Coronavirus Threat Causes
Some Conventions to Cancel or Reschedule

Book fairs and sff conventions, like all public events, were already making decisions whether to proceed in the face of the coronavirus outbreak, but today’s World Health Organization announcement will step up the level of concern even higher. From the New York Times: “W.H.O. Declares Pandemic as Number of Infected Countries Grows”.

…“Pandemic is not a word to use lightly or carelessly,” Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, chief of the W.H.O., said at a news conference in Geneva.

“We cannot say this loudly enough or clearly enough or often enough,” he added. “All countries can still change the course of this pandemic.”

But now there is evidence on six continents of sustained transmission of the virus, which has infected more than 120,000 people and killed more than 4,300, and by most scientific measures the spread qualifies as a pandemic. The designation itself is largely symbolic, but public health officials know that the public will hear in the word elements of danger and risk.

PopCult HQ has been tracking 8 conventions worldwide that are planned for next weekend and as of yesterday, only two have been called off.

Seattle’s large Emerald City Comic Con, which was planned for March 12-15, announced on March 9 that it has been postponed until Summer 2020 (the date to be named later.)

Each year the Emerald City Comic Con team works their hardest to do right by the thousands of fans that come together in Seattle. We want to create a space for you to gather, be yourselves and make memories with those who matter to you most. We have been closely monitoring the situation around the COVID-19 virus in Seattle, and, after many hours of conversation internally and consultation with local government officials and the tourism bureau, we have decided to move next week’s Emerald City Comic Con to Summer 2020 with date and detail announcement forthcoming. We did everything that we could to run the event as planned, but ultimately, we are following the guidance of the local public health officials indicating that conventions should now be postponed.

The Manga Comic Con in Leipzig, Germany is part of the Leipzig Book Fair, which also will not take place. Public health policies contributed heavily to the decision:

…The Leipzig Public Health Office decided to follow the directive of the Federal Ministry of Health and the Federal Ministry of Economics, which states that the traceability of contact persons at major events must be guaranteed. The directive explicitly stipulated that every participant in the fair must provide written proof that he or she is not from any of the identified risk locations and has not had contact with people from such locations. Considering the approximately 2,500 exhibitors and 280,000 expected visitors, this was not a reasonable task. The health of our exhibitors, visitors, guests, partners and employees is our top priority. The City of Leipzig and Leipziger Messe have therefore decided to cancel the event entirely.

However, next weekend’s conventions in Canada, Ireland, and several U.S. cities east of the Mississippi are going forward.

On the other hand, the Burning Cat gaming con slated for May in Portland, OR has already canceled.

Not on PopCult HQ’s list, Consonance 2020, the Bay Area filk convention slated for March 20-22, has been cancelled. Chair Lynn Gold made the announcement today.   

And Perth, Australia’s Swancon 2020, calendared for April 25-27, has been called off. The convenors told Facebook followers, “This Really is The Darkest Timeline”:

In light of information from the Department of Health, the Western Australian Department of Health, and the advice of medical professionals in our community such as Dr Karen McKenna, the Convention Committee, Convention Steering Committee and WASFF Board have voted to cancel Swancon 2020.

Early projections indicate that the height of the pandemic is likely to be late April to early May, and as such we would be irresponsible to hold a large public gathering, regardless of the amount of hand sanitizer and tissues we provided.

The governor of Washington state today set a policy banning large gatherings in three counties which could impact Norwescon“Inslee orders halt on large gatherings in Seattle region, asks schools to prepare for closure, to slow coronavirus spread”

Flanked by the leaders of Seattle, Tacoma and Everett, and of King, Pierce and Snohomish counties, Inslee said he was ordering the cancellation of large church services, sporting events, concerts, festivals and conventions.

“Today I am ordering, pursuant to my emergency powers, that certain events in King, Snohomish and Pierce counties with more than 250 people are prohibited by order of the governor,” Inslee said, at a King County government building in downtown Seattle. The three counties are “experiencing significant community transmission, significant outbreaks and they are large population centers.”

The order is in effect through the end of March, Inslee said, but it is “highly likely” it will be extended beyond that time.

Norwescon is scheduled for April 9-12. The convention committee has posted this response:

The Executive team is aware of the March 11 announcement by WA Gov. Inslee regarding COVID-19 containment plans. We are in active discussion within the Executive team and with the hotel to determine our best options. We will provide updates as soon as possible, but do need some time to coordinate. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we do our best to adjust to a quickly moving situation.

