With Emerald City Comic Con, at this moment in time, still planning to go ahead over March 12th – 15th, with over 100,000 fans in attendance, there’s starting to be rumblings amongst guests and publishers alike with concerns about the spread of coronavirus rife.
We posed the question whether it should go ahead or not, and while it seems that it will go ahead – for now – it would seem that a small number of the comic book guests – and publishers – are voting with their feet.
Is the just the beginning, I have to ask myself? And, will it be the guests themselves cancelling that finally gets ReedPOP to close it’s doors and not because it may well be the right thing to do? If so, it won’t be a good look for them, as it could very easily be claimed that they’re putting profits over people.
Having said that, there are still an awful lot more people and guests still willing to visit ECCC this year, seeing this as an exaggerated threat. But, will that still be the case in a few days time? After all, only the other day, Jim Zub announced that he was still going, only to now have changed his mind along with Dark Horse and Del-Rey Publishing cancelling too.
Plus, ReedPOP have said they will be following government guidelines as this outbreak develops. So, it may be out fo their hands eventually anyway.
Who will be next?
After discussing the events happening in Washington State and the extensive travel @stacyking and I hope to be taking through the rest of 2020, we’ve decided we’re bowing out of #ECCC this year. My apologies.
— Jim Zub (@JimZub) March 3, 2020
COMICS FOLKS, with the oncoming threat of Coronavirus (and the news it spreads to dogs & we have 3 with cancer), I’ve decided I need to cancel my appearance at #ECCC – I’m trying to get a refund on my table, but in case ReedPOP won’t, does anyone want a last-minute table? hmu
— Matt Miner (@MattMinerXVX) March 1, 2020
With extreme sadness I must announce I have to cancel my @emeraldcitycon appearance. I am so sorry to the fans I may disappointed with this decision. It was an extremely hard choice to make. Thank you ECCC for their understanding and support. ♥️♥️ pic.twitter.com/FnQtDPWeYE
— Agnes Garbowska (@AgnesGarbowska) March 3, 2020
After finding out about everything going on in Seattle and ECCC…I spoke to my wife and we’ve thought it best I cancel my attendance.
— Ray-Anthony Height – MIDNIGHT TIGER NOW ON KS! (@RAHeight) March 2, 2020
Important #ECCC2020 notice: Due to the severity of the COVID-19 virus, Dark Horse Comics has made the difficult decision to pull out of Emerald City Comic Con 2020. It is with the safety and well-being of our staff and creators in mind that we have come to this decision. 1/2— Dark Horse Comics (@DarkHorseComics) March 3, 2020
Penguin Random House has come to the difficult decision to cancel its participation in ECCC due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus. While this show is an important way for our staff and authors to connect with readers, the health and safety of everyone take priority.— Del Rey Books (@DelReyBooks) March 3, 2020
(UPDATE) As I went to bed last night here in the UK, the US still had a good portion of the day left to run. And so, waking up this morning we now have the news that DC Comics have also cancelled, telling The Hollywood Reporter the following:
As the health and safety of our employees are always our primary concerns, DC staffers will not be attending conventions during the month of March. Future convention attendance will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, factoring in the latest information from a variety of organizations, including the CDC, WHO, U.S. State Department and local health agencies.
This follows on from their already-cancelled Superman Red Son premier in New York, but what else may fall across the con season, if this is just the start? With the likes of Frank Cho, Steve Lieber and Marguerite Bennett having cancelled, who will be left come the weekend?
More as news develops.