Meet Me At The Zoom: How People Host Online Parties

A life 2023
Meet Me At The Zoom: How People Host Online Parties
Meet Me At The Zoom: How People Host Online Parties

Video: Meet Me At The Zoom: How People Host Online Parties

Video: Meet Me At The Zoom: How People Host Online Parties
Video: Using Co-hosts in a Zoom Meeting 2023, March

Quarantine has forced many people adjust to the new rhythm of life: work from home, stop visiting loved ones and generally go out. Many familiar activities have already been transferred online: study, training, and even excursions to museums and walks around the cities of the world. Enthusiasts are setting up online bars where strangers can spend evenings together and have massive raves with dancing and other entertainment. It does not do without chamber parties only for their own. We talked to different people about how they meet friends online and bring strangers together in one zoom meeting.

Interview: Anna Eliseeva


Varvara Lyubovnaya and Artyom Aivazov

art director and PR manager

For a long time we did not get involved in such a format of communication, as there was something to do: we would quarantine outside the city and there are a lot of household chores here. Unless they sometimes called up with their parents via video link. But on the sixteenth day of quarantine and illness (we had pneumonia), when we seemed to be on the mend, we decided to dress up and put on makeup, and then wrote on Facebook that we were hungry for communication.

Friends invited us to chat in the zoom, where we drank in pairs and had fun talking for three hours. Friends were twisting that hard times had come and it was not clear how fun it was to celebrate a birthday, despite the distance. The idea for a video link party was born, in which everyone present had to change gender roles, come up with outfits and new names.

The birthday girl created a chat - all potential guests were invited there, told about the date and time, as well as the conditions of the party. Most of the participants greeted the idea with enthusiasm, but there were also those who did not get the idea. Apologizing, they left the chat with the words: “I passed. Makeup and all that - I can't, not mine. Even for fun. " As a result, about sixteen people (nine windows) gathered on the appointed day, and everyone celebrated their birthday in unison. The owners even arranged a quiz with guessing and singing songs together. We took some place and won a bottle of homemade tincture, but it is not known when we will be able to get it.

It's a pretty fun format. And it seems that we began to see friends more often. I would like, of course, to hug and meet live, but if not for this format of meetings, then everyone would probably be moldy with boredom. The main difference between these is that everyone needs to speak strictly in turn in order to adequately support the conversation. In addition, you have a conversation with everyone at once - not like it happens at an offline get-together, when everyone scatters in small groups, periodically clinking glasses in honor of the event. On the other hand, it is convenient that you do not need to set the table, cook a lot and clean up after all. Everyone comes (or rather, does not even go anywhere) with their own alcohol and snacks. You can leave whenever you want, to be distracted by household chores.

We are planning more online parties. I would like to meet with colleagues, otherwise working communication is reduced to comments under tasks and conference calls. We have already hung out with friends several times, shared news and impressions. In one case, we decided to combine two meetings into one - the invitees knew each other, we talked with six of us, which was much more fun than when four people talk. At one of the parties, Artyom, however, went too far with alcohol and went off the air, falling under the table and falling asleep there. Having slept for an hour, I returned as if nothing had happened, which caused considerable surprise and fun on the other side of the screen.

Sasha Afonskaya



The idea of parties lay on the surface: when not only you, but all your acquaintances are locked at home without the opportunity to communicate in person, you have to look for alternative options. We have a lot of friends, we meet different companies for a drink, discuss the latest news. Mostly crowded calls (seven to eight people) happen with a company of best friends who live in different cities. It's amazing and really cool that distance doesn't matter anymore. You choose a company for the evening based on who you miss the most.

In the zoom, it is possible to turn on music so that it plays in the background for everyone - this can be done by the conference organizer. I advise you to do this: from nine o'clock to arrange an online bar, "warm up", and then everything will happen by itself, your feet will start to dance. At one of the parties, my friends and I frolicked, danced and confessed our love until two in the morning. The next morning everyone laughed, because, when they woke up, they subconsciously expected to see a pogrom at home, like after any party, but everything was clean. You can dress up and make up brightly - everything is like for a regular party, this adds a lot to the realism. I was so impressed that I made a flyer for the next online party. We want as many people as possible to join. There are also midnight interlocutors who, like ours, have lost their regime. Several guys are isolated on their own - I can imagine how they crave communication. We also do yoga in the zoom - about fifteen people definitely gathered, while I hardly know any of them personally.

For me, this format cannot fully replace a live meeting. At an offline party, you can communicate with everyone together, interrupt (this is impossible in the zoom, otherwise you cannot hear anyone at all) or split into groups. But there are also many advantages: you can gather in any composition, regardless of location, you do not need to go anywhere and get ready. My husband and I laugh: how good is it not to call a taxi, not to wait and not to go for a hundred years. I wanted to sleep - I left the chat and that's it.

