WebEx is Brussel Sprouts to me


I produced two WebEx Training Center sessions this week. It had been a while.

I remember it was the very first LMS integration I worked on back in 2004 or 2005. WebEx and SumTotal LMS, or was it still Docent? The details grow hazy over time. What I do remember is that even though WebEx was a step up from the finicky and limited HP Virtual Classroom that we were using at work before then, it still left a lot to be desired. It just kinda seemed like they hadn’t finished inventing it yet.

In 2020 I’m sorry to report that WebEx is just as poorly designed as it was 15 years ago.

So much so that I don’t want to use it ever again. I mean, yeah guess I will if you make me, if there’s nothing else around. Just like brussel sprouts. I really don’t like WebEx and will go very far out of my way to avoid even the smell of it from now on.

The audio is just painful, the layouts are jolting and ineffective, the navigation is not anti-intuitive, the support documentation is based on functions not workflows, and as a producer with the host role, I still do not have the needed access to produce.

Here’s what I do need to produce:
  • full functionality to troubleshoot issues, without revoking the presentation from the Presenter
    • all breakouts
    • all polls
    • all chat
    • all participants
    • all audio/video controls
  • a persistent view of all participants, no matter how many, that I can sort based on any of the headers (audio type, name, check/hand status)
  • a way to reconcile attendees and attendee roster (names are not the same)
  • a way to manually detect & merge multiple instances of the same user
  • consistent functionality & panel layout regardless of screenshare or breakout status

The simple fact that if any panelist mutes someone once, that that person can never unmute themselves again is simply unacceptable. Other platforms manage this fine, if WebEx can’t figure this much out they don’t deserve the pleasure of customers, IMHO.

Without substantial overhaul, this product is irredeemable and frankly I don’t want to put up with it. Please don’t make me. Please don’t make anyone!

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