"I don't need a mic"

You hear this at conferences all the time; I did on Friday.

You’re in an assembly hall. The speaker or panel wants to field questions; the moderator then recognizes an interested party. The mic jockey is coming to the speaker who brushes off the him or her saying “I don’t need the microphone.”

Yes, you do:

  1. If the event is being recorded, you need a mic to be heard.
  2. If the event is being projected on to a large screen or remote monitor, then there are people too far to hear you.
  3. Most assembly halls are noisy: some people with typical hearing will need the amplification.
  4. Even in quiet spaces, people with impaired hearing will need the amplification.

Please wait for the microphone. Oh, and keep it short.

5 Replies to “"I don't need a mic"”

  1. Agreed, Scott. I don’t think people who do this recognize how arrogant it makes them look. I think they’re scared of the mic because it does amplify mistakes as well as learned and polished words.

  2. I came across this just Friday. Rev. Buzz Thomas was speaking at the local bookstore & waived the mic in favor of his “preacher/lawyer voice” and a “more intimate talk”. Should have seen the look on his face when the hostess thrust one upon him anyway.

  3. You know you could continue the advice to say that at least 2/3rds of the people who asks questions or makes comments at a lecture should just stay seated and shut-up! Then again perhaps the same could be said of those who comment on blogs… hmmm… ouch.

  4. I had a couple of decades of operatic training – sang professionally in NYC in my earlier years … so my criteria is simple … if you haven’t trained and proven yourself to sing over a 200 piece orchestra in a professional circumstance, then you get mic’d.

    Me … sound guys hate me as I generally peg their VU meters within seconds.

  5. I was at an event once where the minister wanted to do the worship service in a Quaker style. Apparently she thought that meant speaking softly without a microphone. Having mild to moderate hearing loss, I couldn’t hear a thing. Got to spend a few moment alone with the Holy One, though.

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