Dear WCSA21 participant, 

Below we have included some guiding principles for this using the ZOOM platform during the WCSA21 virtual conference. Outside of these basic terms of engagement we remind all participants and attendees that WCSA is a social justice-based organisation with a powerful commitment to ensuring that all participants in its events are equally welcomed and supported. WCSA has long served as an important place where young activists, junior colleagues, creatives and independent scholars have found a welcoming place to share work and receive both feedback and encouragement from more established members. Cultivating this ethos and maintaining that tradition by active and engaged participation is even more vital this year. We advise all attendees that we will remove anyone who engages in behavior that demeans, humiliates, or threatens another person(s) based on race, religion, gender, nationality, gender expression, sexual orientation, disability, age, immigration status, or other group affiliation. Harassment includes but is not limited to offensive comments, slurs, jokes, materials, or gestures based on group affiliation that have the effect of creating a hostile or intimidating environment. If you feel that you have been the target of such behaviour during the conference please inform a member of the organising committee by emailing

Guidelines for using ZOOM: 

If you are unfamiliar with the zoom platform we recommend opening the application on your desktop and clicking the orange ‘new meeting’ icon. This will start a meeting where you can familiarise yourself with zoom features in preparation for WCSA21. Here are some guidelines for using zoom during the event: 

Basic guidelines: 

● To help keep background noise to a minimum, make sure you mute your microphone when you are not speaking. 


● Position your camera properly being mindful of lighting 


● Limit distractions - you can make it easier to focus on the meeting by turning off notifications, closing or minimizing running apps, and muting your smartphone.


● Try not to use the chat function during presentations (unless very urgent) as it 

can take focus away from the person presenting - your chair will let you know when to engage with the chat function. 


● To create a sense of community and feel like we are with each other, we have opted to schedule standard ZOOM sessions. We’ve decided to choose this format so that participants can see people in the audience and feel a sense of community. As such we encourage audience members to keep videos on, because speaking to digital rooms of empty black Zoom squares can be disheartening.


● Naming/Renaming one’s self: Your name is visible to all participants. If you need to rename yourself, follow the directions here


● Recordings: For security purposes we request that no presentations be recorded or shared. 


● Prepare materials in advance - If you will be sharing content during the meeting, make sure you have the files and/or links ready to go before the meeting begins.

To share your slides follow these steps: 


Before you start the zoom meeting ensure that your powerpoint is open on your desktop. Once you are in the zoom meeting 


1. Click the button that says 'share screen' at the bottom of the screen (it will usually be lit up in green and be in the middle of the screen at the bottom) 


2. When you click this button a new pop-up menu will appear with an option to choose what you would like to share. If your powerpoint is open on your computer it will be visible to you and you can click on it. 


3. When you have clicked on the powerpoint then you will have to also click on the blue 'Share' button on the bottom right of the pop-up menu. 


4. Now you are screen sharing and will be able to navigate through your powerpoint as normal. 


5. When your presentation is finished please click the 'Stop Share' button at the very top centre of the screen. You may have to move your mouse cursor toward the top of the screen to access the ‘stop share’ function. 

If you are unfamiliar with this technology we recommend starting a zoom meeting on your own computer and practicing sharing your slides and also stopping the shared screen. 

Time Management Etiquette: 

Most panels are 1 hour, 45 minutes long. We request that time is equitably distributed and managed by panel chairs in order to leave time for a Question and Answer passage at the end. For panels with three presenters, we request presentations of no more than 20 minutes. For panels of four, we request presentations of no more than 15 minutes. 

Guidelines for Panel Chairs/Moderators: 

● Each panel has a designated chair whose main tasks are to create the Zoom link; manage time; and mind the chat and audience during presentations. Feel free to ask for people to use the ‘raise hand’ function, put questions in the chat or simply turn on their mic and ask a question - it is up to you as chair to decide what makes most sense.


● We would like panel chairs to allow for some time, either at the beginning or before each paper, for presenters to introduce themselves. 


● Panel chairs can elect to designate another panelist as a co-host at the beginning of the session in case of tech failure. Directions for enabling a co-host and creating one during a Zoom session can be found here


● Chairs should also be sure to give panelists screen-sharing privileges. Instructions for making this option available as well as basic share screen tools and menu options can be found here


● Zoom security and ‘Zoom bombing’ is an unfortunate reality. Zoom meetings are not necessarily secure places and can be hijacked by unwanted, disruptive intruders and trolls. Panel chairs have the ability to remove people from the call who prove to be continually disruptive and unruly. Directions for removing participants and reporting troll accounts can be found here


We want to encourage everyone who has registered to do their best to attend as many sessions as possible. The 2021 conference is built on the foundation of the cancelled 2020 WCSA conference originally scheduled to be held at Youngstown State University, and as such the June 2021 conference represents two years of hard work amidst a pandemic and global disruption. However, despite the affordances of Zoom--it allows more participation from around the world in an equitable manner assuming technological access--we are also cognizant that many of us have been experiencing Zoom fatigue for months. We are intimately aware that our conference is competing with the demands of your daily lives, too. Therefore, whilst we request that all participants attend early and often, to show up, listen, and participate in conversations, we also encourage everyone to take the time to practice self-care. 


In the spirit of making the labour of our members visible we would like to thank the following people for their hard work in bringing this event to us: 


● The 2020 conference organizers: Tim Francisco, Alicia Prieto Langarica, Brian Bonhomme, AJ Summel, Dawna Cerney, Diana Palardy, J. Dana Sperry, Lillian Lewis, Jacob Ari Labenz, Dolores Cisco, and Donna DeBlasio, and Sarah Lowry; 


● the 2021 conference organizers: Tim Francisco, Joe Varga, Emma Penney, and Nathaniel Heggins Bryant; 


● Our incredible website designer and digital artist, Áine O’Hara 


● Martha Pallante and the Darling Endowment in History, who are sponsoring the reception that follows the live event at the Youngstown Historical Center of Industry and Labor;


● Marcelle Wilson, curator/manager of The Youngstown Historical Center for Industry and Labor, for support and ideas for both the 2020 and 2021 conference efforts; 


● and finally the many people that we have recently requested to serve as 2021 panel chairs--too many of them to name here! 


Thanks and see you soon! 


The WCSA21 Organising Committee