Liven Up Boring Conferences with Seminar Bingo
Have you ever been at a seminar or conference and started nodding off? Or find your mind wandering, thinking of all the other things that you could be doing: lunch, being outside, anything really.
Well now there is a way to make things much more interesting. Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration. It’s called Seminar Bingo and it was created by the popular, long-running PHD Comics who come up with strips about life (or lack thereof) in Academia. As well as creating comics they also sell a whole bunch of merchandise, including “the thesis writer” t-shirts and the “grad students” badges. You’ll probably recognise the iconic style.
To play all you need to do is print out the following bingo sheet and go to a conference. Heck, you could sneak into a lecture if you’re really bored (though that would probably defeat the point). The problem is you have to yell out Bingo if you get a winning line. So you’ll have to be pretty brave if you’re surrounded by a lecture theatre full of people.
It’s about as far removed from traditional bingo as you can get: it might have the same 5x5 layout on the cards but it uses numbered balls - rather than Blatant Typo or Laptop Malfunction - and players mark off numbers as they’re called. For a good overview of online bingo and the kind of options available, visit Two Big Ladies. Technically, a lot of sites have mobile bingo apps so you could just play that instead of risking embarrassment in front of a room of strangers.
Back to the point, this bingo game works on the premise that all conferences and seminars tend to have recurring themes like someone’s phone going off or people in the audience looking completely confused. Like the real game it’s best played with friends to give it an element of competition.
And unlike bingo you don’t have to worry about missing out on a jackpot by sleeping a bingo or not hearing a number. The worst that can happen is you don’t have to yell out bingo!