Headset Etiquette

This might seem a silly topic but it is amazing some of the stuf that is said over the comms system. and some of it is inappropriate. You need to lay down ground rules for what is said and not said on the headsets. You need to establish ground rules. Talking inanely over the comms system could in fact stuff up a cue. I have heard stuff on the headsets that would have upset cast,crew etc. Basicly what is said over the headsets should be something that you are willing to share with the rest of the cast and crew. It it cannot not be shared it should not be said.

Below is a basic list of Headset etiquette borrowed from Control Booth.

1. Keep your mic off unless speaking.
2. Do not cough, sneeze, yawn, etc  with the mic open.
3. Never discuss anything on headset you wouldn’t discuss in person center stage in front of the audience.
4. ONE person, usually the SM for a play, RULES the headset. Follow his/her lead. Once a “standby” for a cue is given, ALL conversation stops, unless persons or equipment is in eminent bodily harm.
5. Do not move or take off your headset with the mic on.
6. Warn everyone on the channel before plugging or unplugging the headset or beltpack.
7. The volume knob on your beltpack only affects the level you hear. If someone is too loud or too soft, ask them nicely to re-orient their microphone to match everyone else.
8. If using a multi-channel system, be certain you know how to use it properly, so as not to call spot cues to the flymen, for example.
9. Keep the chatter to an absolute minimum.
10. Make the testing of your station a part of your pre-show checklist.

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4 thoughts on “Headset Etiquette

  1. EVERY crew member who put on a set of cans should bereading this. I’m sure you’ll be nodding your head here, but the first 6 points never seem to be fully understood. Jus think of how many times you may have had to say ove the comms to “turn your mic off”.

    Maybe there needs to be a course just on comms use..!!

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