In-person events: So much for 2022 being the year that the marketing event biz got back to normal. CES slogged through this week but was plagued by last-minute cancellations and a truncated schedule as a result of the COVID case surge. Other events taking a hit include the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3)—the gaming industry’s largest trade show—which announced this week it was axing plans for its in-person gathering this summer. All eyes are now on the National Retail Federation’s Big Show, which will still continue in person as planned from Jan. 16 through Jan. 18.
CES’s woes did not stop U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow from putting a positive spin on the event. “By staging an influential live event that safely convenes thousands of global professionals across the technology, business and political spectrum, CES is nothing short of a model for how business trade events can and should take place in 2022. It is our sincere hope that other professional event organizers will follow their lead this year,” he stated.
The praise might be a bit premature, considering the usual lag in COVID test positive results after large gatherings.
Read more: How brands and agencies are dealing with COVID resurgence—a regularly updated list
Golden Globes: What used to be one of Hollywood’s most fun nights—and a significant marketing opportunity for brands—is now nothing of the sort. As The Hollywood Reporter reports, the Globes, held Sunday, won’t have TV coverage, or even a live stream, and will “not feature a red carpet, celebrity guests, industry insiders or the typical hoopla and bustling afterparty scene inside the Beverly Hilton Hotel that has come to define the Golden Globes for years.” The show has been under fire in the wake of a Los Angeles Times investigation that revealed the organization behind the event suffered from a lack of diversity and ethical issues.
Cruise lines: The hits keep coming for the cruise industry. As the omicron variant continued its wave across the country, nearly 100 cruise ships reported confirmed or suspected COVID-19 on board, according to a report from Insider. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention investigates, many lines are canceling trips in a frenzy reminiscent of early 2020. Those marketers reporting positive cases include Norwegian, Disney, Carnival and Princess.
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