How to Video Chat

This year has created a new normal for relationships, requiring friends and family to learn how to keep in touch from a distance. While technology can be a useful solution, it can also be challenging to understand and use safely.

The MNC board has found a secure, free tool that can help you do this. The product is called Jitsi Meet. Our board (with over 40 years combined experience in IT) recommends it for the following reasons:

  • Cost: Jitsi Meet is free 
  • Safety: Jitsi Meet does not sell your data and is publicly maintained by the community
  • Ease: Jitsi Meet can be used in one click from a web browser or mobile app, and the app downloads in seconds
  • Convenience: Jitsi Meet provides stable and high-quality video chat on any device, built on web standards

We share this only as a community service; none of us have any connection in any way to the product. We hope you enjoy.

Click here for more information about Jitsi Meet.

These steps will get you up and running with Jitsi Meet, enabling you to create a video chat meeting and share it with those closest to you.


Creating a new meeting

If you would like to start a video chat with your friends and family, these quick steps will get the meeting set up.

1. Open the website meet.jit.si in a web browser on your device

Jitsi Meet can be used on a computer or a mobile device. If you would like to video chat, be sure that your device has a camera enabled.

Step 1: The website at meet.jit.si

2. Enter the name of the video chat meeting

You can create the meeting name in the “Start a new meeting” box, or just use the pre-filled name.

The name of the video chat meeting is meant to be long and hard to guess. This will keep uninvited people from joining your meeting.

Step 2: The meeting name input showing an example name

3. Click “Go” to activate your new meeting

On a computer, this will immediately bring you into your video chat meeting.

Step 3: The meeting name input showing the “Go” button

4. If you are on a mobile device, download or open the Jitsi Meet app

The Jitsi Meet website will ask you to download or open the Jitsi Meet app, as seen in the screenshot below. Clicking “Download the app” will bring you to your phone’s app store, where the Jitsi Meet app can be installed. Once it is installed, you can click “Continue to the app” to open the video chat meeting.

Step 4: The mobile device page showing options to download or open the Jitsi Meet app

Inviting others to your meeting

Once your meeting has been created, it is time to invite friends and family. These steps will demonstrate how to access the invitation tools in Jitsi Meet.

1. Make sure that you are currently in a Jitsi Meet meeting

The best way to invite friends and family is to enter the video chat yourself first, then send links to the meeting.

Step 1: The Jitsi Meet page on a computer

2. Open the sharing panel

On a computer, click the “i” icon in the lower-right corner.

On a mobile device, click the “Invite others” button just above the control buttons.

Step 2: The Jitsi Meet sharing panel icon on a computer
Step 2: The Jitsi Meet sharing panel icon on a mobile device

3. Send the meeting link to friends and family

On a computer, clicking the “copy” link (see below) will copy all of the meeting details. Those details can then be pasted into an email or other chat program.

On a mobile device, clicking the “Invite other” button will bring up the device’s sharing panel. From that panel you can forward the details from the app of your choosing, or copy the link to share it manually.

Step 3: The Jitsi Meet sharing dialog on a computer, with the copy buttons highlighted

4. Have your friends and family join the meeting

Once your invitees have received their link, they simply need to click the link to open Jitsi Meet. On a mobile device, they will need to install the Jitsi Meet app from their app store prior to opening. See step #4 under “Creating a new meeting” for more details.