BALANCING ACT. Where public health officials have not yet instituted any restrictions, few events can unilaterally cancel without jeopardizing their future.

The International Association For The Fantastic In The Arts, in “COVID-19, Cancellations, and Credits/Refunds”, said their economic survival would be in doubt if they cancelled the event, therefore ICFA 41 will still take place March 18-21 in Florida.

The conference will meet. We have to meet certain guaranteed minimums for room occupancy, food and beverage expenditures, etc., specified in our contract with the hotel, or pay out of pocket. It is not an exaggeration to say that cancellation would jeopardize the very existence of the IAFA.

All conrunners have a recent example in Arisia of what happens when penalty clauses kick in because an event has been cancelled for reasons outside the provisions of their facilities contracts.

In that vein, after conferring with their hotel the chairs of UK’s Eastercon, Concentric 2020, planned for April 10-13, put out this statement on March 8:  

The Eastercon committee met with the Hilton on Friday and discussed with them the concerns of the Eastercon membership. We asked about their policies on refunds for the event and any rooms booked with the potential issues from Covid-19. The Hilton have confirmed to the committee that, as the government’s stance at this point is business as usual, they will not be offering any additional or exceptional circumstances towards bookings that have already been made.

We have discussed if there would be any possibility of a change in their stance on this matter. We have been advised that the only time at which there would be a change would be if running the convention would be either impossible or illegal due to requirements put in place either from the Government or from an authorised public body such as Public Health England or the World Health Organisation….

Pittsburgh’s furry fandom Anthrocon (July 2-5) has also been consulting with and monitoring information from public health agencies, and in a March 9 statement said they plan to go on with the con:

At this time, there is no intention of canceling or delaying the Anthrocon 2020 convention. None of the agencies listed above has advised either course of action. We continue to monitor the situation daily, however, and should circumstances warrant either a cancellation or rescheduling, we will issue that announcement without delay on our web site and through all of our social media outlets. Please be patient. None of us can predict the course that this epidemic will take, and to what extent – or even if – it will be a concern in July. Our only choice is to rely on the advice of the medical professionals who are best situated to offer such advice.

At this time, no U.S. medical agency is advising travelers to cancel plans to travel to Western Pennsylvania, whereas of this date no cases of COVID-19 have been reported.

Today, the SFWA Board of Directors today said the Nebula Conference (May 28-31) is going forward, because of the penalties that would result from cancellation: “A Message from SFWA Regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19)”.

…At the moment, SFWA is planning to hold the conference with adjustments to reduce the risks of spreading the virus. The SFWA Board and the Nebula Conference events team are talking about this evolving situation daily including the possibility that things may shift enough that we need to cancel the in-person event. We will continue to monitor the situation and make adjustments.

The Nebulas are 80 days away and every day brings us a better understanding of what’s happening with COVID-19.

Our challenge is that the hotel will not allow us to cancel the event without paying penalties unless it is “illegal or impossible” to host it. Similarly, they will not offer us any refunds. This limits our choices. With that said, the board’s priority in decision-making still remains with the health and safety of our attendees and by extension their families.

The chairs of CoNZealand, the 2020 Worldcon, Norman Cates and Kelly Buehler made this public statement on March 6:

Although New Zealand has not been affected by Covid-19 to the extent of the rest of the world, our government and the NZ Ministry of Health have extensive civil defence plans. We are monitoring the situation and will be prepared for what the future brings.

As usual, we strongly advise all members purchase their own comprehensive travel insurance for any foreign travel, including cancellation insurance. If you have already purchased insurance for your journey to New Zealand, we recommend that you check the full terms with your insurance provider.

We are in touch with the Ministry of Health as well as with our venue planning managers. We want everyone to have a safe and healthy convention, and we will be following best practices.

CRUISE SHIPS. While the Canadian government’s coronavirus disease guidance warns citizens to avoid all cruise ship travel, and the United States’ Center for Disease Control recommends cruise ship travel be deferred, N.K. Jemisin, Rebecca Roanhorse, Patrick Rothfuss, John Scalzi, and Martha Wells are among the many pop culture guests currently aboard the 2020 JoCo Cruise, which ends March 13.

