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Tips and Tricks for Hangouts on Air
updated Sept. 13, 2012

Hangouts on Air is a service from Google+ that lets any number of viewers watch your Hangout; within Google+ itself or live on YouTube. The final video version of the Hangout is uploaded automatically to YouTube.

http://www.google.com/+/learnmore/hangouts/onair.html

Google+ has rolled this feature out to 220 countries on Earth, so everyone on the planet should have the ability to produce a Hangout on Air.

We currently use this functionality for our +Virtual Star Party, where we connect a handful of telescopes to a hangout and broadcast a live view of the night sky. But you could use this service for almost anything.

This guide will give you the basics of Hangouts on Air. If you'd like to learn how to promote your Hangout, read my other guide:

Perfectionist's Guide to Marketing Your Hangout on Air
https://plus.google.com/110701307803962595019/posts/UXzKtfoPR88

Important... Verify your YouTube Account

Before you do anything, make sure you have verified your YouTube account. You want to make sure your account can handle videos longer than 15 minutes, otherwise, your Hangout won't get saved.

http://support.google.com/youtube/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1628029

Gear
- The quality of the video camera and microphone matter a lot. Get a good webcam like a Logitech 910C and a headset microphone. Don't settle for crappy embedded webcams.

http://www.logitech.com/en-us/webcam-communications/webcams/hd-pro-webcam-c920

- Most headset microphones can sound really bad too, so invest in a USB headset, or even better, a desktop microphone like a Blue Snowball.

http://www.bluemic.com/snowball/

- You want to run your hangout on the fastest computer you have at your disposal. That will make the video as smooth as possible.

- Every participate should use a wired line (not wireless) to maximize your upload speed.

- Everyone needs to wear headphones or earbuds to reduce echo. No exceptions.

- You want to avoid backlighting, which will make a person dark in the video. Don't have a bright window behind your back. Get some kind of light pointing at you.

- Try to have an interesting background behind you. A plain white wall is really boring. But a big living room can look really great. Just clean your kitchen first.

- Try to get the camera positioned at eye level or even pointing slightly down at you. If you're using a laptop, you'll want to put it on a box or some books. It'll look much better.

- Thanks to a recent update, mobile devices can now join a Hangout on Air. This is a great time to experiment with new ideas. Take your Hangouts on the road and report from the scene.

Integration with Events
- When you know when your event is going to happen, you'll want to schedule a public event so people can put it into their calendars. Make sure you select Advanced options -> On Air Event. Then invite the public to the event.

http://www.google.com/+/learnmore/events/

Make sure you don't choose "Hangout", that will create a trap that puts people into the wrong location.

- You should also schedule another event just for the participants. This will let you coordinate together, but it's not visible to the public.

Initial Preparations
- If you're going to have a lot of people participating, start the Hangout early to get everyone in and settled, with the right devices, etc. Remember that the Hangout is secret until you actually hit broadcast.

- You can only invite people in your circles into the Hangout, so make sure you have all the people you want in a circle beforehand. It's very difficult to invite people specifically if you don't have them in circles. If you do need to invite someone, and don't have them in a circle, email them the URL to the private hangout interface, and they'll be able to get in.

- You can't invite the "Public" into a Hangout on Air. If you do need to do that, you can always copy-paste the private URL to the chat, so people can join it directly.

- Minimize the amount of programs running on your computer. You might want to screenshare various parts of your computer during the Hangout, so make sure you're not going to be broadcasting anything private. Strip down your browser toolbars, turn off chat programs, etc. Autohide your dock/start menu so people don't see it if you need to screenshare.

- Think about copyright/intellectual property before you start streaming. Make sure you own the rights to anything you broadcast, or there'll be hell to pay, with angry lawyers.

- You can join a Hangout twice from two different devices. This will let you put up screenshots, videos, etc in another pane. It also acts like a backup, letting you control the Hangout from two different devices. If one goes down, switch to the other. 

- Queue up all your other methods of promoting the Hangout, like Twitter, Facebook, etc. When you go live, you'll be able to copy-paste the URL and multiply the number of viewers.

