topbanner_forum
  *

avatar image

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
  • October 18, 2018, 02:55 PM
  • Proudly celebrating 13 years online.
  • Donate now to become a lifetime supporting member of the site and get a non-expiring license key for all of our programs.
  • donate

Last post Author Topic: How can I blank out my laptop camera?  (Read 2788 times)

kalos

  • Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 1,681
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« on: December 09, 2017, 12:42 PM »
Hello!

I have a video interview where I have to record myself via my laptop camera. (I can use my mobile phone camera too)

However I don't want to be seen during the recording. I cannot put something on the camera to block the light, because it will be obvious. Instead, I need to blank out my camera (with grey colour as when there is no signal) or something.

Any idea how to do that?

thanks!

IainB

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 7,220
  • Slartibartfarst
    • View Profile
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2017, 09:02 PM »
Use the highly-acclaimed "Zuckerburg Security Method" - i.e., attach a piece of opaque (won't let light through) tape over the camera lens and light. It is rumoured that, if you utter a couple of profanities whilst doing this, then this action could also help to consolidate/compound the effect, thus helping to make the whole thing more effective and may even help to make you a millionaire. (Unverified sources.)

Ath

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 3,260
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2017, 03:44 AM »
Isn't the base cause for a video interview you being visible? Otherwise a (skype) chat session would have been sufficient...
A 'malfunctioning' camera, during a video interview, isn't quite a valid alibi, I presume.

ConstanceJill

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2012
  • **
  • Posts: 143
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2017, 03:53 AM »
Hi ^^

How about wearing a Guy Fawkes mask?
I don't quite understand, you state youself that you "have to record yourself", yet you don't want to be seen ?_?

4wd

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 4,977
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2017, 05:48 AM »
According to basic logic:

However I don't want to be seen during the recording.

Cannot co-exist with this:

I have a video interview where I have to record myself via my laptop camera.

Either do a video interview of yourself or don't ... simple.

kalos

  • Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 1,681
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2017, 07:21 AM »
LoL the problem is that after many interviews, I have 0% success in video interviews and 100% success in telephone interviews, so what could I do other than fake a technical issue with the camera so that they will only judge what I say and not how I look?

PS: I am not applying for modelling jobs lol

Ath

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 3,260
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2017, 10:11 AM »
Then do as many women do: clean up your face and put on (some) make-up 8)

mouser

  • First Author
  • Administrator
  • Joined in 2005
  • *****
  • Posts: 38,875
    • View Profile
    • Mouser's Software Zone on DonationCoder.com
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2017, 11:10 AM »
Probably the best thing you can do is to not give up.  Keep doing the video interviews and try your best not to worry about how you look.  Even if you keep getting rejecting you will gain practice and bravery and you will eventually persevere and find one that accepts you.  It is better to face your fears than to start a new job by creating some technical excuse.

It is far more likely that they will view your failure to get your video working as much more damaging than whatever you look like.

Better to just show them who you are and show them you are confident enough to not let that stop you.

IainB

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 7,220
  • Slartibartfarst
    • View Profile
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2017, 12:22 PM »
@kalos:
...I have 0% success in video interviews and 100% success in telephone interviews, ...
I couldn't really understand your difficulty here, but, triggered (in a good way) by the comment:
Then do as many women do: clean up your face and put on (some) make-up 8)
- I mentioned this discussion thread (above) to one of my associates - an excellent management consultant who has some experience in this area - by the name of "Mellanie" (not her real name). Mellanie said she quite understood what the problem was. She explained it to me, and certainly opened my eyes. She empathised with your problems and asked me to post the following advice, hoping that it might be of help, but wishes to withhold her real name and contact details:

Dear forum member,
How interesting to read of your situation - and how like my own experiences! I understand precisely. My sympathies, but worry not. All you need is to have faith in yourself and the good intentions of your fellow man. If you follow my example you may be able to transform your life, as I have mine:

I had almost exactly the same problem, some years ago, but solved it with a bit of lateral thinking. Best decision I ever made. I invested a lot of money in myself.
I already had good educational qualifications (e.g., including a Harvard law degree and good groundwork experience as a lawyer), but was an unattractive-looking person with some genetic deformity of the head/face and upper spine, including a wonky eye, hare lip and a cleft palate and a slight humpback. These sorts of things were thought to put some clients off, so I found myself "unwanted" and was sidelined as a back-room support lawyer and researcher, with little - if any - face-to-face client interaction, and relatively low pay.

