Sorry, I was on mute

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Conference Call Anatomy™

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A partial defence to conference call ambush, but one that will not excuse you from not having heard (for which, read, paid any attention to) the dreary monologue that has gone on for the previous ten minutes, the conclusion to which is an open-ended question to you.

Sorry, I was on mute” buys only time. But time won’t help you if you don’t have the foggiest idea what was being said in the first place. The “mute” gambit is a shield, not a sword.[1]

A far better tactic is “sorry, I was having Skype trouble”, a modern-day equivalent to screwing up the newspaper in the receiver, announcing you have a bad connection, and hanging up on your mother-in-law.

The genuinely belligerent could try going crazy Ivan at the bottom of the hour.

See also


  1. Something that no-one appears to have told Laura Pidcock, in a uniquely modern mode of political passive aggression.