Every conf call I join includes at least two of the following.
- The leader who is in the conf room calls in from the table phone and from their PC and can't figure out how to stop the screaming feedback. What's funny about this one to me is that the same people do it every time.
- Tom calls from his car. He must be on the interstate, judging from the road gradient we can hear.
- Dick joins from his laptop, where the microphone is conveniently part of the same physical device as the keyboard. CLACKCLACKCLACKCLACK.
- Harry is working from home. We become intimately familiar with his three-year-old daughter's escapades with Cheerios and love of Phineas & Ferb.
- Judging from the number of sirens, Jake apparently lives in a bad part of town or is watching Blues Brothers in the background.
- Lucy has apparently joined while sitting in a conference room, attending another meeting simultaneously.
- Robert joins 15 minutes late and would like everything he missed to be recapped.
- Mark absolutely will not let the meeting progress unless someone is recording. Everyone spends 10 minutes figuring out how to do this. No one can find the file at the end of the meeting.
- James calls in via a VOIP connection from India, introducing a slight delay. "Hello?" "Hellohello" "Hi James, can-" "Hello" "Hi James, we are-" "Hello, hi yes-" "Hi James-"
- Dave joins from the airport. According to the PA, someone named Janice needs to report to the ticket desk.
- Mike has apparently set his cell phone ringer volume to "over 9000" and has placed it next to his mic.
- "Can you see my screen?" "No". "How about now?" -cue pictures of cats- "Yes but I think you have shared the wrong monitor." "How about now?" -cue spreadsheet- "Yes." -cue scrolling that the video broadcast can't keep up with- "Now if you can see here, here and here..."
Mass meetings are the funniest. During one surreal leadership presentation where hundreds of people joined via a web meeting and many more were present in person, someone forgot to lock down presenter rights, and people kept drawing on the slides.
"So, about that system rrrrrrrrrrrRRRRRRRRRRRRAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH and you think so?" (excuse the bad jet noises)
That was a fun hour or so - especially since, even muting the mic when you're not talking, when planes are taking off every 60 seconds, you're bound to get some background noise...
"No, I don't live in a war zone, it's just Chinese New Year."
He never fails to do it.
I've also had the opposite, where the host is UN-muting me, when I'm in the middle of eating my lunch during the meeting. I never got around to asking him WHY he wanted to hear me slurping my tea and crunching on my crisps (chips for the Americans).
If nothing else, they'd be guaranteed to learn proper etiquette by learning what not to do.