Verzuz was created back in April of last year as a way to unite people from all over while sheltered in-place at home.
The platform’s battles first began with appointed artists streaming from the comfort of their homes. Then its partnership with Apple Music gave it an in-person upgrade to make the battles more accessible for viewers.
Following delays and postponed events, the platform is now taking new COVID-19 precautions to switch back to its original format.
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The live streaming platform posted a message on their socials this morning stating that it will be returning to its original format of having artists stream from separate locations.
“This has been an emotional week,” the platform stated. “In addition, as COVID-19 numbers continue to increase, safety is a top priority for us. As much as we enjoy having everyone together in the same room, to protect the artists and everyone who works with us in putting the shows together, we’ll be going back to separate locations for a bit. We’re excited for the next few events, and look forward to getting back to the show in the coming weeks.”
This announcement follows the news of the Keyshia Cole and Ashanti battle being postponed after the latter artist contracted COVID-19 hours before their originally scheduled battle.
Unfortunately, we have to postpone tonight’s #VERZUZ. Ashanti tested positive for COVID-19, and we cannot put anyone at risk in the process. First time this has struck us so close to show time. We apologize to our incredible audience! https://t.co/Z5joJjVmFI pic.twitter.com/zH4tkoKnhk
— VERZUZ (@verzuzonline) December 12, 2020
The platform has shared that their battle has again been postponed to a yet-to-be-announced date.
Users online have previously expressed their frustrations with the streaming platform’s new in-person gatherings, requesting they go back to what it once was.
The entire point of #Verzuz when it started was everyone being able to engage FROM HOME. Why now they have to be in the same room??
— mugatu (@tinnkky) December 12, 2020
The fun has been stripped from #Verzuz. It was much better when artists were connecting to their neighbors WiFi and playing their songs from the guest bedroom.
— ᴅᴏʟʟᴀʀ (@callmedollar) October 19, 2020
*whispers* the format should have never changed from having participants in separate locations. Not only was it part of the overall experience of the original idea, but also the panoramic hasn’t ended since it’s begun 🤷🏽♀️ https://t.co/3znfWU2B5Q
— God-is Rivera (@GodisRivera) January 8, 2021
The platform is expected to continue rolling out battles, now in its new format, with Keyshia Cole and Ashanti still on the schedule as well as a confirmed classic Southern rap battle with UGK vs. 8Ball & MJG, according to Bun B.