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‘I’m not a cat’: You have to see this Zoom filter mishap

Here’s the top tech tip for today: Turn off any funny filters before appearing in court. Otherwise, you might wind up like Rod Ponton, a lawyer who came into the digital courtroom with a Zoom filter on. He popped up on the screen as an adorable kitten.

“I’m here live. I’m not a cat,” Ponton said as his large cat eyes frantically searched around his screen. “I don’t know how to remove it!”

This is something you have to see to believe.

Ponton later told Motherboard the story behind the mishap. He was using his secretary’s 10-year-old Dell computer, and before the case, she had been using the filter. Once the cat was out of the bag and off the screen, the case proceeded normally.

“It was a case involving a man trying to exit the United States with contraband and contraband cash,” he told Motherboard. One can’t help but wonder if catnip was involved somehow.

If you ever play around with filters, you’ll want to quickly turn them off when it’s time for serious business. Ponton was likely using a third-party plug-in.

If you’d like to turn yourself into an animal like the kitten above, check out Snap Camera. This popular filter app creates a virtual webcam on your computer. Basically, if you have the app open, it takes the video on your computer’s webcam and processes it with whatever filter you choose.

If you ever use it with Zoom, it’s easy to turn off. Just quit the app so it can’t run the filter through your webcam. Tap or click here for more secrets on Snap Camera.

Want to check your filters before you hop on Zoom? Follow these steps:

  1. Click on your profile picture
  2. Tap Settings
  3. Click the Backgrounds & Filters tab
  4. Then, click the Video Filters tab

Let this be a lesson to everyone who shares their computer. Before you hop into a Zoom meeting, make sure you’re filter-free. Otherwise, you may show up looking like a cat!

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