Talkshoe.com

There are two ways to participate in a TalkShoe "talk-cast."

1. (Simple and Preferred Method) When you come to the TalkShoe event page, if you click on the large "Join In" button, you are taken to the call web client. This page shows those who are also attending the call and lets you participate in the chat. If you sign up or have an account from TalkShoe, your name will appear on the attendee list on the right side. Otherwise, you will show as a guest. At the bottom of the screen you will see a call-in phone number and an individual code. If you call this number and enter your code, your voice call will be matched to your log-in or guest account and you will hear the conference call through your phone (or Skype, which works well here). You will be muted by default when your call is connected, and when you want to speak you can then click on the "Add to queue / request to speak" button that's above the participant list on the right side (looks like a voice bubble). If you don't call in, you will hear the conversation streamed from the website, you can participate in the chat, but you will not be able to participate by voice (unless you follow instructions #2 below).

2. (More Complicated, Best for Free Call) When you come to the Talkshoe event page, if you click on the smaller "TalkShoe Live Pro" button, you will be given instructions to download a special flash-based program that has fuller functionality that the web-only view. You can also choose whether to call in (like #1 above) or to use the the microphone and speakers from your computer to participate in the call. This is a very cool system, but there is time involved in downloading and testing the flash-based voice program, and it's not nearly so straightforward to walk you through as instructions #1. However, it appears that this is the only way to use the "request to talk" feature, so I am recommending it. If you are not in North America and do not want to pay phone charges for your participation, this also may be your the best option. Once you have downloaded the software and then joined the call, you have the same good options for participation.