READINGS: The Fantastic Fiction at KGB readings series today canceled its March event with guests Daniel Braum & Robert Levy, promising instead, “both authors will be reading their work over an online livestream at the same scheduled date and time (March 18th, 7pm). Details on that livestream will be forthcoming.”

BOOK FAIRS. Outside of fandom, a series of publishing industry events have shuttered or rescheduled due to the withdrawal of participating book companies and sponsors.

The National Book Critics Circle in New York has canceled both its finalists reading on Wednesday, March 11, and its awards ceremony on Thursday, March 12. The Tucson (AZ) Festival of Books, which was planned for March 14-15, has canceled. 

The Los Angeles Times has postponed its Festival of Books and Food Bowl events, “in light of public health concerns related to the coronavirus and out of an abundance of caution.” “Los Angeles Times postpones Festival of Books and Food Bowl due to coronavirus concerns “

The 25th Festival of Books, originally scheduled for April, will now take place the weekend of Oct. 3-4 on the USC campus. The 4th Food Bowl, previously set for May, will also be moved to the fall, with dates to be announced later.

While the Book Prizes awards ceremony will not be held this year, honorees and winners will still be acknowledged via an announcement to be released on April 17.

With Italy already a center of the outbreak, publishers are shying away from the Bologna Book Fair:

Penguin Random House has become the second of the Big Five U.S. publishers to announce it would not attend this year’s rescheduled Bologna Children’s Book Fair, scheduled for May 4–7,

Shelf Awareness has a growing list of book fairs and bookstore events that have been called off, or adjusted their plans: “COVID-19 Update: More Cancellations & Postponements”.

SHOW UP BUT KEEP YOUR DISTANCE. Events that are proceeding have instituted whatever safety measures they think are appropriate.

UPDATE: Ace Comic Con Northeast (March 20-22), which had publicized their decision to go on, has now cancelled. Note that the following segment was written before the announcement.

Despite fannish complaints, ACE Comic Con Northeast is running March 20-22 in Boston, and chirpily told the Boston Globe: “ACE Comic Con is still on. Just don’t touch the Chrises (Hemsworth or Evans).”

…Ace Comic Con, which is hosting a Northeast fan event from March 20-22 at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, will go on as planned, despite coronavirus concerns, according to organizers. That said, there are some new rules regarding social distancing, posted on ACE’s Facebook page:

“During Photo Ops & Autographs – Handshakes, hugs, requests to hold props during Photo Ops, and physical contact will not be permitted. No gifts, letters, or cards will be accepted by celebrity guests so we ask that you do not bring in those items.

…Of course, some have fans have posted complaints on Facebook. They bought special autograph packages expecting to get hugs and handshakes from stars.

“I am coming from FL and I wanted a hug from both Chris’. Now I’m gonna stand side by side with them? How is that fair? … I honestly don’t want to come anymore,” one Facebook user said.

FALLOUT. The economic consequences from not holding events will ripple far beyond the hotels and committees. For example, the SXSW cancellation has caused major layoffs:

On March 6, SXSW canceled its 2020 festival due to concerns surrounding the recent coronavirus outbreak. It marked the first cancellation in the annual Austin event’s 34-year history. Now, SXSW’s parent company SXSW LLC has laid off roughly a third of its 175 year-round employees, according to a new report by local paper the Austin American-Statesman,

DECISION TIME. To hold the con or not?

Nerd & Tie’s Trae Dorn agrees that “Every Convention Staff Needs to Have the COVID-19 Conversation”.

…The fact is we are dealing with a disease where it’s possible that some infected people can be contagious while appearing healthy for weeks. Transmission happens when people are in close proximity, and since this is a new form of the disease, odds are if you’re exposed you’re going to get it. And you can talk about how mortality rates as a percentage are only slightly higher than the flu, a lot of people don’t get the flu. There are plenty of people who walk our convention halls who have a good chance of dying if they get infected.

I don’t know about you, but I’m a fan of having none of my convention’s attendees die.

So yeah, it’s time to talk. How drastic your conversation is depends on how bad things are where you are physically along with who might come to your event. If you’re an event like SXSW where people come from all over the world… consider not holding your event immediately. Postpone it if you can, but no event is worth people’s lives. If you’re a regional event, you need to look at the landscape. If you’re in a city or area with an active outbreak, do not hold your event, I beg of you.

