Late last week it was announced that the City of Austin had cancelled SXSW 2020, which was due to start in little over one week, due to concerns around the Covid-19 coronavirus.
The decision was evidently a reversal on a statement made by Austin Public Health just days earlier, reflecting the rapid escalation of concern globally about the risks of public gathering transmission. It comes with the promise from SXSW organisers that efforts will be made to reschedule the event and to provide a virtual SXSW online experience as soon as possible.
‘We honour and respect the City of Austin’s decision. We are committed to do our part to help protect our staff, attendees, and fellow Austinites.
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. For our registrants, clients, and participants we will be in touch as soon as possible and will publish an FAQ.
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.”
A number of businesses in Austin have come together under the name “Banding Together ATX” with the goal to keep as many artists as possible coming to Austin, attempting to re-home cancelled showcases and give financial relief to anyone who might be out of thousands of dollars.’