More and More Conferences Are Going Virtual In Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic: Here’s a List of Events for the Rest of March (Thanks to Andy Fidel!)

Well, trickle that started with the highly successful Educators in VR 2020 International Summit has turned into a veritable flood, as dozens of conferences and events are moving away from real-world meetings to virtual ones, held on a variety of social VR platforms and virtual worlds.

Digital literacy educator Andy Fidel has compiled a document titled Running List of Conferences Going Virtual Due to Coronavirus Health Concerns — 2020, which he is updating as he hears of new events.

Here’s what’s coming up between now and the end of March (along with a couple of additions of my own). Thank you to Andy Fidel for all her work compiling this information!


March 16–19 | MVP Global Summit

“Microsoft has made the decision that this year’s MVP/Regional Director Summit will be an online-only/virtual event. Our entire team is working hard to plan and prepare an alternate experience that still provides the exclusive in-depth technical sessions in an online-only format and be inclusive to our globally distributed community.” [register here]


March 17–19 | Virtual Universe 2020

“Competing in today’s diverse market is no joke. Successful organizations must remain at the forefront of technology while controlling budgets, leveraging data, and ensuring security.” [register here]


March 18–19 | Women in Graphene 2020 Virtual Event

“The next Women in Graphene Career Development Day is going digital…join us on 18–19 March for an out of this world experience! This two-day event is an opportunity to discuss issues related to gender and diversity in science and technology fields and specifically in the graphene community.” [register here]


March 18 | Playable.GDC2020

“The Game Developer’s Conference has announced they will postpone their event. But all game developers know that with grit and innovation, THE SHOW MUST GO ON! PLAYABLE in the virtual reality streams from the event that you can attend from anywhere on the planet!” [register here]


March 18 | Domopalooza

“While we are disappointed not to be hosting Domopalooza in Utah, we are excited to bring the great content and conversations to you as an interactive online experience.” [register here]


March 19 | Spring Live

“Things are a little crazy right now. Were you excited about an upcoming conference that’s now cancelled? Same here. So we’re doing something about it. Complete the form and we’ll send you details on how to join this one-time event.” [register here]


March 19 | V²EC 2020 — Virtual VIVE Ecosytem Conference

“HTC usually hosts its Vive Ecosystem Conference (HTC 2020 VEC) in Shenzhen, China but due to the current climate will entirely host the event in virtual reality (VR).” [register here]


March 19–21 | Microsoft Build

“Join your peers and Microsoft engineers to learn, connect, and code together. Get inspired and leave a better developer than when you arrived.” [register here]


March 21–22 | Virtual Genius Conference

“Get ready for some very nuanced discussions/dialectics, lots of cutting-edge solutions to problems that the world hasn’t even acknowledged exists, to find like minds and new hobbies, and for a sneaky look at future trends (we tend to know them first!).” [register here]


March 24 | EMOTIONAI

“Join us for a virtual conference featuring leaders in tech and EQ to explore how AI and EQ can collaborate to build emotional connections for our future.” [register here]


March 22–26 | 2020 IEEE VR

“Out of an abundance of caution surrounding COVID-19, the decision has been made to convert the in-person component of VR 2020 into an all-digital conference experience — VR 2020 will now be an online event. The IEEE Conference on Virtual Reality and 3D User Interfaces (IEEE VR) is the premier international event for the presentation of research results in the broad area of virtual reality (VR).” [register here]


March 25 | MoCDA Spring 2020 Virtual Conference

“How do you share information with your students, clients, and other stakeholders, such as department chairs and local employers? A picture is worth a thousand words. Discover how career practitioners can enhance their website content and workshop materials with original images, including infographics, without having graphic design experience.” [register here]


March 24–25 | TRANSFORM

“#TRANSFORM2020 Online will deliver the complete conference as programmed via live streaming on 24 & 25 March with all content uploaded for viewing post-event. We will film all the sessions as programmed and will video conference in remote speakers where feasible. Delegates will be able to join the conversation and participate in sessions by submitting their questions and comments live — stay tuned.” [register]


March 23 | The Ultimate Tech Skills Conference

“Pluralsight LIVE Europe is now a virtual event open to everyone. Tune in for exciting product announcements, a message from Pluralsight CEO Aaron Skonnard and sessions on tech trends, skill development, best practices and more. Register below to get information on how to access it and a reminder when it goes live on 23 March.” [register here]


