Free web-based timer for online virtual live Toastmasters meetings

Ever since states and countries became locked down due to the Coronavirus, Toastmasters clubs have been forced to move their meetings to an online, virtual live setting. At the George Sutton Toastmasters club, we too have adopted the online meeting system, Zoom, which has worked well for our situation.

The one problem: How do you effectively fulfill the role of Timer in a virtual live environment?

Colored Paper for Timing Toastmasters Speeches

We’ve tried everything. Green pieces of paper, then yellow, then red. Just hold them up in front of the camera eye when the stopwatch on your phone signals the timing is complete, right?

Surprisingly, only 1/3 or our club members have colored paper in their homes.

Colored Figurines for Timing Toastmasters Presentations

We’ve also tried to get more elaborate by using colored figures to indicate timing as long as you can find various objects that are green, yellow and red. A green pen, a yellow balloon, a red nose.

The problem is that individual objects are rarely the same size. So, deciphering where you are in the timing when you’re a speaker can be a challenge when inconsistent objects appear.

Changing Virtual Backgrounds for Timing Toastmasters

Then, there’s the recent craze of changing the background when the time comes. Zoom offers a nice feature where you can change the color of what they call a Virtual Background in the setting section. You have to load a green image, a yellow one, and a red one so that you have three images in your virtual background library to choose from. Then, when serving as timer, you have to carefully coordinate when to change those settings so that the right color appears at the right time.

We found a simpler solution to timing for a Toastmasters meetings.

Free Web-Based Timer for Timing Toastmasters

Watch this video.

In case this video changes over time, please go to our Resources page for the link to our most recently recommended page for a web-based timer.