Thanks to modern technology, it’s possible for many meetings to be conducted over video chat.
Frequently, it’s not really necessary for a participant in a meeting to be paying attention: that person’s time could be better spent doing actual work, or writing emails.
But it is important for the person to look like they’re definitely paying attention, and not typing on their computer.
Here’s a method for a person to seem like they could not possibly be distracted by something else, while still freeing them to do work and ignore the meeting.
Specifically, it relies on the fact that if a person in a meeting has both of their hands visible on the video chat, it means they can’t be casually browsing the Internet at the same time (Figure 1).
However, the “hands” seen in Figure 1 are actually artificial mannequin hands that match the user’s skin tone! The true situation is shown in Figure 2.
PROS: Increases employee efficiency.
CONS: By mitigating the “too many meetings” problem, this technical solution might lessen the social pressure to reduce superfluous meetings.