I went through all the stages of the relationship to this format and have already got used to it. But still, I don't think that this experience in the future will induce everyone to do online gatherings more often - I am sure that this is a necessary measure.

Grisha Prophets

podcast author


I am doing the Blitz and Chips podcast with the team, and we also try to organize all sorts of other things as part of it. For example, every few months we have a party where podcast members and our friends put on music. We have our own small community, so the same people often come to meetings, everything takes place in the most friendly and comfortable atmosphere - I really like it. At the same time, we put on the most different tracks - there are, for example, parties with kuduro music, which is played in Angola, Portugal and Brazil, or just with all kinds of fun electronic pop music.

When the quarantine started, a friend of mine showed me the parties that were being held in the Club Quaratine zoom. These are queer events where drag queens perform, there are performances and so on - a bunch of cool musicians and DJs (Charli XCX, Sega Bodega, Dorian Electra) have already played on them. The main advantage of the zoom is that there you can display individual visitors to everyone on the screens, so while the DJ is playing, everyone is looking at each other, dancing, grimacing. It's very cool, it creates a sense of community and belonging, as if you are really going to a party with a bunch of cool people, and not just sitting and poking at the screen.

I knew right away that we needed to bring parties online. We rocked a bit, but in the end we got down to business - and already played as many as five pieces. This is really a lot of fun, invigorates and cheers up: people are not just going to listen to music online, but as if they are participating in some event. Users from all over the world are connected - mostly Russian-speaking, but sometimes they write in foreign languages and ask what is happening here.

We have two main formats: one is more danceable, the other is more relaxed. At dance meetings, everyone jumps and gets tired as if they went to a club. In a different format, we put on completely calm music, to which you can do anything: people play chess, collect puzzles, iron, wash dishes, and also draw each other. And still there is a feeling that you are not doing all this alone.

I'm pretty sure we'll now be hosting online parties every weekend until the end of the quarantine. We ourselves feel that it is necessary, and people also write literally with gratitude that this is very important, it cheers up. If you want to connect, I write about everything on instagram and telegram.


Nastya Petrakova

PR manager

It so happened that the birthday of my beloved friend coincided with the period of isolation. She lives in St. Petersburg, and for some time, when I also lived there, we were very active: we climbed on roofs, stormed exhibitions, theaters, and after them - bars. I recently moved to Moscow, and because of the new coronavirus, I had to retire to my relatives in the outback.

When my friend's birthday came, I wanted to celebrate it as if we were nearby, and always with drive! So I planned a party. I came up with a costume evening, sent a musical invitation to her and her friend in advance, and offered to call everyone the birthday girl wants to see. Wearing a mask, glasses and gloves, I ran to the store, where I bought balls, candles, champagne and cake. Suddenly, even an elegant mask was found. At the appointed time, everything was ready: I pasted rhinestones around my eyes, put on an elegant dress, tall heels and a mask, laid out the balls and lit candles on the tiramisu, which was depressed without a refrigerator.

Except for me, no one really dressed up: here's the first minus of online parties - no discipline. However, after ten minutes it was no longer important. We clinked glasses with champagne through the camera, danced to Sinatra, a friend blew out the candles on the cake right through the camera. All this looked extraordinary and bizarre, my legs got tired from dancing, as if I really went out somewhere in tall velvet sandals.

Although the party was awesome and we had a lot of fun, the online event still doesn't compare to a live get-together. I love the touch, the voices of people around, and that everyone smells the same when they are sitting in a curtain of tobacco. We recently organized a small evening of meeting alumni with classmates in an online format - again my initiative. On the whole, everyone was happy to see each other, which is no wonder after five years of silence. But it didn't work out for a long time to sit at the cameras - children and partners were distracting. In addition, in the zoom, you cannot shamelessly interrupt (and I love that), you cannot throw a playing card on the table, touch a friend's new jacket, smear someone with nachos sauce and spill wine. In general, we are all waiting for summer and freedom!

Violetta Ryabko

Greenpeace employee and channel author

about ecofeminism


A few weeks ago we celebrated our wedding anniversary with my husband. We thought about how this could be done, and decided to invite guests to the zoom. At the same time, we divided people: first we phoned relatives via WhatsApp, because it is not easy to explain to everyone how to install special programs, and only then we met with friends. We designated the time after which everyone joined the meeting, talked, drank wine (or whoever had something). Basically, I liked the party, I was very glad to see everyone. With some friends, we then made another call just to chat.

No need to wash dishes or cook anything - this has its advantages. You can unite people from different cities and countries that you rarely see. But in general, of course, you really miss the opportunity to hug, talk to everyone live and separately. The difficulty of the online format is that it is not clear how to speak: the more people, the harder it is. It often happens that ordinary parties - whether you plan them or not - do not go according to the script, but there is no such spontaneity in the zoom - you are unlikely to get something that you did not expect.

