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The Age of Socially Distant Events




Virtual events have been booming over the past few months. While some companies, like Comic-Con, did not see a benefit in putting their product online, other companies saw the opportunity to adapt and move forward with the digital output of content. Since putting a music festival online is a newer concept, some of them were met with disapproval. Most people hope that we resume in-person, large group gatherings next summer, however moving, at least partially, to a digital platform allows those who are far away or not yet comfortable with attending these gatherings to still feel connected to other like-minded individuals.

1. Music Festivals

While we were all saddened by the cancelation of popular music festivals like Coachella, some, like Lollapalooza and CMA Best of Fest, took to a virtual stage. In order to operate online, Lollapalooza partnered with YouTube - along with TacoBell and Venmo - to Livestream their event. Having popular artists like A$AP Rocky, The Weeknd, and Paul McCartney helped promote the festival, as the lineup was so diverse that there was music for everyone. CMA Best of Fest aired on ABC. However, both events are hoping to continue as normal in 2021, CMA Best of Fest has already begun selling tickets to next June’s in-person event in Nashville. The iHeartRadio Festival will stream on the CW this weekend (September 18 and 19) and feature well-known artists such as Alicia Keys, Miley Cyrus, and Bon Jovi.

2. Conventions

As for famous conventions, like VidCon and Comic-Con, unfortunately, Comic-Con San Diego was canceled for the first time this year in its 50 year history. On the bright side, however, while VidCon canceled their convention this year, the company has partnered with YouTube to put out a free series of online programming all summer - specifically targeting community, industry, and creator events.

3. New York Fashion Week

One of New York City’s biggest yearly events is Fashion Week, which has also followed the trend of being online. The CFDA’s (Council of Fashion Designers of America) response to a virtual event is called “Runway360.” Runway360 is about making sure the product is seen by consumers, retail, and the media. New York’s version of Fashion Week has diverged from other famous Fashion Weeks, as it shows their strength in still making a statement. NYFW focused on the art they created, while Fashion Weeks in other major cities, like London and Paris, had interviewed about designers’ homes.

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