SXSW May Abandon Austin, Texas
Are major changes coming to SXSW?
A report commissioned by SXSW has proposed some major changes to the festival, including a potential ban on unofficial gigs. In the report by Populous, an international design and planning firm which also works with the Super Bowl and the World Cup, the firm recommended a cap on the total number of events and suggests that SXSW “will have no choice but to entertain notions of bidding their event to other cities to sustain their business model.”
The unofficial shows that surround the festival such as the daytime marathons, corporate-sponsored surprise shows, and late-night bridge shows are arguably just as if not more important than the official events that require a badge or wristband. Texas Monthly reports that in order to protect “stakeholder interests,” SXSW should create a “Clean Zone” or “Legal Injunctive Zone” which would prevent non-official events from obtaining the proper permits to hold events. Since SXSW makes a great deal of its money from corporate sponsors, it makes sense to protect those interests by cracking down on the events which do not directly result in monetary gain for the festival.
While these are merely suggestions and it’s unclear whether SXSW will be putting the guidelines from the report into effect, it’s possible that major changes are coming to the Austin, Texas event.
Check out a recap of Mass Appeal’s 2014 SXSW Show here.