SXSW is Officially Canceled Because of Coronavirus
It’s official, the city of Austin just canceled South by Southwest or SXSW or SX because of the fucking coronavirus.
Austin's Mayor Steve Adler led a press conference just moments ago:
For those of you that are unfamiliar, SXSW is an annual two week long series of conferences and events in Austin that attracts visitors from around the world because it is awesome. There are three separate aspects of the conference: interactive, movies, music.
The festival starts the first few days with an interactive portion where all the big tech companies throw huge parties all around downtown Austin Texas to excite nerds with their new products. Start up tech companies will often use the conference as a launching pad as a little company called Twitter did in 2007. More on that here.
Prior to today’s cancellation the following companies had already cancelled from the interactive part of the conference: Twitter, Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Tik Tok, Mashable, Vevo, Intel
Once the tech nerds move out of town, the movie nerds slide right into the middle part of SXSW. This is probably the most challenging part of the conference to navigate if you don’t have a $2,000 badge and know what movies you want to see.
Prior to today’s cancellation the following companies had already cancelled from the movie part of the conference: Netflix, Lionsgate, Starz, WarnerMedia
The conference ends on a high note with the last four days officially being the music portion, even though there is music throughout SX. Thursday through Sunday the third week in March, you can go to pretty much any bar or restaurant and expect to see free live music and probably get free drinks from some vendor trying to get exposure. This year before the city canceled
Prior to today’s cancellation the following companies/bands had already cancelled from the music part of the conference: Ozzy Osbourne (good call here his lungs definitely too fragile for coronavirus) Universal Music Group and WarnerMusic, Sony
This is an absolutely devastating blow to Austin's pedicab economy in addition to other shadow industries in Austin, restaurants, hotels, etc.