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While taking part in a video conference using Google Meet, formerly known as Hangouts Meet, sometimes other people’s video feeds become too noisy or bothersome. Perhaps they stepped away to quiet a barking dog, or they are interrupting and need to be moderated. In that case, you can mute their microphone. Here’s how.

The Rules of Muting Others in Google Meet

In the wrong context, muting someone else in Google Meet could be taken the wrong way. So, before you do it, be sure you know exactly how the feature works. Here are some pointers:

  • Anyone in a Google Meet conference can mute anyone else.
  • If you mute someone, no one in the conference will be able to hear them.
  • When you mute someone, everyone will be notified that you have muted the person.
  • You cannot unmute someone once they have been muted. They have to unmute themselves. Google says this is for privacy reasons.

How to Mute Someone in Google Meet

If you understand the potential social risks and still want to go for it, here is how to mute someone. This method works on Mac, PC, iPad, or Android, which are all laid out in a similar way.

First, click or tap on the People icon in the top right portion of the Google Meet window.

A menu that lists the meeting, participants will open up on the right side of the window. Click or tap on the name of the person you want to mute.

Three icons will pop up below the person’s name on the list. Tap on the middle icon, which looks like a microphone.

A warning will pop up reminding you that doing this will mute the person for everyone in the call and that the person you are muting is the only one who can unmute themselves.

If you want to go ahead and mute them, click or tap on the “Mute” button.

Google Meet Mute Warning

The person’s microphone will be turned off (muted), and everyone in the meeting will be notified. Remember, only the person that has been muted can unmute themselves.

What To Do If You Have Been Muted in Google Meet

If you’ve been muted by someone else in the meeting, no one can hear you talk, and your microphone icon will appear red or crossed out. Luckily, you can turn your microphone back on by clicking or tapping the microphone icon in the toolbar at the bottom of the screen.

(If the toolbar isn’t visible, hover your cursor over the bottom edge of the Google Meet window, or tap there, to bring it up.)

You can now resume speaking/singing/playing the ukulele, and everyone can hear you again.

Profile Photo for Benj Edwards Benj Edwards
Benj Edwards is a former Associate Editor for How-To Geek. Now, he is an AI and Machine Learning Reporter for Ars Technica. For over 15 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
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