, hand out materials to all participants and facilitators ahead of the event, and back-up all relevant materials. You also might want to consider pre-recording speaker presentations.


What if...?

Backup plan

...the platform used has major disruptions?

Have an alternative platform ready on standby.

...a speaker or participant temporarily loses image and/or sound?

Make sure to have tech support who can assist the person in a private chat or via phone if the issue persists.

...a participant has bad audio reception due to connectivity or other issues?

Having the facilitator summarise other participants’ interventions can help here. This also contributes to making sure that the messages are conveyed clearly.

If the bandwidth is the problem, advise using audio only and turning off the video.

Tech support can also contact and support the participant with instructions related to audio settings. If a phone dial-in option is available, this can also be offered. Always test before the beginning of the session.

...a key person loses connectivity?

It’s good practice to remind all of the key persons (including your team) to prepare chargers, have mobile internet activated, and send backup presentations to you in advance.

It is always useful to have an alternative communication channel with them, e.g. Signal, Wire, Telegram or some other instant messaging service, and even a phone number.

If the key person is one of your facilitators,  also plan to have the other facilitator/backup role on standby.

Always test before the beginning of the session.

...a participant disrupts the event or violates the principles of participation?

Have your tech support on standby for these issues (chat block options, removal from the session, etc.). Always have clear policies and protocols on violation of the principles of participation.

...the material cannot load?

Make sure to run a rehearsal prior to the event. As a second option, and if you can view the material on your local device, you can also share your screen.


When it comes to sharing videos, be aware that some participants might not be able to watch due to digital “rights” control, but if you host and run local videos, that would solve the intellectual property control issue.

...the turnout of participants is low?

To prevent this, make sure to send out your invitations in advance. Go back to our section “Outreach: How to share your event”.

If it happens on the day of your event, run your session with additional activities ready beforehand.

...the turnout of participants is unexpectedly high?

Consider cutting some of the activities. Another option is to communicate with your participants about the time frame and agree on additional time.