Coronavirus 2020 tech conference cancellations list
The World Health Organization (WHO) has upgraded the global risk from the new coronavirus to “very high” as the virus continues to spread. As of Monday, there are more than 89,000 confirmed cases of the COVID-19 disease and at least 3,000 reported deaths, including 6 in Washington state. The disease has been detected in more than 50 countries and the number of infections continues to rise.
In last week’s Monday Morning Opener, Larry Dignan examined how the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak is affecting global supply chains and consumer demand. On Friday he looked at how the disease may accelerate the future of work, including an increase in telecommuting, greater importance on video conferencing and digital collaboration technology, and less travel. As Larry wrote, “One thing is certain: The coronavirus is likely to mean the definition of business, as usual, will change.”
SEE: Coronavirus having major effect on tech industry beyond supply chain delays (free PDF) (TechRepublic)
While we won’t know the coronavirus’ effects on the overall nature of work for some time, one sector of the tech economy that’s already feeling an immediate impact is industry events. Whether as a result of travel bans, laws banning large gatherings, or an abundance of caution, tech conferences are being canceled, postponed, or converted to virtual events. Companies are also instituting travel restrictions for employees. So, I decided to use this Monday Morning Opener to compile a list of the events that have been canceled, pushed back, changed format, or are being held as scheduled.
Note: The coronavirus’ effect on the tech industry is a rapidly-changing story. We will do our best to update this list as news of conference cancellations and travel restrictions breaks.
Also: Coronavirus: Effective strategies and tools for remote work during a pandemic
Tech conferences canceled, postponed, or going virtual
- MWC Americas (Oct. 28-30 in Los Angeles) – Being held as scheduled
- Gartner CIO Symposium/ITxPo (Oct. 18-22 in Orlando) – Being held as scheduled
- VMworld (Aug. 31-Sep. 3 in San Francisco) – Being held as scheduled
- HPE Discover (Jun. 23-25 in Las Vegas) – Being held as scheduled
- Cisco Live (May 31- Jun. 4 in Las Vegas) – Being held as scheduled
- Recode Code Conference 2020 (May 26-28 in Beverly Hills, Calif.) – Being held as scheduled
- Google I/O (May 12-14 in Mountain View, Calif.) – Being held as scheduled
- SAP SAPPHIRE NOW (May 12-14 in Orlando) – Being held as scheduled
- Facebook F8 (May 6-8 in San Jose, Calif.) – Canceled
- Shopify Unite 2020 developers conference (May 6-8 in Toronto) – In-person canceled; online-only event
- Dell World (May 4-7 in Las Vegas) – Being held as scheduled
- Google Cloud Next (Apr. 6-8 in San Francisco) – Being held as scheduled
- Adobe Summit (Mar. 29-Apr. 2 in Las Vegas) – Being held as scheduled
- Google News Initiative Summit (Late Apr. in Sunnyvale, Calif.) – Canceled
- Black Hat Asia 2020 (Mar. 31-Apr. 3 in Singapore) – Postponed until Sep. 29-Oct. 2
- Paris Blockchain Week Summit (Mar. 31-Apr. 1 in Paris) – Postponed until Dec. 9-10
- SAS Global Forum (Mar. 29-Apr. 1 in Washington, DC) – Being held as scheduled
- EmTech Asia (Mar. 24-36 in Singapore) – Postponed to Aug. 4-5
- Gartner Data and Analytics Summit (Mar. 23-26 in Grapevine, TX) – Being held as scheduled
- Nvidia GTC (Mar. 22-26 in San Jose) – In-person canceled; online-only event
- Domopalooza (Mar. 18-19 in Salt Lake City, Utah) – In-person canceled; online-only event
- Microsoft MVP Global Summit (Mar. 15-20 in Bellevue & Redmond, Wash.) – In-person canceled; online-only event
- F5 Agility 2020 (Mar. 16-19 in Orlando, Florida) – In-person canceled; online-only event
- O’Reilly Strata Data & AI Conference (Mar. 15-18, San Jose, Calif.) – Being held as scheduled
- Game Developers Conference (GDC) (Mar. 16-20 in San Francisco) – Postponed to Summer 2020
- SXSW (Mar. 12-22 in Austin, Texas) – Being held as scheduled (Twitter has withdrawn from SXSW)
- Facebook Global Marketing Summit (Mar. 9-12 in San Francisco) – Canceled
- OFC 2020 (Mar. 8-12 in San Diego, Calif.) – Being held as scheduled
- Salesforce World Tour Sydney (Mar. 4 in Sydney) – In-person canceled; online-only event
- Cisco Live Melbourne (Mar. 3-6 in Melbourne) – Canceled
- RSA (Feb. 24-28 in San Francisco) – Held as planned (IBM, AT&T, Verizon, and other vendors withdrew)
- MWC Barcelona (Feb. 24-27 in Barcelona) – Canceled
SEE: Facebook cancels F8: How the coronavirus is disrupting tech conferences worldwide (TechRepublic)
Tech company travel restrictions
As of February 29, 2020, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued multiple travel warnings due to the coronavirus.
Amazon has asked all of its 798,000 employees to stop all nonessential travel, both domestic and internationally, immediately, according to an Amazon spokesperson. After a Google employee in Switzerland tested positive for coronavirus, the company expanded employee travel restrictions. Twitter has canceled all non-essential employee travel until further notice.
On Monday, Salesforce announced a series of employee safety measures for the month of March, “including prohibiting cross border travel, restricting all but the most critical domestic travel, replacing our in-person customer events with digital experiences, and enhancing our office protocols to ensure we provide the healthiest work environment possible.”
Apple, Facebook, Microsoft, and others have also implemented employee travel restrictions.
ZDNET’S MONDAY MORNING OPENER:
The Monday Morning Opener is our opening salvo for the week in tech. Since we run a global site, this editorial publishes on Monday at 8am AEST in Sydney, Australia, which is 6pm Eastern Time on Sunday in the US. It is written by a member of ZDNet’s global editorial board, which is comprised of our lead editors across Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America.
Updated March 2, 2020 4:54pm EST: Updated coronavirus statistics, added information about Salesforce and updated the list of conference cancellations.