March 25 | Microsoft Developer Virtual Conference

“Calling all developers! Get ready to dev-level-up. Spend one day exploring a digital virtual conference and learning from experts across the nation. This digital event enables all types of developers to connect and learn through 5 different tracks and 20 sessions, as well as an online Partner lounge to build connections and discover a range of developer tools and services. Join sessions created for developers and discover the capabilities of the Microsoft Cloud ecosystem.” [register here]

March 25–26 | OECD Global Anti-Corruption & Integrity Forum

“Forum will go ahead in a virtual format, allowing participants to join the sessions from anywhere in the world, contribute to the debates and engage with speakers in real time.” [register here]


March 25–26 |Virtual World Best Practices in Education

The long-running Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education (VWBPE) conference will take place in the virtual world of Second Life from March 26th to 28th, 2020. The keynote on Saturday March 28th will by Lorelle VanFossen and Daniel Dyboski-Bryant, who will share their experience creating and running the first-ever Educators in VR 2020 International Summit, which was a resounding success with 160 speakers over six days on five different social VR platforms, and a model for future virtual conferences. The title of Lorelle and Daniel’s keynote is Lessons Learned from the 2020 Educators in VR Conference. [register here]


March 29-April 1 | Association of Test Publishers

“Innovations in Testing 2020 has made the unprecedented decision to cancel their on-site meeting in San Diego and turn Innovations 2020 into a Virtual On-line Conference. These are extraordinary times and in some ways it is a remarkable opportunity to put into play the technology and e-learning that we have talked so much about.” [register here]


March 31-April 2 | Adobe Summit — The Digital Experience Conference

Watch the keynote live: Hear about trends and new products that are transforming industries from the comfort of your wherever. Explore 100+ breakouts on demand: Get free access to over a hundred on-demand breakout sessions from Adobe, customers, and partners. Sneak a peak at the future: Join special guest Chelsea Handler for a look at the latest experimental tech from our labs — at Adobe Sneaks. [register here]


There are many more conferences and events taking place past the end of March, 2020; for further details please refer to Andy Fidel’s blogpost on Medium. (Thanks, Andy!)

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How to Find Events in Sinespace

Between dealing with the backlash I got from reporting on the Sansar layoffs, preparing and delivering my presentation for the Educators in VR conference, and that pesky coronavirus, I have not been writing as many sponsored blogposts about Sinespace as I wanted to this month. Please accept my apologies! I promise that I will be back at work on it in March!

This is my final weekend off before I head back to my paying job, so I decided to spend some quality time in Sinespace.

To find out what is going on in Sinespace, just open up your client software, click on the Community button in the blue row of buttons along the bottom, then click on the Events tab in the window that pops up:

Please note that all events are automatically listed in your local time, so there’s no need to convert between time zones!

(There’s also a handy page on the Sinespace website listing all upcoming events, which unfortunately does not do time conversions for you.)

Today there are three music events back-to-back:

1. Music with DJ Rosa (at the Catacombs)

Saturday February 29, 2020 21:00 UTC (3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. CST)
Join DJ Rosa in Guitarahalla live for Latin and classic rock. Have fun dancing and maybe win some gold! To visit this event click on “Explore” and search for Catacombs.

The dark and cozy Catacombs with DJ Rosa
The Catacombs (picture taken by DJ Rosa)

2. Music at 381 Club

Saturday February 29, 2020 23:00 UTC (5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. CST)
Join DJ Yer Playing awesome 80’s, 90’s and the best of the rest. Silver giveaways every 30 minutes during the event! To visit this event click on “Explore” and search for 381 Club.

3. Jay and (Nearly) Silent Les DJ Show

Sunday March 01, 2020 01:00 UTC (7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. CST)
Jay & (Nearly Silent) Les Show at Ziggies’ Nightclub. Dance to a variety of music, from 60’s retro to modern vibes. To visit this event click on “Explore” and search for Ziggies.

So, if you’re looking for a little virtual company, perhaps you want to check out Sinespace for yourself, why not come join us? If you need a little help getting started, here are some step-by-step instructions.


This blogpost is sponsored by Sinespace, and was written in my new role as an embedded reporter for this virtual world (more details here).

A List of Christmas Events in the Various Social VR/Virtual Worlds

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

This is a list of the various Christmas events which are taking place this holiday season on the various social VR platforms and virtual worlds I cover on this blog. If you have an event that I have missed, please let me know and I will update this listing, thanks!

Sinespace

Sinespace has a Winter Festival with events running every day from Dec. 21st, straight through until New Year’s Eve! Here’s the complete schedule. (And don’t forget to take advantage of one month of free Premium membership!)

Second Life

As usual, there is so much happening in Second Life around Christmastime that it is impossible to compile a full list!

