Business Daily Media

one tip on video conferencing good enough for Matthew McConaughey

  • Written by Katja Lee, Lecturer, Communication and Media Studies, University of Western Australia

If you need confirmation of how much the world has changed, consider this. Finally I have a thing or two to teach Matthew McConaughey about performance.

McConaughey may have acted in more than 50 movies. He may have, among his accolades, two Golden Globes and an Oscar for best actor. He may be a professor of practice in television and film at the University of Texas.

But he’s just as much a newbie when it comes to Zoom, House Party and the like as the rest of us. It’s a performance reality many of us are not really ready for, despite video chat being nearly two decades old.

Whether it’s a games night, a wine with the gang, your new virtual classroom or boardroom, video conferencing is how many of us are maintaining a semblance of our old connections to loved ones, colleagues and community.

“I’m learning about this, a little bit,” McConaughey told late-night TV chat host Stephen Colbert[1] after he hosted bingo over Zoom for Texan seniors.

“I was on a Zoom conference the other day and one of my friends in particular looked just sensational. He was uplit, he looked just like a czar! And I texted him: "What’s your Zoom game, bud?”

His friend’s game was to have considered video-conferencing as a stage, and then setting that stage using the elements used on any television or film set: lighting, sound and scenery.

What I want to talk about, though, is not the stage but what happens on it: performance.

Staging and performance

Performance is what I study in its broadest social sense as a researcher in persona studies. My speciality is celebrity persona. How celebrities strategically create and maintain public personas is the subject of my new book[2] featuring famous Canadian women (including Margaret Trudeau, mother of Canada’s prime minister, and pop singer Shania Twain).

one tip on video conferencing good enough for Matthew McConaughey Shania Twain. Shutterstock

Persona comes from the Greek word for the mask worn by an actor to depict a character. It involves performance, though not acting in the usual sense. It is instead, in the words of leading persona scholars P. David Marshall, Christopher Moore and Kim Barbour[3]:

A strategic public identity that is neither the true individual nor a false individual. It is an identity that is used to navigate the social world and only exists to manage collective connections. It is a performance of the self for strategies to be used in some public setting.

Who are you when you’re in public or interacting with others? How did you create that impression? Persona researchers investigate questions like these in a broad range of contexts – from relationships with family or colleagues to interacting through online video games and social media.

Just think of McConaughey, the good ol’ Texan boy and his development of his signature catchphrase – “alight alright alright”. It’s not false, but nor could it said to be true. It is persona.

Though it is often amplified in celebrities, everyone has a public persona. More than one, in fact.

How we present in a formal meeting is likely to differ to how we interact one-on-one with a close colleague. How we are with friends, and even different groups of friends, might be different again. So too with different family members.

We develop and cultivate these personas over a long period. We become so acclimatised to performing them that they feel “natural”.

Hide Self View

Video conferencing radically changes the conditions under which we interact with others.

As McConaughey’s Zoom mate recognised, it is a shiny new stage on which we’ve been thrust. What makes it different is that it enables (and requires) us to watch ourselves as we perform. This hyper-awareness of how we look and behave can be exhausting, and stressful. It’s not something even most actors ever need to do.

Which is why the “Hide Self View” option is so important.

When you enable this option, you are still performing your persona. You just don’t see it. It’s a little bit more like real life and the other “stages” we’re used to performing on.

Like audio-only phone calls. Here is a “stage” that is deeply familiar and provides some reprieve from the self-surveillance of video-conferencing.

So give yourself, and others, a break from video-conferencing if and when necessary. If you find it exhausting, there’s a good reason. The only real fix is to “switch off”.

That’s a hot tip even for Matthew McConaughey.

References

  1. ^ Stephen Colbert (www.youtube.com)
  2. ^ new book (research-repository.uwa.edu.au)
  3. ^ P. David Marshall, Christopher Moore and Kim Barbour (www.wiley.com)

Authors: Katja Lee, Lecturer, Communication and Media Studies, University of Western Australia

Read more https://theconversation.com/hide-self-one-tip-on-video-conferencing-good-enough-for-matthew-mcconaughey-136609

Business Reports

Six reasons why it pays to automate billing in your business

Harnessing the power of technology to improve the efficiency and accuracy of your billing process can supercharge productivity and profitability. Is your enterprise plagued by billing errors, or struggling to get invoices out...

How Sport4 is changing the way you watch sports

Forget about pay-per-view or checking the score at half time – Sport4 is changing the way Australians watch sports.  Fresh from their national debut at the Judo Australia National Championships, Sport4’s automated sports...

Advantages of Vacation Rental Management Software

The first vacation rental management software systems were launched in the early 1980s. At the time, they were majorly used by hotel owners to manage their properties online. The main functions included hotel reservations and ...

TIP Group grows; appoints new senior executives

Teaminvest Private Group Limited (ASX:TIP) has appointed two new senior executives to further accelerate the company’s growth. Timothy Wong has been appointed Head of TIP Equity (the company’s private equity division) and...

What to Look for in a Point of Sale System

When you're looking for a point of sale system for your business, there are a lot of things to consider. What type of business do you have? How many employees do you have? What features are important to you? In this blog post...

Why Roe v. Wade's demise – unlike gay rights or Ukraine – isn't getting corporate America to speak up

Many Americans reacted with outrage to the Supreme Court's decision to dismantle the constitutional right to abortion.AP Photo/Rick BowmerCorporate America – once known for carefully avoiding public stances on hot button iss...



NewsServices.com

Content & Technology Connecting Global Audiences

More Information - Less Opinion