Though it was only yesterday that we reported on PlayStation’s decision to withdraw from PAX East due to concerns regarding the potential danger of Coronavirus, the company has now announced that it will also be removing itself from the upcoming Game Developers Conference due to the exact same reason. In this instance, Facebook And Oculus have decided to follow in PlayStation’s footsteps, and will also not be present.
Making a statement to Gamesindustry.biz, PlayStation said “We have made the difficult decision to cancel our participation in Game Developers Conference due to increasing concerns related to COVID-19 (also known as coronavirus). We felt this was the best option as the situation related to the virus and global travel restrictions are changing daily. We are disappointed to cancel our participation, but the health and safety of our global workforce is our highest concern. We look forward to participating in GDC in the future.”
Facebook (who owns Oculus) also claimed similarly, saying “Out of concern for the health and safety of our employees, our dev partners, and the GDC community, Facebook will not be attending this year’s Game Developer Conference due to the evolving public health risks related to COVID-19,” though the company offered some solace in saying that “[w]e still plan to share the exciting announcements we had planned for the show through videos, online Q&As, and more, and will plan to host GDC partner meetings remotely in the coming weeks.”
As of writing, Coronavirus has infected over 75,000 people, leading to over 2000 deaths. Though only 15 cases of the virus have been reported in the US (where GDC takes place) companies seem to have decided to take an extra careful approach to the virus – especially due to its contagious nature. GDC is set to take place between the 16th and 20th of March.
KitGuru says: What do you think of all these companies withdrawing from events due to fears over Coronavirus? Are you disappointed? What do you think the best solution and compromise would be? Let us know down below.