Bring Some Magic to Your Next Zoom Meeting With These Harry Potter Backgrounds

Video-chatting is a little like chatting by Floo Powder (minus all the soot).
Video-chatting is a little like chatting by Floo Powder (minus all the soot).
Christian Wagner, Unsplash

While Harry Potter definitely never jumped on a Zoom call with his classmates, video-chatting technology does have some similarities to communicating via Floo Powder, portrait-hopping, or Sirius Black’s mysterious mirrors. To make your next Zoom meeting feel a little more magical, why not switch your background to one of your favorite Wizarding World locales?

As Screen Rant reports, some particularly kindhearted Twitter users have offered up their own personal photos of Harry Potter film sets as potential backgrounds for fellow fans. “Socially distant dave” (@ddryan), for example, shared snapshots taken during a Warner Bros. studio tour in London; there’s an image of Dumbledore’s eccentric office with the Sorting Hat perched on its usual shelf, a view of Diagon Alley that features Ollivanders, Flourish & Blotts, the eye-catching Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes, and more.

There are also plenty of photos people have taken at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter or other Harry Potter-themed locations and posted them to image-sharing sites like Unsplash and Flickr, and many of them are available to use if you credit the owner. From the Weasleys’s cozy Burrow to the (possibly even cozier) Gryffindor common room, below are several of our favorites.

And for directions on how to change your Zoom background—plus some other pop culture images to use—head here.

1. The Burrow

Yes, the jumper is knitting itself.Tony Hisgett, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

When your Zoom call is over, you can help the Weasleys de-gnome the garden before dinner.

2. The Defense Against the Dark Arts classroom

There's a grindylow in a tank just out of frame.Norm Lanier, Flickr // CC BY-NC 2.0

Professor Lupin is off hunting for a Boggart to use for Dementor practice later this evening, and he’s given you permission to use his empty classroom to video-chat with your classmates in the meantime.

3. Honeydukes

Steer clear of the Cockroach Clusters.Kevin, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Stock up on Sugar Quills, Fizzing Whizzbees, and a nice big bar of Honeydukes’s classic chocolate before your late morning meeting, in case it cuts into your lunch hour.

4. Platform 9 ¾

Best do it at a bit of a run, if you're nervous.Sarah Ehlers, Unsplash

You can squeeze in a quick Zoom touch-base with your team before you head through the barrier, but don’t lose track of the time—the Hogwarts Express departs precisely at 11:00 a.m., and it waits for no one.

5. The Gryffindor common room

Drop a Dungbomb if you need to clear the common room for a private video-chat.Orangeaurochs, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

Afternoon all booked up with back-to-back video calls? Nab an armchair by the fire—they’re extra squashy.

6. Hogwarts Castle

Bright sky, but not too sunny—perfect Quidditch conditions.Christian Wagner, Unsplash

This sweeping view of the beautiful Hogwarts castle just might convince you to start re-reading the entire Harry Potter series as soon as your last Zoom call of the week is over.

[h/t Screen Rant]

Take Advantage of Amazon's Early Black Friday Deals on Tech, Kitchen Appliances, and More

Amazon
Amazon

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Even though Black Friday is still a few days away, Amazon is offering early deals on kitchen appliances, tech, video games, and plenty more. We will keep updating this page as sales come in, but for now, here are the best Amazon Black Friday sales to check out.

Kitchen

Instant Pot/Amazon

- Instant Pot Duo Plus 9-in-115 Quart Electric Pressure Cooker; $90 (save $40) 

- Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Signature Sauteuse 3.5 Quarts; $180 (save $120)

- KitchenAid KSMSFTA Sifter with Scale Attachment; $95 (save $75) 

- Keurig K-Mini Coffee Maker; $60 (save $20)

- Cuisinart Bread Maker; $88 (save $97)

- Anova Culinary Sous Vide Precision Cooker; $139 (save $60)

- Aicook Juicer Machine; $35 (save $15)

- JoyJolt Double Wall Insulated Espresso Mugs - Set of Two; $14 (save $10) 

- Longzon Silicone Stretch Lids - Set of 14; $13 (save $14)

HadinEEon Milk Frother; $37 (save $33)

Home Appliances

Roomba/Amazon

- iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum with Wi-Fi Connectivity; $179 (save $101)

