Mashable and Intel are the latest brands to pull out of SXSW due to mounting coronavirus concerns. Yet, the festival insists the show will go on.
Media company Mashable had plans to once again activate its annual Mashable House at the festival—2020 would have been its 11th consecutive year hosting its MashBash party to close out the first weekend. The tech, music and film festival in Austin, Texas is slated for March 13-22.
“We have decided to cancel our 2020 Mashable House and MashBash in Austin during SXSW, due to the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak,” Eva Smith, senior VP of sales and marketing solutions of parent company Ziff Media Group, said in a statement. “With so much enthusiasm and engagement surrounding our event, canceling is a very tough call. However, the health and safety of our teams, partners and guests is, as always, our number one priority. We are actively developing new, exciting programs for our trusted partners, who share our commitment to educating consumers around sustainability.”
Smith could not be reached for further comment and Mashable declined to say whether it would be refunded by SXSW, noting that the company does not discuss “specific business details.”
Meanwhile, Intel confirmed it is also pulling out the festival. “After careful consideration, we have withdrawn from on-site activities at this year’s SXSW,” said an Intel spokesperson. “We are grateful to SXSW for their understanding and look forward to attending and supporting future events.”
News of Mashable and Intel canceling their SXSW plans follows Facebook and music-video-streaming company Vevo—the joint-venture video-hosting service backed by major labels Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment and EMI—pulling out on Monday evening. On Sunday, Twitter also announced that it canceled its SXSW house and CEO Jack Dorsey would no longer attend for a prominent speaking slot that had been scheduled.