And Chuck Wendig has written several virus-related blog posts in the past 10 days, beginning with “Running A Con, Conference Or Festival In The Age Of A Burgeoning Pandemic!” These are things that convention guests will have on their minds:

e) Recognize that we’re probably anxious about this. Many of us will go to our events via two or more airports, likely international ones. We will then be at your event with hundreds to thousands of people. If we’re writers, we’re gonna be theoretically up close and personal with folks, signing their books, some want photos — and trust me, writers are already a pretty anxious lot. Our brains are carousels of crawling ants. We’re already imagining worse case scenarios. (Seriously, have you read Wanderers?) You talking to us about that before we have to talk to you about it would be very nice.

f) Recognize too we don’t want to get stuck anywhere. We have families! Pets! Extreme introversion! Note that some people who have traveled overseas have found themselves in exactly this scenario. Best case scenario, it’s a travel delay. Worst case, it’s full restriction or quarantine. Who knows how the fuck this current administration will bungle this up — they might not do anything, or they might clamp down hard when it’s not needed. Either way? We don’t wanna find out. So, what happens if it does? Are you gonna cover our hotels if we’re guests? One night? Ten? Certainly your responsibility ends somewhere, but I’d sure like you to be thinking about that.

Right now, all the choices are hard.

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39 thoughts on “Coronavirus Threat Causes
Some Conventions to Cancel or Reschedule

  1. Well truthfully, I thought when Scalzi said he was off on that cruise that he was being a little too carefree about it. It’s not as though there weren’t plenty of warnings as well as TWO practical examples of the hell a cruise ship can turn into in a health crisis. It shouldn’t require an official notice from the state department to figure it out. I just hope they’ll be among the lucky ones.

  2. Consonance (March 20–22 in San Jose) has been postponed, with no set future date. In this case the hotel was willing to accept force majeure, due to the ban from Santa Clara County on events over 1,000 participants. Consonance is much smaller, but I believe the hotel here judged good long-term relations to the con more important than strict interpretations of contracts.

  3. People keep asking me whether I’m scared to go on my TAFF delegate trip, and oddly enough, I am not. I trust the common sense of fandom more than I do mundane governments and institutions; and none of the fans slated to host me have withdrawn their invitations. See you in Stockholm, Turku, Helsinki, Warsaw, Katowice, Krakow, Madrid, Barcelona, London and/or Birmingham!

  4. I have to admit I was a little surprised that the JoJo cruise went ahead, because cruise ships can become dangerous very quickly in situations like these. And while cruise ships have medical facilities and even morgues on board, those facilities will be easily overwhelmed in case of an epidemic outbreak.

    As for the Leipzig Book Fair and Manga-Con, the Leipzig Book Fair is one of the oldest in the world and was established in the 16th century, when it was split off from the general Leipzig trade fair, which goes back to an Imperial decree in 1497. In the more than four hundred years of its existence, the Leipzig Book Fair has been cancelled only four times. Once during the Thirty Years’ War, when the Battle of Breitenfeld (which Filers may know from Eric Flint’s 1632 books) was happening right outside the city gates, where the exhibition facilities are these days. Then, it was cancelled again in 1813, when the Peoples’ Battle, one of the biggest battles of the Napoleonic Wars, took place right outside the city gates in – yup – Breitenfeld again. I privately suspect that they eventually built the exhibition facilities in Breitenfeld to keep armies from holding book fair disturbing battles there. The third time the Leipzig Book Fair was cancelled was in 1945, when the city was in ruins, and they did hold the fair in autumn that year. The fourth time is now, because of the corona virus epidemic.

    I’m not sure if that cancellation is justified, since Saxony only has a hadnful of cases so far. Meanwhile, a football match with 50000 people was allowed to go ahead some 30 kilometres from the epicentre of the German corona outbreak last weekend. The way I understand it, the management and exhibitors wanted to go ahead with the Leipzig Book Fair, but the state of Saxony and city of Leipzig panicked, as with South by Southwest. There also was a lot more public outcry about the cancellation of sport events (and the football matches will still take place, just without spectators) than about cancelling cultural events and trade fairs.

    I’m in favour of deciding on a case by case basis whether to cancel, reschedule or go ahead. Because the financial impact of cancelling events is huge and not just for the organisers. Here in Europe, some of the people hit hardest by event cancellations due to corona are small clubs, theatres, bands, booth builders, caterers and conference interpreters. Many of these are freelancers or small businesses who won’t get the bailouts that airlines and hotels get and to whom the relaxed rules regarding partial unemployment don’t apply.

