My apologies for the newsletter being late this morning. Ironically, I am battling a cold. So here’s today’s rundown:
TwitchCon Amsterdam Cancelled Due To Coronavirus Concerns
Just as I was getting ready to send this newsletter, this news came in. Twitch is pulling the plug on TwitchCon Amsterdam, scheduled for May 2nd-3rd:
We have been monitoring Coronavirus concerns and having weighed the potential health risks to our community we’ve made the incredibly difficult decision to cancel TwitchCon Amsterdam.
TwitchCon is the best weekend to be a Twitch fan. To say we’re disappointed you won’t be able to enjoy the show we’ve been building for you is a massive understatement. But the health and safety of our community, employees, and everyone else who has a part in making TwitchCon happen is, as always, our top priority.
Eurovision 2020 May Be In Jeopardy
While Eurovision 2020 isn’t set to take place until May 16th in Rotterdam, the EBU (European Broadcasting Union) is “looking at various scenarios” as the virus continues to plague the globe. In a statement released on Thursday, the organization responsible for organizing the long-running singing competition said “We will continue to follow developments across Europe; and are looking at various possible scenarios together with the Eurovision Song Contest 2020 host broadcasters NPO, NOS and AVROTROS.”
ITV Forecasts 10% Drop In Advertising Revenues Due To Coronavirus
UK television giant released its full-year financial results to investors on Thursday and the company said it expects to see total advertising revenue was grow 2% in the first quarter. That’s down from analysts estimates of 3.3% & ITV attributes the slump to an advertising slowdown is Asia. The company also reports seeing a slump in movie-related advertising, especially following the delay in the release of the new James Bond film, as well as a decrease in travel-related advertising.
Rick Steves Cancels Tours To Italy
Travel expert and PBS fixture Rick Steves said on Thursday that his company has canceled four tours to Italy scheduled March 1st through March 31st. "We are contacting all travelers booked on these tours and will provide 100% refunds within two weeks, in compliance with the law," Steves wrote Monday on his website.
"I mean, my first reaction is, well that's a heartbreak for all the people who had these long-laid plans for a beautiful vacation in Italy," Steves told the Edmunds Beacon. "I feel really bad about that. I feel bad about leaving our hotels without anybody there. I feel really bad about our guides that just lost that employment. And I'm not really very happy about losing the profit that comes with that."
Premier League Dispenses With Pre-Match Handshakes Due To Coronavirus Fears
Another sporting ritual is temporarily on hold. Professional soccer’s Premier League announced late Thursday there will be no pre-match handshakes at games until further notice due to the coronavirus outbreak":
"Coronavirus is spread via droplets from the nose and mouth and can be transmitted on to the hands and passed on via a handshake," the Premier League said in a statement.
"Clubs and match officials will still perform the rest of the traditional walk-out protocol ahead of each fixture.
"On entering the field of play, the two teams will continue to line up, accompanied by the Premier League music, then players from the home team will walk past their opposition without shaking their hands."
Odds & Sods
Miami’s Ultra Music Festival has been postponed amid coronavirus fears. The three-day event was set to begin Match 20th. Performers were to include David Guetta, The Chainsmokers, Afrojack, Cash Cash, Martin Garrix and Galantis.
Ozzy Osbourne has cancelled plans to appear at SXSW. He was set to be there to support the world premiere screening of Biography: the Nine Lives of Ozzy Osbourne, which is set to air on A&E this summer.
The upcoming Minecraft Festival in Orlando has been canceled and it’s a very pro-active move given it wasn’t set to take place until September and tickets hadn’t even started being sold for the event.
ITV has pulled the travel series “Phillip Schofield’s How to Spend It Well on Holiday” from its schedule, citing coronavirus concerns. The first episode was due to focus on the Mediterranean, where Phillip was going to give out tips on how to get the best car-rental deals while John Torode and Lisa Faulkner were travelling to the South of France to see if you can eat out without spending loads of money.