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Why is the Text in my Teams Background Back To Front

With Teams (and Zoom, and probably other video conferencing apps) as well as apps that add to the live camera image such Chromacam and Snap Camera in popular use, you might have noticed that all the example backgrounds have no text on them.

So what happens when you or your company roll out a set background to use that does contain text – for example, this mockup image:

Teams background mockup with text
Teams Background With Added Text

Now my graphics editing skills are not great, but this is just one of the included background images that come with Microsoft Teams and a logo added as if it were a picture on the wall.

So what happens when I use this as my custom background in Teams (or Zoom etc.) – the following is what I see:

Teams (Presenter View) on Desktop with Text In Background Meeting
Teams (Presenter View) on Desktop with Text In Background Meeting

You can see that in the view of the background I can see the text is back to front. This is correct, as the view from my camera that is presented back to me is usually mirrored for my convenience. This is because they way I see myself is in a mirror, and so to show me “unmirrored” so to speak would look odd to me. Also if I raise one hand or move to one side, the mirrored image of me from my camera shows this happening on the side of the screen I would naturally expect it to be on.

The downside of this is that any text we add to background images will appear back to front for us – but it will appear correct to all attendees, as the Teams will not show the attendees the mirrored image. Just as we expect to see a mirror image when looking at ourselves, others who look at us do not expect to see that, and the video conferencing apps will not show that to them – so they see your logo, or text or whatever, correctly as you intended.

Teams Attendee View (iPhone)
Teams (Attendee View) on iPhone, with text the correct orientation

3 replies on “Why is the Text in my Teams Background Back To Front”

So if you were looking at yourself in the mirrored presentation on Teams and you wanted to point to the “t” in the name on your company logo, would you raise your left arm and point to your left, and behind you, or would you use your right arm and point right and behind you?

I have teachers who are trying to writing on their whiteboards and the writing is appearing “mirrored” to them and to students. How can they make it appear correct for their students?

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