- To maximize the viewership, try to stick to a regular schedule. We record Mondays at 2000 GMT and Thursdays at 1800 GMT.

- Create an intro screen graphic beforehand that introduces the Hangout. You'll run this in your hangout for the first 5 minutes before you actually get started.

Running the Hangout
- The Hangout doesn't go public until you actually click "Start Broadcast". Your YouTube recording starts after that point too.

- When you do hit broadcast, the Hangout will appear in your stream, so you'll want people to link directly to the post that contains the Hangout. That way you can get people to post comments, give feedback, etc. You want to corral people into this single location.

- If audio quality is important to you, have each participant choose Studio Mode from their hangout settings. The audio quality is dramatically better, but the upload bandwidth is enormous, so you definitely need a fast wired connection.

Here's a great demonstration with +Daria Musk showcasing the difference between voice and studio mode:
http://mashable.com/2012/08/14/google-plus-studio-mode-daria-musk/

- You can get the permalink to the Hangout by right-clicking on the timestamp of the post that contains the Hangout.

http://www.wikihow.com/Find-the-Permalink-of-a-Google%2B-Post

- For the first 5 minutes of your Hangout, run a graphic that explains that the Hangout is about to start. Get all of the participants to mute their audio/video so it's all black screens. You can't talk to each other, but you can coordinate through chat. This will give your audience a few minutes to join in, and settle down. It also gives you time to Tweet, FB share and embed your Hangout in all your websites.

- You can get the embed code for the video in the upper right-hand corner of the window. You can put that into websites. Nobody can see your video until you actually click "Start Broadcast", so you can put the embed code on websites and don't have to worry that people will see what you're doing before you're ready to broadcast. Viewers just see a message that the broadcast will start shortly.

- Your live video will also be broadcast over on YouTube. People will be making comments over there, so make sure you watch for comments on both Google+ and YouTube.

- People find typing and background noises really frustrating, so encourage people to mute their microphones when they're not talking

- You're the director. This means that you can override the camera switching that Google normally does. If you click on a person's pane and make them the focus, the viewers will see that too. But you can also just let the Hangout handle the switching on its own. Just don't forget to click the focus off again.

- Use the Cameraman app within Hangouts on Air to hide and reveal participants to the Hangout. Once they're hidden and then revealed, they'll need to unmute themselves again before they can talk.

http://thenextweb.com/google/2012/07/13/new-cameraman-app-for-google-hangouts-lets-you-control-which-guests-appear-to-your-viewers/

- It's okay to be casual and make mistakes. Viewers appreciate that it's real and they're not seeing some overly slick production. But try to create the highest production quality you can.

- Screensharing from a browser is very memory intensive. If you just need to show a picture, consider using an image utility to do that, not the browser. Try to get another participant to screenshare an image, instead of the person talking. We mostly use +Hangout Lower Third to showcase pictures within the Hangout.

https://plus.google.com/104402231746556471870/posts

- During the course of the Hangout, you'll see the total number of viewers listed in the upper right-hand corner of the Hangout. Yay!

- If you want to let the public into your Hangout and join the broadcast, you can post a link to the Hangout into the comments. Anyone who clicks that link will appear in the Hangout. Once publicized, though, it can never be un-publicized. You're stuck with anyone who jumps into your public show.

- Your hangout is limited to 4 hours of total broadcast time. You'll get a warning when you're an hour away from the end of your time limit.

Afterwards
- The output video dropped into your Youtube account is pretty low quality, so you'll want another way of recording it if the quality is an issue (something like Screenflow).

- That output video is set to public by default. It's also embedded into the original post on Google+ where you hosted the live show. And there's no way to remove it, without deleting the whole post.

- The trimming tools on Youtube take 6+ hours to render, so it's better to just post the whole hangout if you're happy with the quality and didn't say anything embarrassing in the beginning. You'll want to practice minimizing the initial preparations, so you don't need to even trim it.

- Make sure you embed the output video somewhere accessible after the fact. We find we get about 20x the viewership afterwords than what happened live. People will expect to be able to see what happened in the hangout.

