The City of Austin has cancelled SXSW 2020 due to take place this month amid fears of Coronavirus spreading. This is the first time in 34 years that SXSW won’t go ahead, and while Austin Public Health doesn’t think cancelling the event will make the environment safer, it noted that the situation has evolved rapidly since Coronavirus first came to light last December.
“We are exploring options to reschedule the event and are working to provide a virtual SXSW online experience as soon as possible for 2020 participants, starting with SXSW EDU,” wrote the organizer. “We understand the gravity of the situation for all the creatives who utilize SXSW to accelerate their careers; for the global businesses; and for Austin and the hundreds of small businesses – venues, theatres, vendors, production companies, service industry staff, and other partners that rely so heavily on the increased business that SXSW attracts.”
Meanwhile, SEGA has said that its Sonic SXSW panel will be reformatted and presented in April instead.
Elsewhere, Twitch announced that it has cancelled TwitchCon Amsterdam due to Coronavirus concerns. The company said that it’s disappointed but prioritizes health and safety of its community. A full refund is being offered to those who’ve already purchased tickets.
In addition to the above, a number of video game companies announced that they have postponed their gaming events. A list is as follows:
- Bandai Namco Entertainment has rescheduled qualifier rounds of Tekken World Tour 2020 and Soulcalibur World Tour 2020 to later this year. Details will be announced in due course.
- Electronic Arts has postponed Apex Legends and FIFA 2020 events due to take place between March and April. New schedule will be released soon.
- Mojang has postponed Minecraft Festival until 2021. Although the event was scheduled to take place in September, the studio said that it requires a lot of preparations for a “mammoth” event like this and due to Coronavirus, Mojang’s stakeholders in various parts of the world are unable to meet and make any progress. However, Minecraft Live will go ahead. Details will be revealed in due course.
We’ll continue to update our readers as we receive more information.