Coronavirus Confirmed As a Pandemic: Now What?
Well here we are, in the midst of a Pandemic. This is uncharted territory for most of us and businesses are having to be agile and pivot almost daily. The impact of coronavirus on the world in general and businesses is real. Depending on where you live, your general concern or worry will change, but one thing is clear. We are all in this together. In today’s global economy, every facet of modern life is interconnected in ways the average person doesn’t contemplate.
Let’s take stock together and see where we are and how we can move forward with the latest news on COVID-19.
Here is a live map update of all global cases of COVID-19 by John Hopkins University. This is by far the most up to date and accurate numbers available with an easy-to-use interface. It’s important not to let a website like this create fear, but simply use it as a monitoring tool for your country or countries you may be planning to travel to.
If you are in any of industry with conferences or events, you have already been impacted by the cancellation or postponment of events. At this point, every industry from ecommerce, sports, music have all been affected. Here’s a look at some major events around the world affected by the new Coronavirus:
At this point it’s almost a waiting game. In a tongue-and-cheek take, the website, Is it canceled yet?, takes stock of what’s been cancelled. As they put it: “Indeed, in dark times, dark humor is a salve for strained souls. It may be sad that some of the events listed here have been cancelled, but know that it is often a difficult decision made with good intentions, and that cancelling public events during an outbreak can help save lives.”
Though we can jokingly wait around to see which of our favourite sport’s games or festivals will get cancelled (the NBA decided to suspend season after one player tests positive for coronavirus), in the tech world and many other industries, cancelling events carries a heavy price tag. In the tech world alone, we have surpassed an economic cost of $1 billion dollars. This gives us a real insight into how valuable in-person connections are. It is usually the only chance to create deep, meaningful connections and network with the tech community and its partners as well as a great way to generate leads and eventual revenue. To shut them down completely for a year, leaves business and Merchants at a loss for those connections and scrambling to find new and innovative ways to reach out and make those important connections. Perhaps Coronavirus will mark a tipping point for virtual events!
Learn more about the impact to date within the eCommerce tech space here.
It may seem like only those who travel or come into contact with those who travel have a chance of being infected with COVID-19. Unfortunately, that is becoming less true, those who did attend a conference recently in Toronto, exposed 25,000 other attendees resulting in what experts are calling ‘community transmission’. This type of transmission will become more common in places like parks, churches, malls etc. Headlines like the one above are really why other conferences have taken the safest measures they could and risked losing money before putting their sponsors and attendees at risk.
So, what’s the good news? Is there anything that can give us some hope in these uncertain times? There is…and its called ‘flattening the curve’
“If you look at the curves of outbreaks, they go big peaks, and then come down. What we need to do is flatten that down,” Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told reporters Tuesday. “That would have less people infected. That would ultimately have less deaths. You do that by trying to interfere with the natural flow of the outbreak.”
Everyone must take personal responsibility now and work for the collective good. If that means money lost and conferences cancelled then that is what must happen. Our lives and the lives of the vulnerable are the most important. We must all adjust and adapt.