There are also plans to join an online party where everyone is dancing. Our guests were not ready for dancing - we were just discussing something.

Anastasia Narushevich

journalist and author of the telegram channel "One shot"


I don't like video chats and have always felt embarrassed when I needed to speak to someone on Skype. I always straightened my hair, was constantly distracted by unnecessary details and could not have a dialogue for a long time. But the quarantine put everything in its place, and had to adapt to the new realities.

In the first weeks of self-isolation on Fridays, I went to the online bar - you are not familiar with the other participants in the chat, therefore, people come across very different. But sometimes a miracle happens, and you find pleasant companions with whom you can talk for two hours and for a while forget that you cannot leave the house. Also recently we celebrated the birthday of a friend of the zoom. She gathered a large company in which I knew everyone - it was nice to see the guys even in this format. We drank wine, made toasts and recalled funny stories with the birthday girl. It seems that this format of parties is optimal, although I am not ready to gather that way often.

I can't say that isolation made me less sociable. But the flow of information from all sides forced us to filter all communication channels very strongly. Now I find it most comfortable to call on the video chat on Instagram, because this is how you can use masks. Otherwise, I still prefer to make phone calls.


Anya Eremina

PR Manager RSVP

A friend of mine was hosting an online birthday party. With the same company we call each other in the zoom almost every evening - the meeting was distinguished by the fact that the birthday girl had sent us a bottle of wine and holiday hats the day before, and we also agreed that we would definitely dress up. I put on a white dress shirt, put on makeup and even put on earrings. There were five of us on the call, which is optimal for this format.

In my opinion, video calling parties are tricky. Firstly, you cannot unite people from different companies, since you will not be able to retire according to your interests. From this, the soulfulness and atmosphere are lost, as in offline meetings: it is impossible to talk to someone heart to heart, to hug loved ones. Secondly, when people drink, they usually become much more sociable, but the zoom allows only one or two people to speak. If several people want to speak at the same time, then the system will silence everyone - you will have to watch the faces of the interlocutors who have not heard anything and ask to repeat, but you do not understand whether they are asking you or not.

At an online party we played Crocodile, explained the words with a pantomime. Faced with the same feature: when several people guess at the same time, the winner is the one who was heard by the rest, and not the first one who shouted out the correct answer. Online meeting entertainment is limited. We wanted to sing and dance, but if one turns on the music, the others cannot sing along, because the zoom immediately mutes them. Of course, you can sing by turning off the microphone, but there is no pleasure from it and it looks rather strange. It's a little strange to dance in front of the screen: everyone seems to be moving, but it looks ridiculous and not as fun as in life.

In the process, you feel as if in the TV series "Black Mirror": for a split second it may seem that the world is unreal, and you have been sitting alone in a hospital ward for a long time and it all seems to you. The video format has one plus - you don't have to go anywhere before and after. But this convenience is not worth what we lose without personal communication. Zoom meetings are a great option in quarantine conditions, I definitely would not want to meet like this always. But we will definitely remember this experience as interesting and unusual.

Tanya Genzaleva

advertising agency strategist


I really wanted to celebrate my birthday live. But when it became clear that there would be no offline holiday, it had to be transferred to a digital format and opened a personal online bar. I got ready: a couple of days before that, I bought several bottles of wine and, using a taxi delivery, sent it to friends who might not have had alcohol. I called quite a lot of people, and almost all came: at the same time there were about twelve people at the party, and during the whole time about twenty were connected. Since not all the invitees knew each other, I collected photos of each of them - ours together or their pictures from social networks, which I really like. When a new participant joined the broadcast, I put his photo on the background and presented to the others.

Despite the fact that I was the initiator and thought of almost everything, the most important part of any birthday was planned by friends: I blew out the candles on holiday cupcakes in several districts of Moscow. My colleagues agreed in advance, at a certain moment they turned off the lights in the rooms, and then appeared with candles - on the count of three, we blew them out together. For me it was completely unexpected and very touching.

Of course, if I could celebrate my birthday as planned, it would have gone much better. Still, I don't regret it at all. This is a new and unusual experience: I had no idea that you could chat about life for several hours while drinking wine, trying on the most stupid masks, with memes and funny pictures on the backgrounds, and at the same time almost physically feel the warmth of communication. And besides, thanks to the online format, I gathered a number of people who now do not live in Moscow and would not have been able to come to the holiday.

Of course, during the period of self-isolation, there is a very lack of communication. Therefore, my friends and I meet online and on less solemn occasions: to drink wine together in the evening or get together with a company that could not meet for a whole year, because no one had the same schedule.

PHOTOS: Norm Form -, Marina -

Popular by topic