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Zoom Sessions: View Options


We are looking at having a company townhall meeting and setting it up with Zoom Sessions. What are the viewing options for everyone in the session? Can we have gallery view, or is Zoom Sessions similar to Webinars where we are limited to seeing the presenters only?


Community Champion | Zoom Employee
Community Champion | Zoom Employee

Hi @kchenb when you create your Zoom Session you will select to add either a Webinar or Meeting to it when you are setting it up. So you can still have the gallery view.

Also gallery view is supported in both Webinar and Meeting, however normally in a Webinar there is a small number of presenters with video and in a Meeting it is fully interactive.

Community Champion | Customer
Community Champion | Customer

Hi, @kchenb.


Let me ask... if you mean Zoom Session, you're talking about a single session under a Zoom Event license?  As @mgstark suggests, you can configure your Zoom Events Session to be a Meeting or a Webinar.  I asume you would like it to be a Webinar, based on your question, and for control over what the Attendees see, I highly recommend the Webinar.  Once you are in the session, it's "just a webinar".  The Zoom Events product does give you a few additional options.  But the ability to show participants in this case is the same as a regular Webinar.


Here's my tips for displaying people in the Webinar (note that these also apply to non-Events Webinars!):

  1. First, know that NO attendees (people in the Attendee tab of your Webinar's Panelists display) will be able to be seen.  They can't turn on their camera or their microphone, by default.  They can be invited to speak by the Host, in which case they can unmute and speak.  In order for their camera image to be seen, a Host would have to "promote" the Attendee to Panelist.  I don't recommend this unless your attendees are well known to you, or are registered and vetted in advance.
  2. Next, you have to know - and you should communicate to your panelists - that hosts and panelists view may be different than the Attendee's view.  Several times I've had panicked panelists sending "why do I see so-and-so's computer on my screen while he's not talking."  Panelists and Hosts can set their view to something different than what the Attendees see.
  3. Know that Hosts have control of the Attendee View.  There are several options, depending on whether there is screen sharing in effect. 
  4. For NO screen sharing:
    • I always set the Attendee View to "Speaker".  When Attendee View is set to speaker, one or the other of these will be in effect:
      1. If there is nobody Spotlighted, then whoever is speaking will be shown on screen for the Attendees.  Though this also includes unmuted people who cough, have barking dogs, or family members/coworkers making noise. 
      2. If there is anyone Spotlighted, they will be shown on screen; people not spotlighted will not be shown on Attendee screens.  You can Spotlight up to 9 people.  In order to Spotlight someone, their camera has to be on; but if they are Spotlighted and turn their camera off, their camera box will continue to be shown, either with their Profile Picture or their name, depending on a variety of settings. I always recommend Spotlighting those you want the attendees to see, and not spotlighting any other attendees.
    • You can set the Attendee View to Gallery.  In this case, the Attendees will see anyone whose camera is On.  Hosts and panelists with cameras Off will not be seen.
  5. For Screen Sharing in progress:
    • The settings are changed a little.  Other than "Follow Host" which I never recommend using, there is Standard, Side-By-Side Speaker, and Side-By-Side Gallery.
      1. Side-by-Side Speaker works like Speaker above. The shared content will be to the left of a vertical line, which each attendee can move on their own to see more or less of one side or the other; Spotlighted cameras will be seen to the right of the vertical line.
      2. Side-by-Side Gallery works like Gallery above. The shared content will be to the left of a vertical line, which each attendee can move on their own to see more or less of one side or the other; all cameras that are on will be seen to the right of the vertical line.
      3. Standard - I only recommend using Standard in one specific situation: if you are screen sharing and you to not want anyone's camera to be seen.  For NO camera to be seen, ALL host and panelists cameras must be turned off.  In Standard, if any cameras are on a camera or black panel will be displayed and overlay a portion of the shared screen content.  Even though the Attendee can move the camera image around, I don't recommend using Standard if you also want camera images visible.  Use the Side-By-Side view.

A final few notes:

  • If you as host want to change the setting of the Attendee View, be sure to tell your Co-Hosts (if any) not to change the setting.
  • If you are the host and not screen sharing, the Attendee View menu is part of the View button in the far upper right corner of your Zoom display window.
  • If you are the host and you are sharing your screen, the Attendee View menu is is located in the "More" 3-dot menu of the Participants window (click the Participants button in the floating green/red menu bar, the locate the ... button in the lower right corner of the Participants window). 
    The Attendee View menu is at the bottom of the sub-menu that appears. (Technically speaking, the Attendee View menu is always available here as part of the Participants window, but it's a lot more convenient at the Host's View menu at the top rIght of the screen.)

This may all sound complicated at first... but the primary rule I work with is "Set Attendee View to Speaker and Spotlight any camera I want the Attendees to see."  If you do that, you'll be fine.


If possible, have a separate computer, iPad, or even iPhone/Android device logged into the Webinar as an Attendee, and you'll have visual confirmation that your settings are giving you the appearance you want for your Attendees.

Ray - Office Hours at
Please click Accept As Solution if this helped you !

Community Champion | Customer
Community Champion | Customer

One more note I didn't really cover in my answer:  if you're really looking for that "Community Gallery Wall" view... yes, you can select Meeting in the Session creation process.  This works for small companies, but I discourage it for large groups (over 100 attendees). 


This is especially important if you have many attendees on site at one location, as the video bandwidth will be quite larger with a Meeting as opposed to a Webinar.  And lots of people attending connected to WiFi in one location is a real bandwidth killer.

Ray - Office Hours at
Please click Accept As Solution if this helped you !