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Frequently Asked Questions

Why use Spiderphone instead of other conference call companies?
Do I have to make a reservation?
How many people can be in one call?
Can I give PowerPoint presentations to people without PowerPoint?
What if nobody is by a web browser when the conference call starts?
What if my browser disconnects in the middle of a conference call?
Is the voice part of my conference call secure?
Is it possible for an Internet hacker to spy on my conference and see who is participating?
Can someone join my conference call without my knowledge?
What information do you collect about me, and how is it used?
How does my web page get control of my phone line?
What are the differences between "participant" and "audience" access codes?
Can the system show who's talking in a room full of people with a speakerphone?
What if I reserve the wrong amount?
My conference call is noisy. What can I do?
Can I use the same access code for multiple calls?
Where does the name "Spiderphone" come from?


Why use Spiderphone instead of other conference call companies?
The short answer is because you see who's talking, you control each line of the call, you can dial both in and out of your conference, you have more security, you can give PowerPoint presentations over the web, and you save significant amounts of money. Here's a
more detailed answer.

Do I have to make a reservation?
No. You can start a conference on-demand at any time from the web or from your telephone. From the web, you do this by selecting
start a conference call now on the home page. From the phone, you do this by dialing the main system number just as you do to join a conference, but instead of entering the standard conference code, you enter your secret Account PIN (which you can find under view your account). After asking you to confirm that you want to start a new conference, the system will instantly set up a call that others can now join using your regular conference code.
Note, however, that at this time, special reservation options such as recording or panel discussions with silent audience can only be selected when reserving or starting your call from the web.

How many people can be on one call?
At this time our normal limit is 160 participants per call (dialed in or out in any combination), but larger conferences are available by arrangement.

What if nobody is by a web browser when the conference call starts?
You don't need the web to participate because you can call in from any telephone. If nobody has a web browser, you have a traditional conference call and you won't be able to see who is connected or who is talking. If possible, it's a good idea for at least one participant with a browser to join the call so that person can check who is on and can drop, add, and mute lines as necessary to help the call run as smoothly as possible.

What if my browser disconnects in the middle of a conference call?
The conference will continue and you may reconnect to the web page later by pressing the "View" button on the home page. Probably no one else will notice unless they want to send you an instant chat message and see that you are no longer connected to the web.

Can I give PowerPoint presentations to people without PowerPoint?
Yes. When you upload your PowerPoint file to the conference call, it is converted into secure web pages that all your participants will be able to view (one for each slide). Nobody, not even the presenter, needs to have PowerPoint or any other special software. You will just need a web browser and telephone that you can use at the same time.

Is the voice part of my conference call secure?
Your voice does not travel on the Internet. Our bridges are connected to the public switched telephone network through high-density digital lines at a secure facility directly co-located with a major telephone carrier switch. The facility is guarded, under video surveillance, has card-key access only, and equipment is in a locked cabinet. It is unlikely that anyone taps our telephone equipment, but if a participant on your conference call has a tapped line, or if a participant is using an analog cellular phone, then the security of your call may be compromised.

Is it possible for an Internet hacker to spy on my conference and see who is participating?
No. All private information about your conference is transmitted over an SSL encrypted connection. This is the same method of encryption that financial institutions use to protect customer account data, credit card numbers, and online stock trades. All your phone numbers, names, credit card data, and conference access codes are always encrypted before we transmit them over the Internet. The text of instant chat messages is not encrypted, however. This makes the instant messages sent during a conference slightly vulnerable to sophisticated attack, but these messages are more secure than normal email sent over the Internet.

Can someone join my conference call without my knowledge?
No. You hear a distinctive sound every time someone joins the conference, and each telephone connection into your call is displayed on the web page, along with its phone number and calling location if available. It is not even possible for a Spiderphone operator to join your conference without your knowledge.

What information do you collect about me, and how is it used?
Spiderphone is careful to preserve the privacy and security of customer data, and we participate in the Council of Better Business Bureaus' BBBOnLine Privacy Program. See our
privacy and security policy for more details.

How does my web page get control of my phone line?
When you join on the web, you receive a unique, secure temporary "star code" that you enter on your phone in addition to the normal conference access code. As soon as you enter this star code on your phone, your browser can use this code to control your phone line, and if you have host access, it can also control the other phone lines in the conference.

What are the differences between "participant" and "audience" access codes?
Those with participant access codes can add, mute, rename, or hang-up anyone on the call. In addition, they can dial additional participants and terminate the conference. Those with audience access codes enter and leave the conference silently, and can not speak unless unmuted by a participant. They can see who is on the call and who is talking, and they can can rename, mute, and hang-up their own phone lines but not anyone else's. For interactive discussions, we recommend that you give everyone the participant code so they can help manage the call if necessary. Note that the participant access code will not allow people to reserve or make calls using your account because your account password or PIN is needed to do that.

Can the system show who's talking in a room full of people with a speakerphone?
No. The system can only show you which line is talking, so anyone talking in that room will show up as the room talking. There is no reliable way for the system to automatically identify individual speakers sharing a single phone line.

What if I reserve the wrong amount?
If you reserve too much time and never use it, you may prevent other people from making calls they could have otherwise made. You can change a reservation you've made if something causes you to need to reschedule or otherwise change your conference call. Simply select View a reservation from the home page.
 
If we have the capacity, your confence call will be extended automatically when you use more time or ports than you reserved.

My conference call is noisy. What can I do?
Speakerphones are the most common source of noise in conference calls. Encourage everyone to use their handsets or put their speakerphone on "mute" when they are not talking, and you will have a much clearer conference. Cellular phones are another common source of noise. If one of your participants has a noisy cellular phone connection, you may see this line appear as the active talker during periods of silence. Try muting this line from the web page. Muted participants can speak again whenever they want by pressing any digit on their phone, or you can unmute them yourself from the web page.

Can I use the same access code for multiple calls?
Yes. Your account has fixed access codes that are used by default for all your conference calls, so you can have the same code from one conference call to the next. You also have the option to use a unique access codes for any conference if you don't want to give out your regular codes, or if you need to schedule more than one conference for the same time. It is also possible to change your fixed access code at any time from the
view your account link on the home page. And don't worry about anyone else making unauthorized calls with your account just because they know your regular access code. The account password or account PIN is required in order to set up new calls.

Where does the name "Spiderphone" come from?
Conference call gurus refer to each phone line connected to a conference bridge as a "leg." Spiders have lots of legs, and of course they're on the web.

 
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