Many companies and organizers are calling off events left and right due to ongoing coronavirus outbreak. Some, like the SXSW Festival next week, insists on pushing through despite how major participants like Apple and HBO are pulling out over health concerns. Just hours before it would have opened ticket sales, Minecraft has postponed its first-ever Minecraft Festival until next year. That despite the event not even happening until later in September.
Minecraft definitely planned a huge event, stepping up the ante from mere live-streamed MINECON, now called Minecraft Live, into days of shows, events, games, and shopping. It naturally expects hundreds of fans, influencers, and partners coming to the event from all over the world, which is undoubtedly the perfect conditions for a COVID-19 Petri dish.
Some might wonder if Mojang and Microsoft, Minecraft’s developer and owner, respectively, aren’t just being too paranoid. After all, the event isn’t happening until September and the virus has hopefully been handled by then. Whether that’s the case or not, however, might not matter for those who have to meet and work to actually prepare the event.
Minecraft explains that a large international event like Minecraft Festival naturally requires an international team, a team whose members can’t easily meet and work on location because of health risks and travel advisories. Rather than risk its first-ever Minecraft Festival going down in history as being insensitive both to organizers’ and participants’ well-being, they decided to just hold off until next year.
That said, Minecraft is also throwing fans a bone. MINECON or Minecraft Live, rather, is still pushing through. That has, in the past years, been live-streamed anyway, so there’s technically no change for 2020. Aside from the change of name, of course.