We knew it was coming, but this morning's email still stung. San Diego Comic-Con is cancelled for the first time.
David Glanzer summed it up with a nice quote: "Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures and while we are saddened to take this action, we know it is the right decision."
It's easy to be blithe about the decision, which many of us have expected for a month now, but it really will have financial and emotional repercussions across all SDCC communities - the attendees, the vendors, the studios, the surrounding hotels and restaurants, everyone. I'm sure there's a sense of premature termination for cosplayers planning their outfits, gamers looking forward to tournaments, collectors anticipating specific items, etc. It may sound silly, but there's going to be a grieving process involved while everyone lets go of what is a profound annual pilgrimage for many of us.
A few notes:
- You'll have the chance to transfer your badge to 2021 or request a refund. We don't know yet how the refunds will be made, but I would imagine it'll be the buyer who's refunded, not the attendee. So get in touch now with whoever bought your badge and let them know if you're requesting a refund. They'll need to transfer that money back to you.
- If you got a partial badge and are transferring, would you still be eligible to try to upgrade to a full badge in Open Reg 2021? I hope so.
- Any Early Bird deposits will be refunded.
- However, any other deposits on hotel rooms that you booked on your own aren't impacted by this - so you'll need to negotiate with the hotel directly.
- Remember that other Cons are still scheduled - as of now - for late summer and autumn. Will they still happen? Probably not. But it's something to keep in mind if you're desperate to get some kind of Con in this year.
Finally, don't turn your back on the Comic-Con world until next year. There are plenty of digital efforts to promote and sell work, foster online parties and keep everyone connected. No, it's not the same - but it's something.