So, I had some of the best plastic surgery a body can buy - on my top half - to transform myself into an attractive 30-something blonde woman (I use a wig for the hair) and with huge breast implants. After months of difficult surgery, gone were the wonky eye, cleft palate, hare lip and any visible hump (from the front view at least). When the scars had all healed up, I changed my name from "Frank" to "Mellanie" (not my real names as I wish to remain anonymous), and held video interviews wearing a daringly low-cut (revealing) top. The bits the interviewers saw in the video included just my front - head, shoulders and mouth-wateringly deep cleavage. Even I would sometimes feel a twinge of physical self-desire when I looked at my own upper body image in the bathroom mirror. Those surgeons (one of them was a guy who called himself Doc Hollywood) had done a superb job and really had earned their money. It was a pity that, at the time, I could only afford to have the surgery performed on the upper and front parts of my body, otherwise I might have considered going "the full wax", but I wasn't made of money like these film stars or army transgenders - and anyway, I'm not a transgender. I am a gender of convenience.

During each video interview, "Mellanie" used a speech converter to transform my voice into a mellow woman's voice suiting the image the interviewers saw on-screen. If there was any distortion, or my male voice momentarily came through at the edges a bit, then I could always vaguely mention and apologise for "audio problems on the video link at my end", or something.
The first job I bagged as Mellanie was only my second interview - the company on the first interview were not a good fit. The second interview was the opening interview with a different company for the role of a management consultant in a reputable firm of mostly male consultants. The interviewers (all men) were so spellbound with my lovely visage and voluptuous femininity during that first opening video interview that they probably didn't really take much notice of anything that I said, and hired me on the spot, without even bothering to check my references, and sent me the contract pronto by fast courier for me to accept and return - which, of course, I did!    :Thmbsup:

The first they knew that I was actually a bloke with a 6 foot 4 inches physique and a baritone voice was when I turned up in person on the first day to start work and go through induction, dressed - and looking the part - as an attractive young woman with muscular, hairy legs, and declaring myself (dishonestly) to be of feminine gender and a transvestite/transgender.
Of course, they could do nothing. As a  lawyer, I knew that I was Untouchable. I had a job for life, if I wanted, as my disadvantaged minority status meant that I could not be sacked, and in any event, I knew from my research that they were already having difficulty keeping up with their minority diversity employment quotas, and I could help them fill three critical spots - feminine gender, transgender, and physically disabled/disadvantaged (the humpback). They knew that it would have been professionally suicidal and unacceptably politically incorrect to make even a mention of my transgender status or the fact that they suspected that I did not have a female pudenda, or give even a hint of an objection to me - that would have been bigoted victimisation of a transgender at least, which by then was almost a capital offence in some States.

Yup, I had them over a barrel from day one, and they knew it. If they were smart (and they were), they knew that if they gave me any strife, then - just by lifting my little finger - I could put them in a world of legal pain and punitive damages into the millions of dollars - e.g., if they even dared to mention or object that I was not a "real female" as they had thought, or tried to squeeze me out with harassment, sidelining, or low pay-rises. They had to use me in top client face-to-face interactions in order to get some payback for the high salary I commanded. It was all really developmental experience for me - which was what I had wanted. I was on the gravy train for life.

I have successfully used this strategy for going on 10 years, moving jobs easily and being promoted from strength to strength, always for a much larger salary and pension each time. The strategy has helped me secure directorships of several self-styled "diversity" companies, as well as turned me into a rather capable professional management consultant. I work hard and enjoy my work immensely.