Key Extensions

There are three extensions that will make your Google+ Hangout on Air much much easier to run. Unfortunately, at the time I'm posting this, you can't actually run all three together:

+Hangout Lower Third by +Moritz Tolxdorff 
Creates a lower third graphic title, so people watching the Hangout know who everyone is.

https://plus.google.com/104402231746556471870/posts

+Hangout Comment Tracker  by +Gerwin Sturm  
This will give you an additional pane in your hangout, and show you all the comments getting generated on Google+ and on YouTube for your hangout. This way you don't have to switch around to multiple windows.

http://www.allmyplus.com/hangout-comment-tracker/

You can run a standalone version of this: http://www.allmyplus.com/hangout-comment-tracker/app.html

+Pro Studio  by +Chad LaFarge 
Gives you a ton of controls over the hangout, including muting members, letting participants raise their hands - you can even kick people out of the hangout.

http://vspotnow.com/prostudio/
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128 comments
 
It would be great if anyone knew of a program that can directly stream a firewire cam.
 
THANKS FOR THIS!!! I just started doing my regular hangout on Thursday nights for the "Girls of Geek" discussing various topics. Hoping to get broadcast capabilities soon!
 
BTW, In G+, it is very difficult to pause or stop and on-air hangout as in your stream... the status bar is quite difficult to get to appear once the Hangout is running.
 
After being a guest panelist on 4 On Airs in the past week, I have the same question as +Sarah Kimmel ... How can us normal people get an On Air Account?

+Lynette Young was nice enough to do a private hangout for my students and they are in awe. We are actually positioning this in my niche as the next evolution of Webinar software. Now if only I had that software :]

Lynette did explain to me that On Air is limited until Google can work out the kinks of copyright for Happy Birthday song issues.

I do have one tip of my own +Fraser Cain and that's Camera quality is derived by the lens: Plastic is OK but HD webcams with glass lenses produce the highest quality video. Forget the tech specs, buy glass lens cams only.

I am very happy with my FaceVision HD cam. My Cam also has internal stereo speakers with noise cancelling built in so I am able to use my speakers with no headphones. However you are going to have to use headphones if you are using a laptop.
 
We were using Hangouts to record Astronomy Cast for 4 months, begging Google for access to Hangouts on Air. So, maybe you need to use the technology a lot already to get selected?
 
Very, very good tips! I'm just wondering one thing. Why do you need a headset? I've got a Yeti Blue Mic and it works perfectly! No problems in hangouts at all for me. The Yeti is a pro-sumer table top mic so you don't have anything covering your face at all, that way you look so much cleaner.

Just a tip of my own for the future!
 
+Fraser Cain Thanks so much for sharing this information. It's an amazing resource with great tips and best practices.
 
Hangout video tip .. Try not to be too close to your camera. Try to copy to how news readers are framed by the pro's. Try to frame yourself from a little above your head to about lower chest. Wider framing looks quite professional (notice that head only close ups are rare for presenters/news readers) and are kinder. Also it allows hand/arm gestures to be in frame. A close up of your head looks wonderful ;-) but isn't necessarily very flattering.
 
+David Holman You don't need a headset, but you need headphones or earbuds. You don't want sound coming out of your speakers.
 
+Fraser Cain Yes, that is true, I just compliment what you wrote since you only mentioned a headset. I'd recommend discrete ear buds, once again to keep your head clean. Especially if you're streaming the hangout and want a professional look.
 
Funny I was tagged in this... I'm actually making a series of how-to videos on Hangouts. They are informative AND funny.... ;)
 
+Lynette Young Really looking forward to seeing the videos :) Just let me know if you need any help with production/post. I love editing.
 
Yes, but Hangouts on Air let any number of people watch.
 
Hell, I'd just like to have access to the Hangout On Air function for our Friday web show.
 
Super great tips! I have HOA and can say most of the tips apply no matter if you're streaming or not. Feedback & echo drives me INSANE! I'm an old podcaster so the audio quality is a sticking point for me. Please, for the love of kittens, invest in a decent microphone if you have HOA or plan on participating in them a lot!
 
