Coronavirus Forces Facebook to Cancel F8 Developer Conference
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Citing the coronavirus, Facebook is canceling F8, its annual developer conference.
“This was a tough call to make,” the company director Konstantinos Papamiltiadis wrote in a Thursday blog post. “But we need to prioritize the health and safety of our developer partners, employees, and everyone who helps put F8 on.”
The event, which features product announcements concerning Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, was slated to be held in San Jose, California, this April. However, the ongoing coronavirus outbreak has disrupting trade shows across the globe. The main obstacles have been worries the illness will spread through a show venue, along with the travel restrictions countries have put in place to contain the outbreak.
"We explored other ways to keep the in-person part of F8, but it’s important to us to host an inclusive event and it didn’t feel right to have F8 without our international developers in attendance," Papamiltiadis said.
In lieu of the event, Facebook is going to make F8 more of a virtual event that developers can attend online. “We’re planning other ways for our community to get together through a combo of locally hosted events, videos, and live streamed content. We’ll share additional details on our plans for F8 in the coming weeks,” Papamiltiadis added.
Another upcoming event that the coronavirus is disrupting is the Game Developers Conference, which will be held in San Franciso next month. Facebook, Sony, Electronic Arts, Unity, Microsoft, and Epic have all decided to bail from the event.