Each employer gives me the most glowing references a body could ever wish for, because they have to and because they very badly want to. Only by ensuring that they help me to go to a satisfactory (to me) and more highly-paid job can they get rid of me and relieve themselves of the burden that I represent and of the perpetual unspoken threat of litigation for gender and disability discrimination. By doing this, they hope to make me SEP ("Somebody Else's Problem") - though, to be fair to myself, I always do a good job, performance-wise, wherever I am, so it's decidedly not as though I don't earn my keep or am incompetent or can't deliver at the level that I have been promoted to (à la the Peter principle). Of course, though, for the majority, performance reviews are a sick kind of demeaning and hypocritical corporate lottery/fraud with absolutely no basis in statistical veracity, it is automatic in my case that my performance reviews always place me in the upper decile for salary and pay rises. That salary history of constant pay-rises of course serves to reflect and is consistent and compatible with and supports the veracity of my glowing references - which are so necessary for the company to expedite my moving on to the next job. In prudently looking after their best corporate interests, the company effectively have my best interests as a vitally necessary target.

The world can be one's oyster.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2017, 04:12 PM by IainB »

Target

  • Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,681
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2017, 03:15 PM »
yeah, those HUGE BREAST IMPLANTS are sure to do the trick...

kalos

  • Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 1,681
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2017, 03:22 PM »
The only video interview I passed, was one that was a genuine technical issue and my camera blanked out and didn't properly record image.
The company told me that 'there was an issue with your camera but that's fine you passed that stage'

IainB

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 7,220
  • Slartibartfarst
    • View Profile
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2017, 04:30 PM »
@Target:
yeah, those HUGE BREAST IMPLANTS are sure to do the trick...
That's very perceptive of you. Many people probably might not initially appreciate the importance and effectiveness of those implants. The implants could arguably be vastly more effective than merely cleaning one's face and putting some makeup on, in any event. Putting bigger headlamps on a car always cuts deeper into the gloom and makes the vehicle more visible, but a paint-job? Nah, not so much. Rabbits are also more easily transfixed by bigger headlamps.

Shades

  • Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 2,384
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2017, 04:56 PM »
Not every country operates under the same rules, regulations or even considerations. Now I can imagine that a video interview is done to see how the person to be interviewed presents him- or herself to the outer world. But also to have a look at the demeanor of that person when in conversation and being questioned. Without knowing the function of this interview it is kinda hard to say whether a video interview is necessary or even desirable.

Some of the advice from "melanie" isn't bad. Investing in your outside appearance can certainly be a good thing for a function where such a thing is appreciated. Mainly because when you have done so, it will bring more confidence to the table. In my (limited) experience with person-to-person interviews it really is a good thing if you can present a workable solution, which you are confident in completing, to a question on how you would solve a problem the interviewer throws at you. When you can do so, you don't need to be the best looking person, but you must be presentable and show effort if you are in contact with customers.

"Big headlights", even for someone like me in a family where females have a (natural) cup size that starts with G, I don't get why it remains very hard not to look. Problems with practicality, health (back pains) and paying huge sums for proper support, that is what I remember from childhood. While not based on first hand experience, my head knows that such "headlights" are no blessing at all. So the suggestion to get "plastic" versions of those...yeah, that doesn't resonate at all with me.

** Edit ** added last paragraph.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2017, 05:21 PM by Shades »

cranioscopical

  • Friend of the Site
  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 4,658
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2017, 05:16 PM »
What's the matter with all of you?

Never heard of glove puppets?


4wd

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 4,977
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2017, 07:03 PM »
TBH, sounds more like a personal introduction on a dating site rather than an actual interview.

In which case huge breast implants could be beneficial.

@cranio: Good idea, that way you can have both interviewer and interviewee on cam at once.

Target

  • Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,681
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2017, 07:08 PM »
What's the matter with all of you?

Never heard of glove puppets?
-cranioscopical (December 10, 2017, 05:16 PM)

and we're back to implants...

cranioscopical

  • Friend of the Site
  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 4,658
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2017, 09:06 PM »
What's the matter with all of you?

