What are Meetings?

What you'll learn

Meetings in RescueTime are scheduled work events with 2 or more attendees. RescueTime recognizes meetings in two different ways: through your connected calendar, or through an activity that is categorized as a meeting (i.e. Zoom, Google Meet). RescueTime classifies meeting time as either scheduled or unscheduled on your Meetings page. This does not show on your Activities page.

Scheduled Meetings

RescueTime considers any calendar event with an additional invitee a scheduled meeting (this invitee does not need to accept the invitation). Calendar events that only include yourself are not counted as scheduled meetings unless #meeting is added to the title or description.

During a scheduled meeting, the Assistant switches to meeting mode. During this time your other computer activities—for example, using other programs while sharing your screen— will not display on the Activities page. All this time will be assigned to your "scheduled meetings" on your Meetings Report. However, you can find all this time displayed on your Analytics Report. Also during your meeting, you won't be able to add offline work or start a Focus Session. 

About five minutes before your meeting, a Join Meeting pinned alert will display in your Assistant. If you have a Zoom, Google Meet, or Microsoft Teams link in your calendar event, a Join meeting button will be present for you to join the meeting directly. You can learn more about alerts here.

On Mac, you'll also see a Meeting icon in the menu bar. If you have a Zoom or Google Meet link in your calendar event then clicking this icon will take you directly to the meeting app. Clicking the RescueTime icon will bring up the Assistant with the Join Meeting pinned alert.

If your meeting ends early, click " This meeting ended early" in the Assistant and normal activity tracking will resume. You'll be able to add offline work or start a Focus Session again. 

* Please note: clicking this button does not update your scheduled meeting time on your Meetings Report. You'll need to update your calendar to have that information adjusted on your Meetings Report. 

Unscheduled Meetings

Unscheduled meeting time is time spent in a meeting app logged outside of your scheduled meetings. This time is most commonly logged when your meetings extend past their allotted time or when you have unplanned meetings (not in your calendar). RescueTime will track your other activities during this time. The desktop application or website that is in the foreground will be recorded and reported. So during a Zoom call, for instance, if you're browsing the web, then that will be recorded and your unscheduled meeting report will show less time than anticipated.

You don't have to have a connected calendar in order for RescueTime to track your meeting app. RescueTime will pick up your meeting app, and record and report it under unscheduled meetings in your meetings report. Also, offline work that you assign as a "Meeting" will also be counted as an unscheduled meeting. 

Please note: you will need to connect your calendar if you want RescueTime to not track your other computer activities (ie surfing the web while on a Zoom call) during your meeting. RescueTime needs the calendar event to know to ignore those other computer activities during your meeting.

How do I categorize an activity as a meeting?

RescueTime automatically categorizes some activities as meetings (i.e. Zoom, Google Meet), but you can customize which activities are considered meetings and which are not on your Activities page. This is helpful for those people who use chat apps like Microsoft Teams or Slack as their primary meeting apps.

To categorize an activity as a meeting follow these steps:

Go to your Activities page.

Click on the activity you want to categorize as a meeting.

Click on the "More Details" link.

Click on the middle field box which will display a dropdown for you to choose "a meeting app". After you close the modal, your meeting time will be updated with the re-categorized activity's time. This activity's time will be added to meetings retroactively.

Why doesn't RescueTime recognize my calendar event as a meeting?

In order for a calendar event to be recognized as a meeting, the event needs to have an additional invitee (besides yourself) or include the hashtag  #meeting in either the title or description of the event. If the event has more than one invitee, RescueTime automatically categorizes the event as a meeting, unless #notameeting is used to indicate that it is not. Learn more about calendar hashtags.

Meeting Hashtag

You can schedule a meeting using the #meeting hashtag. Here is how the #meeting hashtag works:

  • Allows you to categorize a single-attendee event (just you) as a meeting
  • During the event, RescueTime  does not track any activities. You will not see these activities in your reports.
  • During a #meeting event, even meeting apps are not recorded. Meeting apps are tracked  outside of #meeting events.
  • If a #meeting is scheduled outside of your work schedule, activities during that event are not reported, but the block of meeting time is reported as a scheduled meeting.

How do I label a calendar event so that RescueTime does not consider it a meeting?

RescueTime considers an event with 2 or more attendees as a meeting. If you'd like RescueTime to ignore a meeting, you can add the hashtag  #notameeting to the title or description of the event.

Overlapping Time

By default, if you have overlapping meetings scheduled on your calendar, RescueTime will not count the overlap time. This is intended to provide a more realistic picture of your work day. 

For instance, if you have a 3 PM to 4 PM meeting on your calendar and a 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM meeting, then your total scheduled meeting time will be 1 hr 30 min. 

If you want the overlap time to count, then you would enable this option on your Product Settings page. Taking the example above, enabling this option will mean your total scheduled meeting time will be 2 hrs.

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