GoToMeeting 6.0 doesn’t extend Citrix’s lead

Announced as the most prominent new addition in version 6.0, GoToMeeting introduces a labs menu in the Control Panel that allows you to use several new features:

  • Video sharing – allows you to share videos much quicker and stream audio at the same time.
  • Profile pictures – allows you to become more familiar with who you talk to without video conferencing.
  • Allow pane undocking – more suited for power users as it gives them more of a customized control.
  • Allow sharing a rectangle – allows you to share a specific part of your screen. Do you use an iPad reflector app, but do not want people to know?
  • Show control panel to attendees – allows you to demonstrate how to navigate your control panel.

The Labs menu came to be due to customer’s interests; Citrix listened to feedback and added the functionality. Continue reading

Does your online meeting tool speak your language?

Let’s face it: if you are using an online meeting solution chances are you are not using it to conduct a meeting with your neighbor, but rather someone located somewhere far away on this planet. Business is international and we have all managed to agree on a language to communicate with. But still we enjoy it when a business partner or colleague tries himself or herself in our native language even if they hardly get the sentence out. So the question is: if we appreciate the effort of others to address us in our language, why don’t online meeting tools let us address invitees in their own languages? Continue reading

BeamYourScreen leaps to number three

Cisco, RHUB and Microsoft – the web conferencing vendors ranked numbers three through five – will have to each step down a rank. BeamYourScreen, formerly ranked number seven, is now available for download in version 4 and brings many enhancements. Just as with the release of version 3 last year, when the tool climbed from rank 18 to 6, the developers once again have done a great job in actually improving the software.
Continue reading

The potential risk of screen sharing

Imagine you’re in a web conference, sharing your screen, when all of a sudden a chat window pops open because you forgot to close the app. Or worse, you forget that your screen is being shared and start typing your own chat message. Well, it happens to the best of us. It actually did just the other day, to a colleague. And it made us think.

Sharing your screen during an online conference can be very risky actually. Not only could you tick a business partner off with a chat message. At the end of a meeting, when a participant’s screen has been shared and the phone conference ends, the participant will often open his mail client before the host can end the meeting. So anybody still in the meeting could read the messages. And if undisclosed files are opened – well, you get the picture.

Users need to be aware what exactly is being shared, at all times. A Mac user sharing his screen with Citrix GoToMeeting can only show his entire screen. Sharing a single app is only possible with Windows. And it is easy to forget. Skype on the other hand – which we do not consider a web conferencing solution, but which serves for demonstration purposes – will not let you forget that someone is seeing your screen or parts of it, by marking the area in question with a red frame.

Now we don’t think web conferencing tools must necessarily go that far. But it should be easily distinguishable to anyone sharing his screen that he is doing so. So we are debating if this should weigh in as a security criteria rather than a mere usability feature.

What do you think? Is this only a minor inconvenience, or do you also regard it as a security risk?