Ticketing failures lead to chaos, #WeMakeEvents is still at it, Wimbledon 2021 is a go and a bit of good news for indoor events.

NRL snafu 🏉

While Queensland is one place that hasn’t been as ravaged by COVID as the rest of the world, the number of people stranded outside of Suncorp Stadium prior to the National Rugby League preliminary due to a ticketing failure had authorities, and the general public alike, feeling more than a little concerned. The malfunction itself, while inconvenient, served as an impetus for the frustrations surrounding the disregard for hygiene precautions and distancing protocols.

The 52,500 seat venue was filled to just over 70% capacity and approximately 20,000 people were affected by the glitch. They were left milling about the stadium entrance, maskless and with zero enforcement of social distancing, until staff simply opened the gates and let everyone flood in. Fans were left exposed, vulnerable and without guidance in a time where a significant emphasis has been placed on avoiding just this sort of incident.

Oops, they did it again 🙇‍♀️

The #WeMakeEvents campaign is once again front and center in Parliament Square. The newest installment of the campaign for support from the UK government for event professionals is underway through tomorrow. The “Survival in the Square” initiative has been a daily representation of the various sectors of the entertainment community and the individuals affected by the industry shutdown and uncertain return.

The week’s showcases will culminate in a final display tomorrow at 5pm in what is being called “The Bow '' where crew and supporters will take a collective bow in gratitude. The credit for organizing such a successful and COVID compliant display of industry support is well deserved. Visit the #WeMakeEvents website to see the full list of activations and videos from each day's demonstration.

Preparation is key 🗝️

After being cancelled this year, the AELTC announced that Wimbledon will go forward in 2021 regardless of the COVID situation. The organizers in charge of the annual competition have made preparations for 3 different scenarios: full capacity, partial capacity and without spectators. Planning an event is difficult enough, having to plan for essentially 3 different events sounds like a nightmare, but one event organizers may begin to embrace if things continue much longer.

Until there is more clearly defined guidance regarding the return of live events, the Wimbledon organizers felt it was more prudent to make multiple plans to accommodate every possible outcome for next year. It’s that or cancel for the second year in a row which is not an appealing prospect for anybody.

Some good news for the weekend 🤘

Yesterday, Halle University in Germany presented the results of the experiment conducted back in August and boy is it good news! As a refresher (for those of you that missed our August 28 update), scientists at the medical center held 3 concerts with varying degrees of hygiene requirements for 1,500 healthy 18-50 year olds to evaluate crowd behavior and determine the likelihood of the spread of COVID between people attending live events.

So, what happened? 3 main findings were highlighted:

  1. “Critical contacts” i.e. those lasting more than a few minutes, were not that high & could be reduced further with hygiene concepts.
  2. Ingress & break times produced the majority of said “critical contacts”.
  3. Ventilation is key.

Dr. Stefan Moritz, the director of the study, confirmed the main point, “...events can take place even in a pandemic situation under certain conditions...”. With proper hygiene concepts, a plan to minimize contact during entry and down times and good ventilation, indoor events should be allowed to resume.

Mic Drop. 🎤