+Jack Humphrey taught me the value of a great microphone on his FTR BTR show. I would sound as cool as Jack but I am too cheap....
 
Not to hijack your post, but I'm doing a HOA this Monday that will be talking about how to set up the visual parts of a hangout to be professional with +Jane Ellen. We won't be covering tech stuff, but visuals are just as important.
 
Wait a minute +Lynette Young I am the post hijacker around here and don't your forget it (:<||
 
great tips +Fraser Cain . Was a pleasure hanging with you tonight. Here's a couple other suggestions. In addition: The green audio bar underneath the thumbnails is a great tool for determining source of echo/buzz. Also... silicone keyboard covers we have found success in reducing typing noise.
 
Thanks +Sarah Hill, feel free to make any other suggestions, I'll keep adding to the list.
 
Really useful, thanks Fraser. I would really like some advice for musicians playing in hangouts and how best to handle your sound, any ideas please?
 
+paul stickland Sound is a really tricky one because of the lag involved. I've heard rumors that the Hangouts team is working on a new audio codec that might make hangout music collaboration possible.
 
I was wondering about that for the future. I really wondered how best to just play our songs which will be a mix of guitar vocals and backing. +RAM Rich was suggesting a hangout to discuss this, which would be great.
 
I would love some input as to how we can better moderate the 10 peep panel. When I do GoTo webinars we have a professional moderator now that makes the whole thing slick..

When a bunch of people that don't know each other meetup for the first time on a HO, they fall all over each other trying to talk.

We hung out with +Chris Harris yesterday and watched the early playoff game together. Since almost no one on the HO had used them heavily or knew each other it took a while to them to feel comfortable.

At the same time, I always have tons of good (i think) questions but it seems such bad manners to jump in to ask one when it's on topic.

How can we do this better all and set a easy example for the rest?

First idea - We need a universal sign to flash that you have a question, chat is not good enough. Distraction....
 
Oh, and +Chris Harris here's probably the best one stop Hanout tech advice yet. Great show yesterday Chris!
 
+Fraser Cain This is a great comprehensive list. I did a quick video of my setup for Google Plus Week here: https://plus.google.com/u/0/102898672602346817738/posts/WNiU1dCPuQr When I do the show I have a Hangout on Air going and bring that in as a shot to a different computer running Wirecast. Among all the great pieces of advice on this post is to make sure you make the show available after the fact. We'll have 20-50 people watch live but 2,000 to 4,000 will watch the recorded version on YouTube over the next week.
 
Totally agreed. You need to give people a way to watch what you've done after.
 
I would add - do not take being muted as a bad thing - understand typing on your keyboard and talking to others when you are not the one on "air" is actually incredibly distracting.

This is a great list of do's and don'ts....I wish it popped up before people hangout...
 
Thanks! Waiting for HoA myself, +Chris Lang. Waiting a long time... grr...

Really nice checklist from professional experience. Thanks so much for sharing this.
Peace~
 
Very detailed, very useful and very well written.
I didn't host any Hangout yet but this will come very handy the first time I do.
Thank you very much!
 
+Fraser Cain What have you found is the best way to bring the public in on live chat...to ask questions, make comments to each other.
*Actually have someone IN the Hangout notice them outside of their own private G+ chat stream.
I know if they click over to YouTube, there's chat there...but wondered if there were better alternatives.
 
This is fantastic.  Thank you! I had the echo problem on my first recording, but we are regrouping and will put your advice to good use.  I am using Google+ On Air to bring speakers from around the world into my classroom.
 
This is a great resource, thank you for sharing! 
 
Thank you for putting this together and sharing.
 
+Fraser Cain how does one make sure their YouTube account is capable of recording more than just 15 minutes of video?
 
+Josh Nicholls You have to verify it. You can do that from within YouTube. See what your upload limit is, and follow their instructions to extend it.
 
