• The tool, created by Pickswise ahead of March Madness, clips onto your laptop and fakes your presence in a virtual meeting.
  • One third of fans admit that March Madness decreases their productivity levels during work, with 56% of millennials willing to miss a work deadline because of the tournament.
  • Three top tactics have been highlighted which allows fans to watch all the action unfold whilst ‘working’, meaning you never have to miss a dunk again.

It’s nearly here! Basketball mania is soon to take over our TV screens (and our daily lives) as March Madness kicks off on the 18th March 2021.

It has been discovered that 2.5 million people per day follow all the Madness whilst at work, with the average worker watching six hours of it throughout the tournament4. This ultimately results in more than 8 million hours spent watching games during the workday.

With virtual working still being the norm for many of us, Pickswise have released a cheeky little tool to get you away from virtual meetings and back to watching the game….all without your boss ever finding out.

The tool titled ‘the virtual call escape’ is a unique product which clips onto the top of any laptop. The tool has two vertical arms placed in front of your laptop screen which allows the user to place an image of themselves perfectly in line with their webcam. This image then gives the appearance of being in a virtual meeting, when actually you’re enjoying the hoops and chilling out with a cold one!

The product seen below can be purchased from https://www.pickswise.com/how-to-enjoy-march-madness-without-your-boss-finding-out/

If, however, you can’t purchase the tool, fear not! Pickswise have also outlined three top tactics for watching the action unfold during Zoom meetings:

Create a looping Zoom background

With a repeating recording of yourself ready to engage in your place after the opening pleasantries, you can audaciously slope off to enjoy March Madness. This one requires a little prior preparation, but, if applied correctly, you’ll reap the benefits of an uninterrupted session in front of the game.

How to record your video on Zoom

  • Load Zoom prior to your meeting and open your profile settings tab.
  • Navigate to the recording area. From here, make sure 3rd party editing is enabled and take note of where the recording will be saved on your computer. Confirm.
  • Exit this area and click new meeting. Position yourself as you would any other meeting and press record at the bottom of your screen.
  • Let your screen record for 5-10 seconds, ensuring you don’t make any sudden movements (you might think an aggressive head nod will stand you in good stead, but it will look odd and suspicious after a few loops). When you’re happy, click stop recording. Your video is now ready to use.
  • Once your meeting begins, open the backgrounds and filters tab and click the option that allows you to add a new background. Choose to add a video and find the clip you have just recorded. You can engage in the hellos and how are yous before loading your looping background.

Watch the game from your computer

One of the simplest ways of appearing apparently focused during a big game is to simply load the stream through your computer. This avoids having to conjure a duplicate of yourself as in the previous tip.

Log into your sports streaming account and line up the game, making sure to keep the open tab towards the top of your screen so that it aligns nicely with your camera. Et voila, you can watch the game without even leaving your office.

Fake a convenient connection malfunction

The final ruse is the failsafe route of feigning a failing internet connection. In eager spirits, begin the call by highlighting just how beneficial you find these virtual meetings during the testing, antisocial climate: ‘It’s just great seeing everyone’s faces, even if it is just over video call!’

But then, your preorganized tragedy strikes. You frustratedly flail as you exclaim how your connection keeps freezing. Apologizing profusely, you ignore your reassuring colleagues and decide the clear course of action should be to turn off your camera, in the hope that it sures up your connection. Making your audio presence clear, your co-workers will confirm they can hear you. And scene.