University to require consent for Zoom recordings


Due to privacy concerns, the University of Utah will adjust campus-wide Zoom meeting functions.

Starting March 15, the Zoom software’s built-in consent to recording feature will be activated. That means all members of the campus community will be asked to consent when Zoom meetings are recorded.

The change will impact interactive video gatherings, including everything from staff meetings to university lecture courses. For meetings where only the presenters are able to broadcast video, just those presenting will be required to consent. But meetings where all participants can interact—for example, during classroom lectures or department meetings—each participant must consent to be recorded in order to continue in the meeting.

“Many of our digital learning technologies, including Zoom, constantly update their platforms and tweak the user experience. Best practice for institutional use of Zoom now includes informing and documenting consent from participants in recorded events,” said Deborah Keyek-Franssen, associate vice president and dean of Continuing and Online Education. “By utilizing the simple ‘click to consent’ feature, we can efficiently align with that best practice.”

Students in recorded class sessions will have three options:

  1. Consent to be recorded with their camera on and their name on the screen
  2. Consent to be recorded with their camera off and name appearing on the recording
  3. Deny the request for consent, leave the session, and watch the recording later

Students also will be reminded of best practices during recorded lectures, noted Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies Amy Bergerson, including not taking pictures of their peers or screengrabs of class chats and then posting them on social media.

“One of the benefits of attending the University of Utah is belonging to a vibrant academic community where ideas and concepts are shared, discussed, and learned,” Bergerson said. “As members of this community, we ask that students honor the privacy of their instructors and classmates within our various learning environments.”

In a typical spring semester week, the U connects around 25,260 Zoom sessions with more than 213,000 participants.