Live Streaming Video Inerviews: Remote Caller Tips and Guide

For Guest Speakers:

Congratulations, you’re invited by one of our clients to be a video call-in guest or interviewee for a television or online production taking place over live streaming services.  MediaOne Studios is providing you with the following guidelines to be sure the segment you appear in makes you look and sound as great and professional as possible.

1. Setup: The Basics for Any Live Streaming Shot

  • Start with a dual-core processor computer or laptop
  • Have the following minimum or recommended configuration to run your streaming software:

  • If you’re using another device to do the production, be sure it’s configured with maximum performance options.
  •  Make sure your Internet upload speed is well over 400 kbps
  • Use a dedicated broadband internet access point with greater than 1.2Mbps bandwidth for High Definition calling
  • Use a good quality webcam if available
  • Have a separate speaker and microphone for better quality sound
  • Use a PC or Mac with a video card and two video outputs when possible
  • If using a laptop, set energy-saving mode for “maximum performance” mode rather than “battery save” mode

2.Day of Interview: Be Ready for Your Live Shot

  •  Download the latest version of your live streaming software like Zoom, VMix, Skype  OBS, BlueJeans  or another option for PC or Mac from the developer's main site i.e. www.vmix.com, www.zoom.com, www.skype.com,
  • Remember: switch from wireless to Ethernet if it’s available
  • Put your webcam at eye level. (Stack your laptop on some books to raise it from the desk or table if necessary).
  • Reduce background noise. Locate your computer’s microphone and remove any nearby items that may interfere or make sounds.
  • Sign in to your Live Streaming Service at least ten minutes prior to the production.
  • Change your settings to allow calls from anyone so for the show you have multiple ways to ensure you get connected during your segment (in the Privacy section)
  • Find the production caller’s Skype name and accept the caller’s invitation to add you as a contact so you can receive their incoming call.
  • With your Audio/Video webcam settings open, set your shot; use an HD webcam, get your Acoustics/Audio right, set the Lighting right for improved performance
  • Check the video preview to make sure you’re not looking down at the computer screen; ideally you’re positioned to be looking directly at the webcam lens.
  • Change all your Notifications – visual, textual, and audible – to ensure you will not receive any during your live interview.

3. During the Call: Ensuring Maximum Quality

  • Perform these actions once the call starts. (You can test the call beforehand, but doing so will not properly emulate the behavior of a truly“live” call because conditions can change at both the host and guest sides.)
  • Run speedtest.net from the computer to be used. The numbers for up- and down-link speeds should be greater than 400 kbps and the ping time (the indicator for latency) should be as low as possible (typically 50-200ms). Further, pingtest.net offers an indication of how suitable a connection is for video calling.
  • When your live call is in progress, set your incoming calls to “send to voice messages.”
  • Sit still for a few moments at the beginning of your call—as though you were having a portrait taken—so the live streaming operator can capture a still image of you (to fallback on in case the live video call gets choppy). If the live streaming operator doesn’t mention taking a fallback snapshot before your live call, request it.

4. Remember: You’re the Expert. Be “Spokesperson Ready”

  • Always have your calling area and environment professionally set up so productions will be confident calling you in as an expert.
  • Use lighting that illuminates you without shadows, softly and from the front, aimed to gently light your face and features, and won’t create harsh shadows.
  • Ensure your illumination provides steady lighting. For example, outdoor lighting through a window may be occasionally darkened by shadows, changes in sunlight, moving curtains, etc., which could cause your camera to automatically adjust to correct lighting changes, resulting in less than optimal image quality.
  • Buy or borrow a USB microphone if you plan to do live video calls frequently. You will get higher quality than the built-in microphone on your computer.
  • Mention all of the things you’ve done to create a high-quality call-in studio setup to assure producers that they can confidently and regularly count on your professionalism when they need an expert opinion for their show.

To download the live streaming vMix software go to www.vMix.com.

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