Has anyone experienced a situation where all signs are that Google+ is working properly but then the video never appears in YouTube?  I seem to have ost a wonderful interview somewhere along the way.  Thanks
 
+Michael Netzley Have you verified your account on YouTube? If not, >15 minute videos will be destroyed.
 
Fraser, this is an absolutely FANTASTIC resource.  I'm going to do my first hangout on air in september, canning tomatoes with people from all over the country (so far, San Francisco, Chicago-land, Minnesota, New Jersey).   I'm very grateful to you for writing such a thoughtful post.   It really will be helpful to me.   THANK YOU !
 
Thanks for the overview +Fraser Cain 
I was missing one issue. My hangouts-on-air were suffering quite a lot from collapses, and then I was suggested to change for the hangouts from my standard Chrome browser to Firefox or IE. (Safari seems to suck too).
I did only on HOA on Firefox and that was a very good experience. Is this an issue, or is it just my imagining things that are not there?
 
+Fraser Cain nice update to the Guide on HOA shows... #hoatips   #rbbm  

If I might stress one item here... it is the Copyright issue: HOA are treated differently than most Copyright issues on YouTube. With HOA it is One Strike and You Are OUT... YouTube gives you 3, live video, via HOA... you only get 1.. then your HOA ability is removed, and you have to try to get it reinstated manually.
 
+Ronnie Bincer That is very interesting. There must be clear guidelines somewhere showing exactly which songs ('Happy Birthday to You' etc.) are copyright 'free' in terms of HOA. I play music and Hangout and would like to extend my music teaching into HOA.
 
+Clarissa Vincent One would like to think that, but there are no 'clear' guidelines that I have found... The clearest I can say is "if you own the rights" and can prove it, then you should be OK, though you may get a strike for a little while until you can clear it up!
 
The fact the HOAs are not allowed on mobile devices by OS and device says that Google is not ready to trust anyone on this yet.

We still do interviews and HOA from Einstein Bagels here in Denver +Clarissa Vincent but we are sure to have the wall to our back and be sure no people, or license plates appear in our video backgrounds.

Also it has NOTHING to do with HOAs, it has everything to do with YouTube music TOS. It also depends on who owns the copyright to the music and if they pursue such.

Say you show the weather channel on your TV or say some of an NFL game thru the webcam. You are going to get dinged on that one.

But let's say you are a music teacher, and you teach classical piano, and the piece you are teaching is in the public domain. Then you would be cool.

But also remember this. Eric Carmen's "All By Myself" uses Rachmaninoff second movement for the Piano Concerto #2. The Rachmaninoff family sued and successfully won the suit because the still own the rights. It is not public domain as Eric Carmen claimed.

Bottom line, do you due diligence. Getting kicked off social sites is no fun when you have spent much time building a hot profile.

And when you get kicked off YouTube it is for good. If you have linked G+ to a YouTube account and you get the YouTube profile taken down? Then it currently is for good and that means no more HOAs for that Google Profile. 
 
I'm negotiating with copyright issues. I have some YouTube videos of backing songs, only chords, no melody line, but they are quite obviously well known pop songs. What you say +Chris Lang makes me seriously consider removing them.
 
+Clarissa Vincent FYI, you can get 3 stikes in YouTube videos for © issues, and be working on fixing that, but if you get 1 strike during a live HOA, that shuts down your HOA privileges until you can clear it up.
 
Thanks for taking the time to put this guide together... I'm now encouraged that it may not be as difficult as I thought.... lots to keep in mind though to enjoy a successful event  :-)
 
I was left really frustrated today as my HOA crashed and burned due to poor wireless connection. Not being able to broadcast events over WiFi at venues other than your own house is a real bummer.

Thanks for the tips though. +Fraser Cain  +Ronnie Bincer 
 
+Phillip Maddick right now it is always safer to have a 'wired' machine be the primary 'host' but I do HOA from Wireless all the time (I'm risky like that!) but from a consistent location where the wireless signal is pretty steady.
 
+Phillip Maddick I bought a Huawei E586 MiFi unit for hangouts and it works very well. We broadcast our wedding from a park for four hours!
 