  5. @Michael J. Lowrey
    Most of those places with the possible exception of Madrid and Barcelona should still be safe, at least for now. And common sense is always advisable.

    Enjoy your TAFF trip, even under these less than ideal conditions.

  6. Trump just announced he’s suspending all travel between the US and Europe, except for the UK.

    Assuming he doesn’t change his mind three hours from now, this will obviously affect some people’s convention-related plans; one more thing for concoms to add to the calculations.

  7. IMEstimate, SXSW laying off ~60 people is trivial next to the number of low-wage workers who will get furloughed (at least) due to canceled hotel bookings and empty restaurants.

    ICFA is going to be less international (I’d heard the announcement @Vicki Rosenzweig reports); maybe their facility will see sense.

    I’m glad to see ACE and the BCEC (and probably hotels) came to a sensible conclusion; running a monster convention in a modern (i.e., well-insulated) facility became a bad idea weeks before they sorted this. I already have one friend in voluntary self-isolation, probably due to the Biogen idiocy, and hope not to have others.

    Meanwhile, An Tir (Pacific Northwest kingdom of the SCA) announced first a 3-week shutdown of activities of all sizes, then an indefinite shutdown. Eadgyth and I are hoping they’ll be able to weather this, as the governor’s proclamation is unlikely to cover many events due to size and location minima. The money involved is probably an order or so of magnitude less than for a fannish convention — but that applies to income as well as expenses; many of the eastern groups I know don’t have a lot of reserves.

    @Vicki Rosenzweig: nice how he’s excepting his clone from the ban.

  8. All countries will be closing their borders soon. Look to Italy’s lockdown coming to your country within 2 weeks. If your event can’t operate under those rules, focus on venue relations and insurance claims. Get your membership to rally round so its not organisers who are out of pocket, else no-one will take on the risk in future.

    NZ might get away with it, no new cases for 6 days, and such glorious isolation. But that won’t help Worldcon, as the revrerberations of this won’t die down fast enough

  9. Cora Buhlert: I didn’t know anything about the history of the Leipzig Book Fair, and I thought what you wrote about it was really interesting.

  10. Leprecon is still set to take place next month in Chandler (Phoenix Metro area), but it’s unlikely Hilde or I will be showing up. Our average age is 70, both of us are recovering from recent respiratory infections, plus I’m thinking by next month going to public gatherings will be highly frowned upon.

    Going was already iffy, since it would involve either a lot of drive time –we’re about fifty miles away– or the extra expense and trouble of a hotel room.

    (Man, I remember when I first started going to cons, it was just toss a change or two of clothing into a bag, have some cash handy –my first con, 1973, cost me less than $50 for the entire weekend– and hop into your car and drive for hours with little concern or fatigue.)

  11. I’ve also been planning to attend Leprecon, but the last thing I need is to end up quarantined a state away from my cats. I’ll be fretting all the way down to the cancellation date for the hotel reservation.

  12. I find the idea that people were buying tickets to hug two strangers massively creepy to begin with, regardless of virus scares.

  13. Everything is cancelled in Sweden. It is not individual decisions, it is a government limit on a maximum of 250 persons in public gatherings.

  14. As for the Leipzig Book Fair and Manga-Con, the Leipzig Book Fair is one of the oldest in the world and was established in the 16th century

    Presumably it was the Leipzig Book Fair and Ukiyo-e Print-Con back then.

  15. I am starting to worry that going to Worldcon is not going to Happen. Even more so, this is going to potentially screw up DUFF and GUFF

  16. I’m a 73-year-old with diabetes. Currently not planning to go outside my apartment for much of anything for the immediate future. Thank Ghu for the internet!

  17. LATITUDE ZERO is a dreadful film, even lacking any camp values. The acting pitch is high and over the top.

  18. @Paul —

    I wouldn’t panic too much yet about things happening later in the year. This is a fast-moving pandemic, which — crossing lots of fingers! — may mean that it has blown over, through, and past us by then.

    Just a coupla days ago I bought tickets to a Tommy Emmanuel (look him up!) concert that isn’t happening til September. With luck, we’ll be through all this by late summer and fall.

  19. Ireland
    BREAKING: Varadkar announces Ireland will go into lockdown from 6pm today until March 29

    “Schools, colleges and child care facilities will close from tomorrow. Where possible teaching will done online or remotely.

