SXSW to Launch an Online Event for 2021

For 2021, South by Southwest is launching SXSW Online.

“The challenge of building a new future is one that we’re excited to tackle,” Roland Swenson, CEO, and Co-Founder of SXSW said in a statement. “This has been such a year of change and we, like the entire world, are reshaping our perspective on how we connect.”

The dates for SXSW Online take place from March 16 through March 20th. And SXSW EDU will precede it from March 9 through March 11. The digital event will feature conference keynotes and sessions, screenings, showcases, networking, and exhibitions.

SXSW is accepting PanelPicker entries for its SXSW, SXSW EDU, and the film festival beginning Tuesday, Oct. 6th.

SXSW also plans to curate programming for its music festival by its staff with a priority on those selected for the 2020 event.

In addition to the online event, SXSW is working

with the City of Austin and public health authorities for an in-person event. It will provide more details in the future. Large in-person gatherings are still prohibited in Texas due to the threat of spreading Coronavirus.

For 2020, Austin City officials canceled SXSW a week before the event was set to take place. At the time, there were no COVID-19 cases in Austin yet and only a handful of cases in Texas overall. But the virus had already taken hold in Asia and Europe and was beginning to spread in the U.S.

The cancellation of SXSW was a huge blow to the Austin economy. In 2019, SXSW attracted 417,400 people to Austin including participation from more than 100 countries. It also had an impact on the Austin economy of $355.9 million, according to SXSW.