Never heard of glove puppets?
-cranioscopical (December 10, 2017, 05:16 PM)

and we're back to implants...

Busted!


Target

  • Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,681
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2017, 10:22 PM »
gotta say reading through this thread it sounds an awful lot like we're pimping for Kalos  :o

IainB

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 7,220
  • Slartibartfarst
    • View Profile
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #18 on: December 11, 2017, 07:22 AM »
Busted!
-cranioscopical (December 10, 2017, 09:06 PM)
Oh. Ahaha! Scanning the thread, I had missed that suggestion/interpretation in the banter, first time around. Probably wasn't expecting it. And now, it seems, a pun. Intentional or otherwise, the effect is very droll.    :D

But it also could illustrate a point about the rationale and need for face-to-face discussion or video interviews. The nuances of a lot of speech can often be better communicated if/when delivered "in person".
Narrated in a story, what was said - and the accompanying cues - might be described something like, for example:
"Oh well, you could try such-and such, you know." he said, looking at me with an amused twinkle in his eye.
- which, in a phone discussion or a forum text discussion might come out merely as "You could try such-and such, you know", which doesn't really make obvious any of those associated cues. So the communication "fails" to the extent that the nuance is lost in transmission.

This reminds me of something:
Before letting us loose as lecturers, me and the newly-formed group of colleagues I was part of were first sent away on an intensive, live-in 2-week immersion training course on training techniques, held at a prestigious executive training school nestled away in the Buckinghamshire countryside. It can't have been cheap, and they pushed us (the group) hard, so it was not an easy free ride:
  • At the start, we were told what the training objectives were - what we would be learning and would be taking away from this course.
  • Then we were told to prepare a 5-minute presentation on a subject of our choice (each of us were specialists in a different area), list the objectives - what we wanted the lecture to achieve in terms of learning/understanding, and then we were each video'd delivering the lecture, using supporting visual aids. The videos were made and then tucked away for future reference.
  • For the next few days, we were taken through the theory, methods and practice in subjects necessary to enable us to maximise our understanding and effectiveness in lecturing as a communications and training delivery method.
  • Then we were told to use this new knowledge to prepare for another 5-minute lecture, to be video'd, and that these videos were to be scrutinised, discussed and critiqued by us (the group of trainees and the leading trainer).
  • The critique session was humbling, and at times ego-bruising, but - since we trainees were all in the same boat - whilst we did not pull any punches, we had the good sense to be fair to one another. The critique focused mainly on the effectiveness of delivery and the relative achievement of objectives, rather than the content of the lecture per se, except where content was felt to be insufficient or superfluous.
  • Then we had to prepare for a 2nd lecture on the same topic, then critique, wash, rinse and repeat.
  • Then we had to prepare for a 3rd lecture on the same topic, then critique, wash, rinse and repeat.
  • Then we had to prepare for a 4th lecture on the same topic, then critique, wash, rinse and repeat.
  • By the 4th lecture, we had all got the idea and learned the process, and our lectures were very good and came out with  5 stars at the critique (objectives met).
  • At this point, we were asked if we would like to share a viewing of our first video'd lecture from the very start of the course, and discuss and assess whether we had achieved the objectives of the course as originally given. Since we had all learned to become pretty thick-skinned during the critique sessions, we agreed to risk exposeing ourselves this time, again. And what we saw was how each of us had improved dramatically and the extent to which the objectives of the course had been met.
  • In the remainder of the course, we focused on practice - giving and honing a 20-minute lecture on a subject in our field of specialty.
  • By the end of the course, all objectives of the training had been categorically met, and we were safe to let loose as lecturers, with some well-honed techniques of presentation already learned and in place.

