HACK / MAKE

Setting up a Cough Button for Podcasting with Skype

One thing I miss from using professional broadcast gear when I worked in radio is quick control over your sound. As I’m moving back into podcasting more, I want push-button control to mute my Rode Podcaster mic. I found this Applescript, originally written by Dennis Rande, which will toggle the mute status of your current call. I hooked up the script to two Keyboard Maestro macros to emulate a cough button, where my end of the Skype call is is muted while the button is pressed and un-muted when the button is released.

To set this up in Keyboard Maestro, create a new macro tied to when a key of your choice is pressed and have it execute skype-mute.scpt. It’ll look something like this. Create a second macro so when that same key (I use F12) is released, the script is executed again, toggling the mute off. You can also set just a single trigger with “when pressed” and not the second “released” macro to have a standard toggle; hit your key to mute, hit it again to un-mute.1

Whether it’s an actual cough or a belch from drinking Sodastream on-air, you now havce control over whether you want to disgust an over sensitive audience or not.

Download the Applescript


  1. I use this one at work when I’m Skyped into meetings but don’t need to say much. 

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