Showing Virtual Meetings in Bread

Showing Virtual Meetings in Bread

Two previous blog posts (BMLT, Virtual Meetings, and the Pandemic and BMLT, Virtual Meetings, and the Pandemic Part 2) gave recommendations for how to enter data for virtual and hybrid meetings into BMLT, and described how they would appear in a Crouton list. For location-centric virtual meetings that are temporarily replacing an in-person meeting, the crouton display continues to show the old facility name and address, with a prominent “FACILITY IS TEMPORARILY CLOSED” label.

The meeting display doesn’t seem to work as well in bread though for such meetings. They are still marked with the “TC” format, but without the prominent label. This seems too inconspicuous, with a risk of newcomers ending up standing outside a locked door somewhere.

Suggested Solution

  1. Download and install the bread-virtual-meetings WordPress plugin extension from
  2. In the settings for bread:
    1. On the “BMLT Server” tab, make sure “Allow any site-defined fields to be used in meeting templates” is checked.
    2. On the meetings tab, add virtual_meeting_additional_info to the meeting template, perhaps on a second line of text.

(See the two screenshots below.)

Checking the box

Adding the field virtual_meeting_additional_info to the Bread meeting template

Here is an example of how this will appear. The first meeting is a virtual meeting that is temporarily replacing a long-standing in-person meeting, and is marked as “TC”; the second was started as a virtual meeting and never had a physical location.

Example of a printable meeting schedule with virtual meetings

See for the full printable schedule from which the screenshot was taken.

Implementation and Discussion

The schedule can include a mix of in-person, virtual, and hybrid meetings. This extension assumes that the meeting ID and other information about the virtual meeting is stored in virtual_meeting_additional_info field in the server. Printing the contents of this field seems more useful than a complicated URL for people using a printed schedule.

The implementation uses a hook provided by bread that calls a filter function on the data for every meeting. The current extension hardwires in a label “Currently online only — normally at” on the meeting location that is closed. It would be possible to make a more elaborate extension that allowed this to be customized, if desired.