The above could be relevant to preparing for video interviews, or other meetings face-to-face, or presentations to groups. They are all very much the same thing - the communication of ideas.
Trying to hide oneself from that communication is not going to really help where the objective should arguably probably be to master the techniques of communication, so that one can relax and communicate in the most effective manner one sees available in any given environment or situation.**
Just because one had previously succeeded in getting a job in a video interview where the video was duff, and succeeded in phone interviews, but then failed in a single video interview where the video was working OK, does not necessarily mean, of itself, that ipso facto the video was the cause of failure. There would seem to be no statistical basis for arriving at that conclusion and it would thus seem to be a non sequitur (i.e., it does not follow).

There is often a natural shyness, an imagined and inhibiting fear of personal risk inherent in our communications with complete strangers, and it can inhibit us to the extent that it literally cripples us - inhibits our ability to perform successfully in what might otherwise be normal/necessary human interactions in everyday life or the carrying-out of our daily work. There is also a fear of potential failure in some cases - for example, as experienced by sales people making cold calls. This can lead to avoidance of risk by withdrawal. The alternative is to confront the fear, overcome it and do it anyway, and one of the most common ways of achieving this is through preparation and then repeated practice/drills - as in the training techniques described above, and as in many sales training courses.

Note:
** There are books written on the subject of "Thinking on your feet", and even courses of training (I once attended such a course and found it invaluable). They can transform one's realisation (for the better) as to what one is capable of. Anyone can learn these techniques, if they can accept the risk of having to develop and change/improve their skillset. Similarly, anyone can practice and learn to use critical thinking skills, if they can accept the very real risk to the ego of having to develop and change/improve their thinking skills.
The challenge of effectively and constructively interacting and communicating with others, and of effectively and constructively thinking about those communications - and about solving Life's problems in general - are endemic in our society and lives.
Nobody is born with the skills necessary to be an effective communicator, or the skills necessary to be an effective critical thinker. These are learned skills - acquired through learning - like riding a bike, or swimming, or typing. Yet many of us seem to go through life ignorant of the need to develop such skills if we wish to make our lives more fulfilling/improved. Yet we somehow accept being (say) "two-fingered typists", or "two-fingered thinkers".
Why is that? Who/what is inhibiting our self-development, preventing us from learning/acquiring new skills?
So-called "education" on its own will not necessary be sufficient, of itself, except where that education includes the teaching, development and behavioural practice of effective habits of communications and thinking skills (De Bono and CoRT).

Stoic Joker

  • Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 6,470
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #19 on: December 11, 2017, 03:06 PM »
Just put a piece of that lightly frosted scotch tape over the lens. It will still show as video, but appear badly out of focus ... Emulating an "equipment issue".  :D

IainB

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 7,220
  • Slartibartfarst
    • View Profile
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #20 on: December 11, 2017, 03:28 PM »
Just put a piece of that lightly frosted scotch tape over the lens. It will still show as video, but appear badly out of focus ... Emulating an "equipment issue".  :D
You're so transparent.

cranioscopical

  • Friend of the Site
  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 4,658
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #21 on: December 11, 2017, 07:48 PM »
You're so transparent.
Though not entirely lucid.

Target

  • Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,681
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2017, 11:00 PM »
Just put a piece of that lightly frosted scotch tape over the lens. It will still show as video, but appear badly out of focus ... Emulating an "equipment issue".  :D

then how will they appreciate those HUGE BREAST IMPLANTS?

IainB

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 7,220
  • Slartibartfarst
    • View Profile
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #23 on: December 12, 2017, 03:41 AM »
You're so transparent.
Though not entirely lucid.
-cranioscopical (December 11, 2017, 07:48 PM)
That's clearly obvious.

IainB

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 7,220
  • Slartibartfarst
    • View Profile
    • Read more about this member.
    • Donate to Member
Re: How can I blank out my laptop camera?
« Reply #24 on: December 12, 2017, 03:42 AM »
Just put a piece of that lightly frosted scotch tape over the lens. It will still show as video, but appear badly out of focus ... Emulating an "equipment issue".  :D

then how will they appreciate those HUGE BREAST IMPLANTS?
I'm glad someone is keeping abreast of the main thrust of this discussion.