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the coronavirus crisis

Gaming expo E3 canceled over coronavirus concerns

E3 2020 is officially off.

The annual Electronic Entertainment Expo that was set for June is the latest event to be canceled because of concerns about the new COVID-19 coronavirus.

"After careful consultation with our member companies regarding the health and safety of everyone in our industry — our fans, our employees, our exhibitors and our longtime E3 partners — we have made the difficult decision to cancel E3 2020," the Entertainment Software Association said on Wednesday, per Variety. "Following increased and overwhelming concerns about the COVID-19 virus, we felt this was the best way to proceed during such an unprecedented global situation."

E3 is generally considered to be the most important video game event of the year, during which upcoming titles are previewed. The Entertainment Software Association said Wednesday it hopes to "coordinate an online experience to showcase industry announcements" in June.

The cancellation of E3, which was scheduled to begin on June 9 in Los Angeles, comes after South by Southwest was called off for 2020 and Coachella was moved to October. The number of cases of the novel coronavirus in the United States has passed 1,000, and on Wednesday, the World Health Organization described it as a pandemic.