Hybrid Event Moderators

Thank you for agreeing to moderate a session at a BGS event. If you have questions that are not covered in the details below, do not hesitate to contact Geraint Collingridge by email g [dot] collingridge [at] bgs [dot] org [dot] uk or 0207 608 8573

Moderating at an event

The Moderator is effectively the conductor of the session, helping the day run from end to end. They handle several key responsibilities contributing to the smooth running of the event on the day. Good moderating is crucial for a hybrid event, given the importance of ensuring both the in person and on line audience are included and able to participate. The difference between a live audience and virtual audience is that the online audience can switch off their laptops or move on to other tasks. Therefore, to keep them connected and fully engaged, we will aim to have 2 moderators. Moderators are encouraged to be  energetic, use a conversational tone and encourage interaction with the presenters and between in person and online participants.

Key responsibilities
  • Welcome all participants to the session (in persona and online)
  • Encourage total participant engagement (see below)
  • Introduce the presenters
  • Keep to time
  • Field and choose questions submitted in the session chat for the live Q&A session.
  • Make announcements about the rest of the meeting
  • Have fun and be energetic
Encourage participant engagement
  • Remind participants to submit their questions and participate in the session's discussion using the chat box in the session
  • Encourage in person attendees to socialise, visit the exhibition at the meeting and/or join a group discussion during the breaks. Online participants can also engage and interact with others online and visit exhibitors.
  • Remind participant to submit their feedback at the end of the session
Prepare - If moderating online only
  • Minimise background noise. Go to a separate room where possible, and if available, use a noise cancelling headset.
  • Be well lit. Have great lighting. Good lighting helps us see each other better, and thus, stay more engaged.
  • Pay attention to what's in the background. A busy background or people walking behind a presenter can be distracting for others on the call.
  • What to wear? Patterns, stripes or checkers can have a strange effect on video online. It is usually best to wear solid colours.
  • Put the webcam at eye level. This helps make eye contact with others on the video call.
  • Turn notifications off. This will avoid the distraction and noise caused when a notification pings.
  • Test everything. Arrive a 15 minutes before the meeting starts to test your equipment. 
  • Speak slowly and clearly. It’s easier to miss what someone has said over video than in person. Consider investing in a USB microphone for added audio quality.