The Clog’s power ranking of Zoom backgrounds

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With spring break behind us now, we should all be getting back into the swing of school and getting used to having our classes held online over Zoom — the new normal. At this point, you’ve probably at least seen a few people use a virtual background on Zoom, and maybe you’ve even tried it out yourself. If you haven’t figured out how to do it, here are some hints: Click the “up” arrow next to the “video” button and select “choose virtual background.” We at the Clog have seen some pretty good choices in the past few weeks, so we created this power ranking of Zoom backgrounds in honor of those creative Golden Bears.

5. The backgrounds that come with Zoom

Starting with the most basic, we have the backgrounds that come with the Zoom app. While the person who uses this background put in the effort to find a virtual background — which we certainly appreciate — they didn’t go far enough to upload their own image. For now, they’ll be chilling in outer space or on the beach.

4. An image from your computer

Whether it’s a picture of a nice sunset or the Campanile that you took or found on Google, these backgrounds show a little more effort than the built-in ones.

3. Memes of any type

Yes, some will be better than others, but any memes used as backgrounds are a definite step-up due to the fact that they demonstrate an effort to make your classmates laugh. The only downside of this one is the potential for part of the joke to get cut off by the placement of your body.

2. “Blackmail” photos of your friends in the class

Professors and GSIs may not be crazy about this one, but putting up a not-so-flattering photo of your friend who’s in the class is a good way to keep them on their toes and low-key embarrass them in front of the rest of your classmates. (Only do this to your closest friends if they’re cool with it, of course.)

1. Screenshots of the class on “gallery view”

This Zoom background was by far the most confusing but also the funniest one we’ve seen so far. The student put the class on “gallery view,” which allows you to see everyone in the class at once, took a screenshot of this, cropped it and used it as their background. Enough said here.

Regardless of which one you choose to use, virtual backgrounds are a great way to provide entertainment for your classmates, spice up your routine and, most importantly, to hide the fact that you’re calling into your class from your bed!

Contact Beatrice Aronson at [email protected].