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Is It Legal to Record Online Meetings? And Where Does Virtual Meeting Transcription Fit In?

Updated: Jun 28, 2022

Online meetings via video conferencing are now a standard part of every business following the pandemic. Still, some people are unsure of the legal requirements when conducting an online session, especially if they plan to record the meeting.

Fortunately, some steps can ensure that all online meetings are conducted while ensuring data can be recorded securely.

What Factors Need to Be Considered When Recording Online Meetings?

The nature of online meetings can vary depending on the industry, but two factors need to be considered in most instances: the legal requirements plus any ethical requirements. An overview of each is as follows.

The Legal Requirements for Recording Online Meetings

A business that operates locally may only need to consider the local legal requirements of recording video online. In contrast, those serving global requirements may need to consider the requirements of several territories.

Despite the confusion regarding the different legal requirements, it can be helpful to ensure that all attendees are notified of the recording, regardless of whether it is a legal requirement. This can be done via an announcement before the meeting or via the software being used, such as Skype and Zoom.

Many businesses find that transcribing the meeting helps collect data and allows for easy distribution so attendees can receive a refresher of the discussions held without bandwidth limitations being an issue.

Although there are automated options available with some virtual meeting software, the context of the discussion can become complicated, especially if there is background noise present. Using a professional ensures you have access to meeting transcriptions sooner rather than later and are formatted in a way that is easy to read.

How Long Can Organisations Keep Video Recordings of Online Meetings?

Retention is also considered to ensure that video conferencing is carried out legally. As well as the laws regarding digital media, there is also the rule of the industry to consider.

For example, video conferencing containing a patient’s medical details will be subjected to different rules from a conventional business, and retention time could vary between six to ten years.

Similarly, those wanting to retain video meetings containing legal discussions may find that data must be deleted after five years, but this again can depend on the location of the business.

The Ethical Considerations Regarding Recording Online Meetings

Given that meetings are held for multiple reasons, there can be times when ethical considerations need to be made. For example, meetings are a standard part of the complaint process, and those making an allegation may be worried about coming forward if the conversation is being recorded.

It is also essential to inform those taking part in the meeting how the information will be used. For example, will it be used internally, or will it be posted on social media? Factors like these could mean some people are not comfortable being recorded when attending a video conference.

A business should clarify why those taking part in an online meeting are being recorded, how the recording will be used, and how long the data can be retained.

An Overview of Recording Virtual Meetings

Although there are a lot of factors to consider when recording an online meeting, giving attendees clarity regarding recordings allows anyone with concerns to raise them before the meeting takes place. It also gives people the opportunity to opt out and contribute in a different way if they are uncomfortable with being recorded.

It is also advisable to structure a data retention plan that complies with online regulations and allows participants access should they wish to view the footage. Again, offering full clarity means that those in doubt are more likely to attend an online meeting.

Where Does Virtual Meeting Transcription Fit In?

Online meetings can be essential for several reasons, but this doesn’t mean that acquiring the data should be an uphill task. Enlisting the services of a professional transcription company ensures you have legible transcription within a quick time frame, and information can be sourced within seconds as opposed to hours.

The use of virtual meeting transcription is also ideal for those who were not able to attend the original meeting, as it is easy to read while containing all the discussions held, so there is no risk of a person missing out on important information.

If you want to take advantage of professional and affordable virtual meeting transcription, why not contact London Transcription to discuss your requirements in more detail.


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