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On Zoom vs. Meet, GCQ, and Mental Health Check (Scrambled Thoughts #06)

I’m back with my usual rambling on my boring daily life this pandemic! This time, I will try to compare Zoom and Google Meet, vent more about GCQ and the more becoming nonsensical quarantine classifications in the Philippines, and a little bit about my mental health.

ZOOM VS. GOOGLE MEET

Hmmm, where to begin the comparison?

For sure, we know the popularity of the Chinese conference app when this whole ‘work from home’ and ‘online school’ started during the pandemic. I have tried the app as early as 2019, but I only thought of it as Skype-ish one-on-one video calling application.

The very first Department Meeting I attended during the pandemic was held in Google Meet, and that was my first time to use such application. I found it simpler and since it’s a Google app, it’s easy to integrate everything because our university email is running through Google Suite.

On the other hand, there’s this brand stigma against the first conference app, being a Chinese brand. Just like Tiktok, there are conspiracies about it stealing data and personal information, but of course it can’t be proven.

On one hand, here are some pros I observed with these two apps:

GOOGLE MEET (PROS)

  1. You can open it directly on Google Chrome browser and there’s no need for an installed app for it.
  2. The interface is simpler, therefore it’s easy to learn it by yourself.
  3. Less bandwidth is required.

ZOOM (PROS)

  1. A lot of features are present here that are not available in Google Meet, such as co-hosting and emoji reactions.
  2. Zoom has more flexibility in changing the virtual background.
  3. Zoom can possibly accommodate more participants than Google Meet.

On the other hand, here are some of my observed cons with both Google Meet and Zoom:

GOOGLE MEET (CONS)

  1. If you want to present or share a Google tab, you will need to switch tabs to navigate back to the meeting room.
  2. There are no emoji reactions apart from raise hand.
  3. There is no option to automatically record the session when the host starts the meeting.

ZOOM (CONS)

  1. If you are presenting the screen as a host, all other features will be reduced to pop-out windows which could block your view the shared presentation.
  2. It’s more complex to schedule a meeting since you need to provide a lot of details.
  3. More bandwidth is needed compared to Google Meet.

Both meeting apps are good, anyway, but your preference will depend on what feature you consider crucial for your online meeting/class.

GENERAL COMMUNITY QUARANTINE (GCQ)

Metro Manila is back to the second most relaxed lockdown/quarantine measure (MECQ), and if you have read my prior blog reflecting on the proposed ‘granular lockdown’ by the Philippine government, I said there that these quarantine classifications no longer make sense to me.

Whether there’s a strict lockdown or not, it will make no difference if vaccinations will not be expedited and mass testings will not be enforced. Either way, people are still discouraged to stay home. Even if restaurants will allow dine-ins once again, I would still rather order takeaways. Seriously, what’s the point? Anyway, I’ll just try to stay home (and stay sane lol) as much as I can.

MENTAL HEALTH CHECK

I would always practice patience, kindness, and leniency to my students in this difficult time because I don’t want to be one of the additional causes of their mental health struggles this pandemic. I am quite happy that they are also trying to do the same for me.

How’s my mental health? I don’t know how to describe it, really. I have become less anxious lately because I am slowly learning to take it one day at a time and live in the present and not worry about things that will happen beyond one year. However, I am starting to be bored and lose interest on things that became part of my routine. You see, I am a very social and outgoing person at times, and this pandemic has limited all my activities to things I could do indoors, including exercise.

I’ve been experiencing this feeling for a couple of weeks now, and it’s been affecting my productivity. Good thing, I was able to re-read James Clear’s book Atomic Habits. Even if I already know most of the cliche advices of the book, especially the compound benefits of being consistent on small habits, one thing that stuck with me the most is embracing boredom. I always find myself complaining and stopping to do something when it gets boring, from jobs to hobbies to projects, and a lot of things. But then I realized, all things I could implement that will give me inner peace are quite boring — nature, minimalism, developing habits long-term, etc.

That’s it. I just need to accept that boredom is part o the growth process, and it’s up to me on how to fight it and still try to reach my goals.

Let’s see. And I hope your mental health are okay, too!

Just rambling as usual,

Sherr

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