Skip to main content Skip to main content

The show must stream on

Learn about the differences between meetings and live events in Microsoft Teams.

By David Sharman

May 28, 2020

Overhead image of man using a laptop computer, words Technically SpeakingThe virtual work environment has become familiar to millions in the past three months. Metropolitan State University of Denver took all classes fully online March 30, and transitioning to exclusively digital communications quickly became the norm. Resources such as Microsoft Teams that used to bridge the distance between campus buildings now keep us connected in a much greater geographic range.

By now, most MSU Denver employees have participated in a scheduled Teams meeting or Teams group chat. Teams meetings are collaborative events where all attendees can participate in the conversation. Teams live events, however, are a more exclusive, presentation-formatted large-scale conferencing option with their own fundamentals and best practices.

A Teams live event is similar to a Teams meeting in design but is tailored to support 10,000 attendees and 250 presenters (only the last 10 presenters appear on screen). Attendees can hear and view the event but cannot send their microphone or camera feed. Many live-event features and options are designed around a single presenting model (one person on screen at a time) with panel and group presentations in mind. These include options for content-sharing featuring a side-by-side layout with an active speaker; a live Q&A for all attendees with private and public response options; and a private “event chat” available to producers and presenters.

As with many webinar formats, all presenters should mind their “mute” button as a matter of etiquette; most of us are familiar with interruptions during webinars, with rogue background commentary of barking dogs and flushing toilets. Best practice is to stay muted until you are presenting or have something to say. Conversely, all presenters should leave their cameras active during the meeting to allow the event producer to show the active speaker at any moment.

Information Technology Services has enabled non-MSU Denver clients to be invited into University Teams live events. If you are an event organizer and would like to include non-MSU Denver attendees or presenters in your live event, please contact the ITS Service Desk (not necessary for public Teams live events).

Step-by-step guides and additional resources on creating and operating a Teams live event are available at

If you would like one-on-one support for Teams meetings or live events, or if you have any questions or concerns, please contact the ITS Service Desk at 303-352-7548 or or email from your MSU Denver email account.

David Sharman specializes in video and event production and livestreaming design and support. He works as a learning-spaces specialist for ITS.

Topics: Best practices, ITS, Technically Speaking, Technology

Edit this page