Will concerns over coronavirus lead South by Southwest in Austin to be canceled?
As concerns about the coronavirus increase across the globe, officials are weighing the safety risks of holding major annual events.
Facebook announced on Thursday that it is canceling F8, its biggest annual event, due to concerns over the coronavirus.
But what will happen at Texas' biggest tech event, South by Southwest? The annual tech, media and music festival in Austin, is still set to take place next month, officials say.
KSAT reported that SXSW has seen a handful of cancelations for their event. Here’s a statement they provided:
“The SXSW 2020 event is proceeding as planned. Safety is a top priority for SXSW, and we work closely with local, state, and federal agencies year-round to plan for a safe event. Where travel has been impacted, especially in the case of China, we are seeing a handful of cancellations. However, we are on par with years past in regard to registrants who are unable to attend. We are increasing our efforts to prevent the spread of disease per Austin Public Health’s recommendations. We will continue to monitor the situation closely and will provide updates as necessary.”
Fears over the coronavirus outbreak ballooned this week after the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it expects cases in the US to increase. The virus has now infected over 82,000 people around the world, with the most cases in China.
The ongoing spread of the coronavirus has caused other companies to close offices and stores in China. Mobile World Congress, one of the tech industry's biggest annual events, was called off earlier this month because of the outbreak.
CNN contributed to this report.
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