  • Your best bet is to check the Events listing under Search; you can do a keyword search, or select events using the drop-down category menu in the upper right-hand corner of the Events window in Firestorm (for example, “Live Music” to catch a live performer’s show).
  • The official Second Life Destination Guide lists eight pages worth of winter attractions to visit.
  • The Seraphim website has a list of fairs and events that you might want to check out.
  • Among many other club events happening throughout Second Life over the holidays, Bryce Sun is DJing on Christmas Day at the FMD Club, which bills itself “the premiere destination for Second Life’s sexiest and most fashionable residents”.

Sansar

On Dec. 21st, Solas and Drax will host a special holiday edition of Harvest Hopping (the long-running Sansar worlds exploration event formerly known as Atlas Hopping). All are welcome!

And on Dec. 27th, there will be a Christmas Community Campfire at Witchy’s Winter, hosted by Beverly Zauberflote:

Please check the Sansar Events page for more details on these and other events during this holiday season.

AltspaceVR

Check the AltspaceVR Events Listing for all the news on what’s going on, including four separate VR Church Christmas services on Dec. 22nd: one at a time zone for Australians, a second at a time zone for Europeans, and two back-to-back services for North Americans.

VRChat

The best place to find out what Christmas events are happening in the busy world of VRChat is the VRChat Events website, with an online calendar of events, and a link to join the VRChat Events Discord server.

Also, there is a brand new Winter category in the Worlds menu in VRChat, with places for you to explore!

VRChat is also home to the annual New Years Times Square, where you could run into just about anybody! It is described as a developer-made world with hundreds of posters from the VRChat community.

My source, Fionna, also tells me:

I will be hosting an event for the world builder community on New Year’s Eve as well, featuring a world made by Sentinel, which is a gorgeous Art Deco lounge.

NeosVR

Medra, an organizer of the NeosVR Creator Jam series of events in NeosVR, posted:

The holidays are almost upon us and the 30th Creator Jam…so it’s time for:

Creator Jam 30: 3rd Megajam & Winter Holiday Party

Sunday December 22nd
Starts at 2 p.m. EST(11 a.m. PST/19:00 UTC).

As an anniversary and Holiday celebration come hang out exchanging gifts, dressing up, and voting on Christmas trees. This will be a party and Swap Meet. NeosVR is wonderful for people unloading their inventories. What a better way to be in the spirit of giving than for people to share what they have or made. If you have a cool avatar, share it! If you have a cool gadget, please share. Pack neat Logix snippets in adult beverages or prezzies. We will be be exploring all the previous nine Creator Jam worlds in a livestream with Nexulan.

Secret Santa gift exchange will be held during this party at 2:30 p.m. EST (11:30 a.m. PST/19:30 UTC) Even if you aren’t a part of the Secret Santa gift exchange feel free to give gifts to specific people or everyone.

Everyone is welcome. I look forward to seeing all!

Somnium Space

Somnium Space is simultaneously saying goodbye both to 2019 and to the first version of their Steam client, with a Farewell Party on Dec. 30th with special guests Vivian Chazen (the host of The Hive VR) and musical artist Luke Reynolds:

AltspaceVR: A New Update Makes It Even Easier to Create and Host Live Events on the Social VR Platform

Kyle Melnick of the VRScout virtual reality news website reported today that Microsoft-owned social VR platform AltspaceVR has rolled out a new update:

In an official release sent out yesterday, Microsoft revealed a slew of new features and improvements heading to the social platform that will allow users to more easily create, share, and host their own live events, whether it be a small get-together with a handful of friends or an arena-scale festival open to users around the globe. This latest update introduces a new user interface offering a variety of pre-built event templates for ad-hoc AMAs [Ask Me Anything events], political discussions, community meetups, and nine other additional formats. 

(image from VRScout article)

As part of its new focus on user-made events, AltspaceVR will be hosting a Daily Spotlight Event every evening at 7:00 p.m. Pacific Time/10:00 p.m. Eastern Time, showcasing a rotating lineup of community events for users to discover. 

As I have said before, AltspaceVR is just absolutely killing it with respect to its programming. It’s probably the one social VR platform that hosts the most live events and meetings, and obviously the company has decided to focus on its strengths in that area. (It certainly doesn’t hurt that AltspaceVR clients are available for the HTC Vive, GearVR, Oculus VR hardware, Windows Mixed Reality headsets, and flatscreen desktop mode on a PC. More options mean more people can participate.)

For more information about AltspaceVR, here is their website and their events calendar. You can also follow them on various social media: Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Discord.