As we approach summer time’s warm weather, the vaccination rate grows, and Covid (hopefully) becomes a thing of the past, Zoom might feel like an ancient relic. While accidental unmuted remarks might still happen, we’re long past the days of forgetting how to login to calls, not understanding how to turn on our cameras, and not being able to find the chat. Still, I have a feeling that Zoom will be around for a while, and I’m excited that meetings which used to take up whole afternoons may be able to be done in an hour from the comfort of home or the office. While some people may complain about zoom meetings and others may love them, I think everyone can agree that they hate hearing these phrases.

“We all wish we could be in person”


Frankly, a lot of us don’t. Early on, this was a little more acceptable. I definitely missed seeing friends, colleagues, and others in person. At this point, while I wish some things were in person, I don’t mind taking calls from home in my slippers and pajama pants.

“Can you hear me”


I don’t think I’ve started a one on one zoom meeting without someone uttering this phrase. Honestly, sometimes it's necessary when the connection is bad, but that doesn’t make it less annoying. The worst is when someone starts speaking, and then interrupts themselves to check that everyone is hearing them. We’ll let you know if there is a problem.

“Crazy world out there”

Credit: ABC

This was a classic dad phrase early on in the pandemic. It’s one of those phrases that would start every passing conversation when dads were out for their nightly walk. I’m not sure why this one is annoying, but it just is.

“During these unprecedented times”

I don’t even need to explain why this one gets on everyone’s nerves. This is a favorite phrase of every cleaning supply company commercial, radio ad, and facetime with grandma. Do we really need to hear it on Zoom, too?

“Oops, I thought I was unmuted”


I’m sure it's happened to everyone at some point, and the classic accidental mute is nothing to be ashamed of, but how hard is it to click the microphone before you start to speak. We’re over a year into this thing now - let’s remember to unmute before we speak.  

“I’ve got to hop on another call”

This is annoying because you can always predict the person who’s going to say they have to run, and they always say it when you’re trying to get something done. I guess the world is getting busier now, so they probably do have somewhere to be, but don’t say you’re available for a call if you’re only around for 10 minutes.

“Can you see my screen?”

Honestly, I think this one is kind of on Zoom. I’m never quite sure that I’ve shared my screen the right way. The green box does a decent job, but its still not clear enough. And, while we’re on the topic, you should not need to check an extra box to share sound - that’s way too many steps.

“I'm starting to get used to this zoom thing! Hah!”


This is a classic from an old professor, boss, or maybe your Aunt. It inevitably always comes right before they mess something else up.

“Would you mind turning your camera on for me”

One of the benefits of the virtual world is that you can take calls from your bed, not worry about dressing up, and if necessary, can do two things at once. For important meetings, you should 100% have your camera on. But do we really need to show our face for check in meetings with dozens of other people?


The absolute worst thing to hear on Zoom is nothing. Yes, it's always great if a meeting you weren’t excited for gets cancelled, but there is nothing worse than hopping on a zoom call to find no one on the other end. Does the “wait 15 minutes and leave” rule from high school substitute teachers apply here?

I can’t predict the future, but whether Zoom calls are a temporary fix or a permanent staple, I hope these phrases are retired pretty soon.