It was the macbook pro that ran out of power first!
 
Very impressive for the price and you can get unlocked ones on ebay.
 
Does that mean no subscription? I've heard 3 are quite expensive. 
 
I have a 3 one, no subscription and it's fine, you can get the sims much cheaper on ebay. My son +Rowan Stickland uses an unlocked one. ( he is totally off grid using solar panels for all electrical needs)
 
Cool, thanks for the heads up. I'll check it out over the weekend. 
 
Hey Fraser... is it possible to use the YouTube App to show YouTube videos in a HOA that will broadcast to the public?  Thanks for all your help!  :-)
 
+Erik Archbold I'd love to know this as well. So far, I haven't found the ability to do this during a live hangout.
 
Hi +Fraser Cain  what about if you want to keep your Hangout private, and not have it on Youtube, is it possible? I assume it has to do with the privacy settings?
 
If it's a hangout on air, it has to be public.
 
Because a Hangout can also be "not on air"? Sorry I've never used it before, mainly because of that.
 
do you have to be 18 and over to start a hangout on air
 
Do you know of a way to require registrations for the Hangout? I'm sure there's not a way, but I just have to ask...
 
Does anyone know if you can use google hangout with the logitech camera and google TV?  We are looking for a way to have a TV and HDTV camera setup without purchasing a separate computer to run the connection through for video conferencing.  

We are currently using Google hangout - so can the google TV box be used with Google Hangout?
 
Thanks for the great, in depth and detailed information. Very helpful.
 
Pretty cool... I'm just unclear on one thing... How do you implement an intro screen graphic? No instructions... Not sure how to do it.
 
Whats the difference between Google hangout & Global hangout?
 
is it true that if your YouTube cannot upload videos longer than 15 min then you will not be able to save Hangout on Air that are longer than 15 min?
 
+Mike Atwell No, it seems that HOAs are the exception to that rule... if you consider it "uploading" when you do a HOA.
 
Thanks for all the info Fraser. I'm new to hangouts..and astronomy (got a telescope from Santa this year :) Hoping to catch one of your upcoming hangouts soon. Question: how do you record through your telescope?  Also, I read on a search that a program called ManyCam  (free download at Cnet) will allow a firewire camera to work through hangouts.. haven't tested it yet but it came from a reliable souce so I will be checking it out.
 
I plugged in my hdcam Ronnie but google hangouts didn't recognize it
 
Thank you, great, clear & simple info that's still very applicable
 
Can you watch youtube videos while On Air? Wondering if you can use the youtube app in Hangouts to watch youtube videos with a large audience. If so can they only be videos from your own account? Or can you watch any youtube videos you want?
 
This is really a great post.  For the life of me I couldn't figure out how people were getting their names on the screen in the hangouts I was watching.
 
This might be to much to ask of Google Hangount, but let me try here:
 I need a setup (kit) for workshops, presentations and conferences.

I have been experimenting with two colleagues to fint out whic external mics and headsets to use with Google Hangout (On Air). If you don´t want to use headset, there are a lot of obstacles, we found. You can easily get sound INTO your pc ( we have used Sony Bluetooth Wireless mics with minijack) Then you are cable free and can move freely infront of your webcam . But you can´t hear other participants. 

But if you want feedback and communicate with other partipants, it is not possible. First of all there is only one 3,5 m.m. audio socket in most new computers. SO since you are using that for your mic - no feedback.

We found out that USB mics like Snowball and AUDIO TECHNICA AT2005USB let you use the 3,5 mm jack for feedback. 

But then you are not wireless. 

Is there a kit we can use? 

Who has done this?

Any thoughts?
 
in Hangout when you 'Share Desktop' does it also share 'System Audio' I doubt it, unless audio source is set to 'System Audio Output'

thinking of sharing an Adobe Connect meeting via a Google+ Hangout... wouldn't that be precarious! Still, sharing a Google+ Hangout via YouTube is great but the limitation for me as a multimedia specialist serving a research organization is that the video quality on air (YouTube) is too low for sharing charts and graphics of any detail.   