    “Cultural institutions will close as well. Our advice is that all indoor mass gatherings of more than 100 people, and outdoor mass gatherings of more than 500 people should be cancelled.

    “Arrangements are being made to make sure that everyone entering Ireland through ports and airports is fully informed and self-isolates if they develop symptoms.”

    He added that the public should “work from home where possible” and that face-to-face interactions should be reduced by holding meetings online or over the phone.

  20. Marriott just announced that it has shut down the Boston hotel where the infamous Biogen conference responsible for (at least) 75% of the Boston coronavirus cases was held.

    I wonder if their lawyers will go after Biogen the same way they went after Arisia.

  21. @Bruce Arthurs: oh yes, I remember those days — driving two days, at least 26 hours on the road (including repair stops both days) to get to MAC, staying up until 5am 4 nights running, then driving back. Never did that again. “Jugend, teure Jugend, flohest mir da hin” (anon, set by Brahms) contrasts with “Wouldn’t you like to be young again?” “No thanks — once was enough” (Sondheim? Goldman?).

    @Contrarius: what justifies your belief that this is a fast-moving pandemic? The rise is quick, yes — but will the fall be quick in countries that haven’t allocated the resources to cope with it? (In the worst cases, will those countries be in ruins, unable to host anything?) From what I’ve seen, the best hope is that the rise won’t be as quick, so the cases get spread enough that hospitals aren’t overwhelmed — and I’m not betting on it happening in the US, given the Cheeto’s lies and the noise and idiocy from his sycophants.

    And CoNZealand’s advice may have come too late; the BBC reports that two underwriters are no longer selling travel insurance. We’ll see how many follow them, and how quickly.

  22. @Chip —

    @Contrarius: what justifies your belief that this is a fast-moving pandemic? The rise is quick, yes — but will the fall be quick in countries that haven’t allocated the resources to cope with it?

    We can’t tell for sure, of course, and obviously the individual countries’ responses will have a huge impact. But the course of the disease in China, for instance, looks like a rapid rise in cases followed by a rapid fall. We can hope that the pattern will be similar elsewhere, though obviously we can’t predict that will happen.

    Remember what I said in my previous post — crossing lots of fingers!

  23. @Jon Meltzer: that depends on whether they think they can claim that Biogen violated the contract — and I doubt there’s a clause that can be twisted to read that Biogen represented its employees as healthy. (Even if there’s a moral-turpitude clause, I doubt even the corrupt arbitrator who awarded against Arisia would consider it material.) That would leave Marriott the option of an actual lawsuit — and going after someone more in their weight class is something they’re likely to be wary of.

    Meanwhile, ICFA has canceled in spite of contract worries — the message includes “We now must enter into negotiations with the hotel to try to minimize the financial damage.”

  24. Paul Weimer on March 12, 2020 at 6:37 am said:

    I am starting to worry that going to Worldcon is not going to Happen. Even more so, this is going to potentially screw up DUFF and GUFF

    There have only been five cases in New Zealand so far and they have had no new confirmed cases for a few days. On the one hand that is obviously good news for NZ but on the other hand, it means things will peak later in NZ than say the US or UK. So Worldcon isn’t out of the woods yet.

    I’ve read estimates of the peak in Australia being anywhere from April to July but events this week make me think we’ll see major closures of things sooner rather than later in Australia (i.e. April, May). I would imagine NZ would be a bit later than that. Of course the later the course of the virus runs in a country the better the understanding public health officials have and the more time they have to prepare.

  25. Cleveland ConCoction, a fan-run convention scheduled for March 20-22, has been cancelled.

  26. That’s pretty flippant stuff from Jemison. I’d save the eyerolls for after a healthy return myself.

  27. Publishers Lunch reports:

    On Thursday the Bologna Book Fair acknowledged the inevitable and cancelled their rescheduled show, which they had hoped to hold in early May. They say they “are working to recreate online the atmosphere and the business and networking opportunities that are so much part of our book fair,” with more details to come.

  28. Pingback: Convention Cancellations Accelerate as Public Health Restrictions Announced | File 770

  29. BSFS is halting registration and applications for dealers/artists at Balticon. They will report later when more is known, but if the con is cancelled, will rollover memberships, etc., to 2021.

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  31. Balticon has been cancelled – I’ve attended every Balticon from 1998 to the present, so I’m a little bummed.

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