Facebook has been taking drastic steps in its fight to stop the spread of COVID-19, along with introducing new features to its social media platform to stop misinformation about the virus from being shared.
Now the company is taking further steps, with CEO Mark Zuckerberg posting on the platform about how Facebook will be handling its events over the next year or so.
To that end, he explains that all events that were planned, and expected to have 50 or more people in attendance, have been cancelled up until June of 2021.
“We’re canceling any large physical events we had planned with 50 or more people through June 2021. Some of these we will hold as virtual events instead and we’ll share more details on that soon. Similarly, we’re extending our policy of no business travel through at least June of this year as well,” Zuckerberg writes.
One of the events that will be impacted is Oculus Connect 7, which is still happening later this year, but the virtual reality-focused event is going to be digital.
“This was a tough decision to make, but we need to prioritize the health and safety of our developer partners, employees, and everyone involved in OC7. Oculus Connect gives us an unprecedented opportunity to connect with our global developer community. OC7 will be no exception, and we look forward to sharing more details about the digital event in the coming months,” Oculus noted in recent update.
Given the size and reach of Facebook, the move makes a lot of sense, and with curve yet to flatten on COVID-19 globally, taking any unnecessary risk at this stage with large gatherings is ill advised.
It is indeed a tough decision for a tech company like Facebook to take, and it should be interesting to see if Silicon Valley’s other big tech firms adopt a similar approach.
We’ve also reached out to Facebook Africa about the announcement, and in particular wish to find out if annual events organised on the continent will be following a similar approach to the one outlined by Zuckerberg.
Once we receive feedback, we’ll be sure to inform Hypertext readers.