Coronavirus: SXSW technology conference canceled, postponement possible

Another major event has been canceled due to the corona virus: The South by Southwest Technology Conference (SXSW) is not taking place this year. This has been decided by the Austin City Council in Texas.

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Austin's mayor Steve Adler said at a press conference that he had followed the city health agency's recommendations and canceled the event. He called the decision himself "unhappy". The size of the event and the close contact between the participants were factors that contributed to the decision.

"We are heartbroken to have to tell you", the organizers write on their website. According to their own statements, they are considering postponing the event to a later date. "We understand the seriousness of the situation for all creatives who use SXSW to advance their careers, for international companies, and for Austin and the many small businesses – venues, theaters, vendors, production companies, service providers, and other partners who rely heavily on the now big business with SXSW. "

The SXSW festival has been held in March since 1987. This year it would be from March 13th to March 22nd. been. It is an industry gathering as well as a film, music and tech festival that draws many visitors to the city. Last year over 400,000 people came from all over the world. It will be canceled for the first time this year. However, various companies had announced before the official cancellation that they would not participate.

SXSW is not the first major event to be canceled out of caution about the virus. The Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and the CP + photo fair in Japan were canceled last month, as was the Geneva Motor Show and Google and Facebook in-house conferences. Other events will be postponed, including the game developers' conference Game Developers Conference, the European Kubecon and the Hannover Messe industrial show.

Several large companies, such as IBM, have prohibited their employees from traveling to meetings and trade shows. Various technology companies, including Google, Microsoft and Twitter, have asked their employees to work from home.

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