- Fairywill Electric Toothbrush with Four Brush Heads; $19 (save $9)

- ASAKUKI 500ml Premium Essential Oil Diffuser; $22 (save $4)

- Facebook Portal Smart Video Calling 10 inch Touch Screen Display with Alexa; $129 (save $50)

- Bissell air320 Smart Air Purifier with HEPA and Carbon Filters; $280 (save $50)

Oscillating Quiet Cooling Fan Tower; $59 (save $31) 

TaoTronics PTC 1500W Fast Quiet Heating Ceramic Tower; $55 (save $10)

Vitamix 068051 FoodCycler 2 Liter Capacity; $300 (save $100)

AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Home Office Shredder; $33 (save $7)

Ring Video Doorbell; $70 (save $30) 

Video games

Sony

- Marvel's Spider-Man: Game of The Year Edition for PlayStation 4; $20 (save $20)

- Marvel's Avengers; $27 (save $33)

- Minecraft Dungeons Hero Edition for Nintendo Switch; $20 (save $10)

- The Last of Us Part II for PlayStation 4; $30 (save $30)

- LEGO Harry Potter: Collection; $15 (save $15)

- Ghost of Tsushima; $40 (save $20)

BioShock: The Collection; $20 (save $30)

The Sims 4; $20 (save $20)

God of War for PlayStation 4; $10 (save $10)

Days Gone for PlayStation 4; $20 (save $6)

Luigi's Mansion 3 for Nintendo Switch; $40 (save $20)

Computers and tablets

Microsoft/Amazon

- Apple MacBook Air 13 inches with 256 GB; $899 (save $100)

- New Apple MacBook Pro 16 inches with 512 GB; $2149 (save $250) 

- Samsung Chromebook 4 Chrome OS 11.6 inches with 32 GB; $210 (save $20) 

- Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 with 13.5 inch Touch-Screen; $1200 (save $400)

- Lenovo ThinkPad T490 Laptop; $889 (save $111)

- Amazon Fire HD 10 Tablet (64GB); $120 (save $70)

- Amazon Fire HD 10 Kids Edition Tablet (32 GB); $130 (save $70)

- Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8 inches with 32 GB; $100 (save $50)

Apple iPad Mini (64 GB); $379 (save $20)

- Apple iMac 27 inches with 256 GB; $1649 (save $150)

- Vankyo MatrixPad S2 Tablet; $120 (save $10)

Tech, gadgets, and TVs

Apple/Amazon

- Apple Watch Series 3 with GPS; $179 (save $20) 

- SAMSUNG 75-inch Class Crystal 4K Smart TV; $998 (save $200)

- Apple AirPods Pro; $169 (save $50)

- Nixplay 2K Smart Digital Picture Frame 9.7 Inch Silver; $238 (save $92)

- All-New Amazon Echo Dot with Clock and Alexa (4th Gen); $39 (save $21)

- MACTREM LED Ring Light 6" with Tripod Stand; $16 (save $3)

- Anker Soundcore Upgraded Bluetooth Speaker; $22 (save $8)

- Amazon Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote; $28 (save $12)

Canon EOS M50 Mirrorless Camera with EF-M 15-45mm Lens; $549 (save $100)

DR. J Professional HI-04 Mini Projector; $93 (save $37)

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The Mental Floss Store's Black Friday and Cyber Monday Sale Is Live!

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The Mental Floss Store

You've been asking about it for months, and today we can finally confirm that the Mental Floss Store is back up and running! Simply head here to find dozens of T-shirts with all sorts of unique designs to choose from, whether you’re in the market for a pi pun, a risqué grammar joke, or something only your fellow bookworms will appreciate. You can even use your new Mental Floss shirt to teach your friends all about scurvy. And right now, if you use the code BLACKFRIDAY at checkout, you'll get 25 percent off your order. This deal runs through 11:59 p.m. on November 30.

We're adding new designs all the time, and you can check out a few of our latest arrivals below:

Mental Floss Shop

Mental Floss Shop shirt.

If you’re just in the mood to express your love of all things Mental Floss, you can also get our darling little logo on phone cases, tote bags, mugs, baby bibs, and more.

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Head on over to the Mental Floss Store to see our entire collection. 

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