One of the largest influencer-driven conventions happened this past week in Anaheim, California. The convention, which is known as VidCon, saw thousands of fans and influencers converge upon the California city. The event, which describes itself as a gathering of “the world’s leading digital creators, platform innovators, and their fans”, has managed to find itself at the center of a COVID-19 scare, after many fans and influencers tested positive for COVID-19. Additionally, even the founders of the event Hank and John Green were noticeably absent as a result of one of them being infected with COVID-19.
In case you were unaware, the event was canceled in both 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic, this year marked its controversial comeback. As such, many feel that this year’s event should have been canceled too, as many are now sick following the event.
Fans and Influencer Sick:
Throughout the event, which took place from June 22nd through June 25th, 2022, many creators and fans took to social media to share that they contracted COVID-19 after participating in the event. On June 24th, one of the event’s founders, Hank Green took to Twitter to inform his fans that he will not be participating in the remainder of the event after he tested positive for COVID-19. Additionally, another founder and brother of Hank Green took to Twitter to share a similar message. “I tested negative this morning, but I feel slightly unwell, and our family has been on vacation with Hank”, John Green shared on Twitter whilst informing his fans of his upcoming absence from the event.
I have news for folks at VidCon. I've been rapid COVID testing every morning just to be safe. Woke up this morning and tested positive. Of course, that means I won't be at any additional events this weekend. Feeling fine so far. I'm so sorry, y'all.
— Hank Green (@hankgreen) June 24, 2022
I tested negative this morning, but I feel slightly unwell, and our family has been on vacation with Hank and his family all week, so out of an abundance of caution, I will not be at any further events this weekend. I am so, so sorry. https://t.co/2CO5F23qxB
— John Green (@johngreen) June 24, 2022
Following the Green brother’s announcement, many influencers and fans who were at the event began to share that they also have tested positive for COVID-19. For example, on June 25th, 2022, YouTuber TapL took to Twitter to announce that he has also tested positive. “My COVID results came in and it shows I’m in fact COVID positive”, he shared on Twitter.
My COVID results came in and it shows I'm in fact COVID positive. I'm taking all of the safety precautions to lower the risk of spreading it as much as I can and I'm on my way back home to quarantine and rest until I'm back on my feet pic.twitter.com/48M7KhquVp
— TapL (@TapLHarV) June 26, 2022
An Uptick in Covid-19 Cases:
On the event’s first day, Orange County saw 4716 new COVID-19 cases. As a result, some social media users have placed the blame on VidCon for furthering the spread of the virus, sparking super-spreader fears in the process.
COVID-19 Super Spreader Fears:
With many creators and fans taking to social media announcing that they’ve tested positive, some have taken the opportunity to label VidCon as a ‘super-spreader’ event.
Holy shit, apparently Vidcon 2022 was a super-spreader event. Lots of people who went there are coming down with COVID-19.
That’s like a good amount of YouTubers from every sector, not to mention half of the commentary community. I hope the effects for everyone aren’t severe.
— blare tv 🏳️⚧️ (@blaretelevision) June 26, 2022
So I’m looking at COVID graphs for Anaheim, California and on the 20th zero new cases were reported. Yesterday on the 24th over 4000 new cases were reported in Anaheim alone. The common denominator is #Vidcon. It appears to be confirmed that it was a super-spreader event. pic.twitter.com/O1U72XELJR
— aiden. (@PunishedProject) June 26, 2022
As of now, VidCon has yet to address the situation publically. As soon as they do, this article will be updated. This story is still developing.