Coronavirus Crashes Facebook, Mobile World Congress Conferences, IBM Pulls Out

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Owing to the outbreak of coronavirus, Facebook had to cancel its approaching global marketing conference out of caution, according to Reuters.The event was scheduled from March 9-12 set to take place at San Francisco’s Moscone Center. Over 5,000 participants were expected to attend the summit.

A Facebook spokesperson in a statement said, “Health and safety of our teams is our priority, so out of an abundance of caution, we are cancelling our Global Marketing Summit due to growing public life threats associated with coronavirus”. 

The Facebook announcement comes on the heels of this week’s cancellation of the flagship Mobile World Congress Barcelona 2020 conference, also because of coronavirus apprehensions. 

Due to the MWC’s cancellation announcement, several vendors, including Sony, Amazon, LG, Nvidia, Intel, Vivo, Ericsson, NTT Docomo, BT, HMD, Cisco, and Nokia, all backed out from the event over fears of jeopardizing attendees.

Moreover, IBM said it will no longer be participating in the RSA cybersecurity conference scheduled from February 24-28 due to concerns over China virus outbreak.

Not only this, there are a number of other events that got postponed or cancelled due to the dangerous virus outbreak. Some of them include:

  • Chinese Grand Prix
  • Asia summit – Black Hat information security conference
  • London Metal Exchange’s Asian conference in Hong Kong
  • Art Basel’s annual art fair

The novel coronavirus that originated in the Wuhan area of China in December 2019 has so far infected more than 49,000 people and led to the death of 1,383 people to date. Furthermore, it has spread to more than 25 countries, raising high alerts and safety concerns and impacting businesses in various parts of the world.

Coronavirus is causing numerous adverse effects on the wide-ranging industries, leading to store closures, production shortages, and manufacturing suspensions. 

However, the World Health Organization states that the virus does not seem to be spreading widely in other countries besides China. Hence, the authority has not made a recommendation to cancel meetings outside of China.