Facebook cancels F8 developer conference over coronavirus fears

David Murphy

Facebook’s F8 developer conference has become the latest big event to fall victim to the coronavirus, with the social media giant cancelling the tech get-together, due to take place on 5-6 May at the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose.

In a statement, Facebook said: “Every year, we look forward to connecting with our global developer community at F8 and sharing our vision for the future that we’re building together. But given the growing concerns around COVID-19, we’ve made the difficult decision to cancel the in-person component of F8 2020.

“This was a tough call to make – F8 is an incredibly important event for Facebook and it’s one of our favorite ways to celebrate all of you from around the world – but we need to prioritize the health and safety of our developer partners, employees and everyone who helps put F8 on.

"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.”
Facebook said that in place of the in-person F8 event, it is planning other ways for its community to get together, via a combination of locally-hosted events, videos and live streamed content.

Facebook has also cancelled its Global Marketing Summit, which was due to take place in San Francisco in March. Elsewhere, the Geneva Motor Show, a key event for the automtotive industry, due to take place between 5 - 15 March in Geneva, has also been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.