What other video streams can you share via Google Hangouts on Air besides YouTube?
 
+Mike Atwell you can not actually share the YouTube content if it is a HOA (not without a special setup) since the youtube app is set to not allow that for © reasons.

Std. screenshare does not share system audio... again some have special ways to make that work.

Bottom line is, Hangouts and HOA are not optimized well to share any video.
 
Great post! I have a question, hope someone can answer it. What is the best way to broadcast a video through a hangout on air... For example if we are discussing a trailer and we want the audience to see that trailer also.

Thanks a lot!
 
How do i change it back to the default where i can just see my contacts online or offline?? 
 
Very glad to see Glass now can join an existing Hangout, but it CANNOT join a Hangout On Air, since the notifications don't come through for that.  Is there any work around?
 
How do you get rid of "What's hot and recommended" and everything else that's not from your circle?
 
Hi Fraser, Thank you for the tips and tricks, i think they are really helpful. I would like to know if there is any method to put the link that give access directly to the hangout in advance. For Example, if i want to program a Hangout that begins in 5 days, and also I create a Facebook Event, is there any posibility to get the link for the Hangout in advance and publish in facebook, or do we have to wait until the last time to publish the link? Thank You very much!!
 
when one does a Google Hangout - if you choose screenshare and opt for 'presentation' rather than desktop - this functionality does not seem to work....any suggestions?
 
+Andrew Ive no way to give accurate advise until you say what program you are attempting to 'share' via the screen share app. Bottom line is, if your menus go away, the screen share function of Hangouts will not work.
 
How do you increase the number of participants?
 
what other benefits can a Paid Version of Hangout On Air give? aside from the additional 5 participants....
 
+Charlotte Pierce not directly, but a speaker phone and a headset can do wonders if you are willing to 'work around' the HOA limitations.
 
+Mitchell Duke The hangout excepted my firewire feed directly from my JVC camera and it also excepted my firewire feed from my video switcher when using a two camera senerio.
 
There should be a way to set the presenter when the organizer is a different person.
 
+Tracy Allen there are plenty of people still just 'discovering' the power of Hangouts... not to worry, there is still 'room to make your mark'. Welcome to the fun!
 
Does anybody know if there's a way to host a Hangout On Air with just one person on video (me) but with unlimited people in a chat? I'm trying to set it up where my readers (100+) can join the chat and ask me questions to which I respond live on camera.
 
+Ryan Eubanks this can easily be done by using the Event tool on G+... watch me do it live this Wednesday http://goo.gl/mL8qnf - in this case there will be 3 of us in the 'filmstrip' but it could be just one person if you wanted.
 
Missed your Wednesday event, +Ronnie Bincer Doing it again any time soon?  Very interested in this approach for our youth group kids who went away to college.  Really interested in how to use an external camcorder for the main video while doing Hangouts with a MacBook.  Thanks, all! :)
 
+Ronnie Bincer Also VERY interested in using HDMI out on an external camcorder into MacBook for Hangouts.  Any advice how to get external camcorders to work?  Thanks!
 
One thing I can't find is a Bluetooth transmitter into which I can plug a min-XLR wireless mic.  For doing HoA's of our presentations, we want to mic the speaker; it would be great to have a simple bluetooth connection going right to our laptop instead of having to deal with all the extraneous audio cables.

I suppose our speaker can wear a bluetooth headset/mic combo - but looks a little dorky when speaking to a group.
 
This is very helpful. Thanks so much!!! Just ran a GHOA and the Camera focused stayed on my guest and I had no idea. But know I have a clue that I hit a setting that I shouldnt have.
 
Do you know of a link to recommendations specifically about headsets that work best - ideally wireless if any of those record well? Some suggested LG Electronics Tone+ HBS730 Bluetooth Stereo Headset but I need to confirm it would be clear on recorded hangouts. Sorry if there is an answer to this somewhere in the comments. There are so many I skimmed them, but could have missed it. +Fraser Cain 
 
I want to delete 5 scheduled hangout's for the future. I found something better to use. How do I delete them?
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