Staying social at a distance

Friday, April 17, 2020

What did we do before the internet?

Whether you’re new to living away from home or need help staying in touch with family and friends you’re not seeing as much as you’d like, there are so many more options than ever before. From virtual games nights to watch parties, you have plenty of options for staying social from a distance.

Zoom and Google Hangouts

Sure, you spend all day in Zoom meetings, but once you’re clocked out, it can be a great tool for staying in touch with far-away loved ones. Pour a nice drink and sit down to a virtual happy hour with your friends. 

Netflix Party

If you both have Netflix and an internet connection, you can watch something together with this handy Chrome extension. To use it, one person starts up the movie or tv show you want to watch, then shares the link to invite anyone who’s joining in. It’ll automatically sync your watching, and if one person pauses, they’ll pause it for everyone watching! No more hearing your friend laugh and waiting five seconds to get the joke.


OK, listening to music might not immediately seem like a very social activity - but have you ever been at a party where the queue is made up of everyone’s suggestions, one after the other, reflecting the mismatched musical taste of everyone in the group? If you’re missing that feeling of collaboration, or just want to hear what everyone else is listening to, create a shared Spotify playlist! Everyone can add music, so put it on shuffle and pretend your friends are right there with you singing along.

This app makes it easy to play socially-distanced Pictionary with all your friends and family. Simply open it on your computer, phone, or tablet and take turns doodling words for everyone else to guess. It supports multiple languages and even lets you include your own terms - so your family can get a laugh out of having to draw Uncle Will’s moustache.

Marco Polo

Pool games won’t be in the cards for a while yet for most of us, but this app lets you record and send videos to your friends, with special effects and no time limits - like a real conversation that you can put on hold or walk away from whenever Netflix starts calling your name! It’s the best of both worlds.

So what are you waiting for? Set up your next happy hour, game night, or video chat and let the people you love know you’re thinking about them.


Need a little help?

Griffith has plenty of wellness supports available for students and staff alike, both in-person and online.