As we move forward into 2023, we at the CNCF remain committed to detailed explanations for the more impactful policy decisions we make, especially with regard to our events. In particular, many of you had questions about our mask policy, along with other health & safety protocols/requirements for future in-person events. To secure the data we needed to make a decision, we engaged the CNCF event community to get comprehensive feedback. The answers were provided by CNCF event attendees, along with government and municipality representatives and their suggested guidelines from our future 2023 event locations, along with ongoing medical guidance on health from those same agencies in those locations.
After consulting with all these sources, including the detailed survey with hundreds of former CNCF attendees, we have decided to make masks recommended, but not required, at all events in 2023 (subject to local regulation changes and changes in the overall Covid-19 pandemic).
The impetus for revisiting our health & safety protocols at this time (and surveying all past CNCF event in-person attendees from events between 2016 and 2022) was that our event venues and vendors for 2023 events had informed us that they are no longer legally able to enforce mask, testing, or vaccine requirements for their employees unless there is a change in their local government and health agency regulations. Thus, employees from vendors working onsite at events (venue staff, catering, security, A/V, trade show contractor, etc) will not be required to wear masks or to show proof of vaccination or a negative test.
This change in what we are able to mandate for our vendors, combined with the evolving state of the pandemic, is what led us to survey past attendees to determine what our event participant protocols should be in 2023.
In addition, based on survey results gathered from previous CNCF attendees, we’ve determined that:
- Proof of vaccine OR a negative Covid-19 test will still be required for entry to CNCF events
- Daily onsite testing will continue to be made available to event attendees
- Daily ID checks/badge stickers will continue to be utilized to ensure everyone in the event has abided by entry requirements for vaccines and testing
- Food & beverage will now be allowed in all rooms at venues including keynote and conference session rooms
- We will continue sanitizing all speaker microphones between sessions
There were multiple factors to consider, but here were our primary guideposts for this conclusion.
First and foremost, it was clear that a significant majority of the attendees we surveyed (over 560 responses) either do not believe masks should be required (58.47% disagreed/strongly disagreed) or were neutral on the subject (13.8%). In fact, almost a third of respondents (28%) indicated they would not attend at all if masks were required. 53.79% of respondents felt we should continue to require proof of vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test to attend CNCF events in person in 2023. 57.04% of respondents wanted an on-site testing option to continue to be available. A slim majority of 41.27% (with 20.28% neutral on the topic) agreed that daily ID checks should continue to be conducted onsite next year. 62.85% of respondents (with another 19.72% neutral on the topic) wanted food & beverage to be allowed back into all conference session rooms. Finally, 68.31% of respondents felt that we should still be sanitizing microphones between each speaker’s use.
In summary, 2023 CNCF events, based on survey results of past in-person CNCF event attendees; municipality & health agency guidelines; and guidelines from our venues and vendors for 2023 event locations, we will:
- Recommend but not require event participants to wear masks at in-person events
- Require proof of vaccine or a negative Covid-19 test for in-person entry to CNCF events
- Conduct daily ID checks and issue badge stickers confirming entry requirements for vaccines and testing have been met
- Allow food & beverage to be consumed in all spaces at in-person events including the exhibit hall, keynote room and conference rooms
- Sanitize all speaker microphones between sessions
- Make onsite testing options available to in-person event attendees
All current protocols are subject to change should there be a change if local municipality and health agency guidelines indicate or require that they should. We will do everything we can to provide any updates as early as possible.Thanks to everyone that provided their feedback in helping us come to this important decision. If you have additional feedback, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re looking forward to seeing all of you at our expanded slate for events coming in 2023.