The number of local and international events and trade fairs cancelled due to the threat of coronavirus is increasing daily.
The cancellations have largely affected events that will see thousands of people gathered together in indoor spaces. In addition to the cancellation of CP+ and the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, which were scheduled for February, here’s a list of the up-coming events we have found out about so far:
The inaugural PHOTO 2020 International Festival of Photography, which was due to take place at various venues in Melbourne and regional Victoria from April 23–May 10, has been postponed until 10 to 27 September 2020.
Locally, Tasmania’s Dark Mofo winter arts festival, which is run by the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) and normally occurs in June, has been cancelled. Womadelaide, which is on now, is still running largely to plan, probably because many events occur in outdoor venues. MONA will also close ‘temporarily’ from Wednesday 18 March. Click here to read David Walsh’s statement regarding the closure.
The annual Parramasala Multicultural festival, which was scheduled to take place in the Sydney suburb of Parramatta from 13 to 15 March, has been cancelled. Also in NSW, Vivid Sydney, the largest festival of light, music and ideas in the Southern Hemisphere, which was scheduled to run from 22 May to 13 June, has been cancelled. Also cancelled is the 2020 Sydney Royal Easter Show, which was due to open on 3 April.
The Northern Territory Government has cancelled its non-essential trips to remote communities as part of its COVID-19 Remote Communities Plan, which also recommends that anyone who has travelled overseas to a high or moderate-risk coronavirus country in the previous fortnight not visit remote communities.
Current advice says that anyone planning to travel within Australia should be safe to do so. However, there is a possibility of flights being cancelled due to a downturn in the number of flight bookings. Popular routes are less likely to be affected than routes with fewer flights.
UPDATE: 19/3/2020: Qantas and Jetstar will suspend all international flights from late this month until at least the end of May. Roughly 30,000 employees will be stood down temporarily ‘to preserve as many of its jobs as possible longer term’. Virgin Australia also announced on 18/3/2020 that it was grounding its international fleet in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Tasmanian Premier, Peter Gutwein, has introduced ‘tough border measures’ that will require “non essential” travellers into the state – including Tasmanians – to go into 14 days’ quarantine from midnight on Friday 20/3/2020.
UPDATE: 8/4/2020: All Australian states have closed their borders to travellers and cruise ships are no longer being allowed to discharge passengers at Australian ports. Returning travellers must spend 14 days in supervised compulsory idolation. Travel within states is also being discouraged to prevent further dissemination of the virus. Sporting events, concerts theatre performances and other events where crowds might gather have been cancelled. The Federal and State governments are urging everyone to stay at home unless it is necessary to go out for things like essential shopping, medical visits, and work.
Internationally, the list is much longer and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has advised travellers to avoid China, Iran and South Korea. Italy is currently in lock-down and Cambodia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore and Thailand are at moderate risk for Covid-19. A number of big international conferences have been cancelled and more cancellations are likely.
The Photography Show scheduled for 14-17 March in the United Kingdom has been postponed until 19–22 September and will be held at the original location in Birmingham, England.
The World Press Photo Foundation has cancelled the two-day awards show and festival that were originally scheduled to open in Amsterdam on 16 April. However, winners of this year’s Photo and Digital Storytelling Contests will still be announced on the evening of 16 April and shared globally through a wide range of online and media channels. Winning entries will also be shown in a worldwide tour that starts on 18 April. Click here to view confirmed exhibition locations.
Adobe has changed its Summit conference from a physical event that would have attracted more than 20,000 to an ‘online experience’, which is still expected to take place from 29 March to 2 April.
The Google Cloud Next ’20 conference, originally set for 6-8 April in San Francisco, has been changed from a physical event to a ‘free, global, digital-first, multiday experience’. The Google News Initiative, which would have brought several hundred media-industry personnel to Sunnyvale, California, in late April, has been cancelled.
The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) has postponed for the time being its annual NAB Show, which was due to take place in Las Vegas between 18 and 23 April, due to ongoing concerns surrounding COVID-19 (the coronavirus).
The annual TED Conference, scheduled to take place in Vancouver from April 20–24, will now either be held virtually or postponed until July.
The Game Developers Conference has been cancelled outright. Plans to re-boot it in the middle of the year will be announced in the coming weeks. The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has cancelled its annual E3 show, which is known worldwide for its glitzy press conferences and video game reveals and was scheduled for June 9-11 in Los Angeles.
The Facebook F8 Developers Conference, scheduled for 5-6 May has been cancelled.
The Swiss government has banned all public and private events involving more than 1,000 people until at least 15 March, This has led to the cancellation of the annual Geneva International Motor Show, the traditional Carnival procession in Basel, a ski marathon and several soccer matches. The London Book Fair, one of the world’s biggest international literary events, has been cancelled. A number of international music events and film festivals have also been called off or postponed until later in the year. Cinemas have also been closed in China, Italy and France, as have several theme parks in China and Japan.
Formula One has cancelled the Chinese Grand Prix, which was scheduled for 17-19 April. The World Athletics Indoor Championships in Nanjing, China, scheduled for March 13-15, has been postponed to March 2021. Many sporting events that have not been cancelled will be held in empty stadiums. For example, the Greek Olympic committee has closed its traditional Olympic Flame Lighting Ceremony on March 12 to the public. So far, the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, set for July 24-August 9, remains on track.
19/3/2020: The Eurovision song contest, one of the world’s largest television events which was due to take place in Rotterdam in May, and Britain’s Glastonbury Festival, scheduled for 24-28 June, have both been cancelled due to the global coronavirus outbreak. Tickets already purchased for the Glastonbury Festival will roll over to next year.
UPDATE 25/3/2020: The Tokyo Olympic Games, which were due to take place in July, have been postponed until 2021.