Switching off the camera can combat Zoom fatigue, research says

A new study conducted by a researcher from the University of Arizona suggests that having the camera on during a video meeting could be partially to blame for Zoom fatigue.

Allison Gabriel’s research looks at how the camera plays a part in employee fatigue and explores whether these feelings are worse for certain people.

In a report, she said: “There’s always this assumption that if you have your camera on during meetings, you are going to be more engaged. But there’s also a lot of self-presentation pressure associated with being on camera. Having a professional background and looking ready, or keeping children out of the room are among some of the pressures.” 

Back in April, HiddenWires reported that another study, conducted by Stanford University, found that women suffer the most from videocall exhaustion and that the self-view display could be to blame. 

Gabriel’s study consisted of a four-week experiment with 103 participants and over 1,400 observations. The research found that the people with the camera switched on reported more fatigue than those with cameras switched off.

“And that fatigue correlated to less voice and less engagement during meetings,” added Gabriel. “So, in reality, those who had cameras on were potentially participating less than those not using cameras. This counters the conventional wisdom that cameras are required to be engaged in virtual meetings.”

Like the Stanford University study, Gabriel’s research also concluded that these effects were felt more in women than men, as well as those employees newer to the company.

Image credit: fizkes/Shutterstock.com


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