In 2020, the BSHS hosted two major online events, the first of their kind in our collective experience. The first, a Twitter conference, was planned and accomplished before COVID-19 had quite been established as a serious global issue. The conference was planned, rather, as an innovation in travel-free conferencing, something that has been on the BSHS agenda since the IPCC report of 2018, calling for net-zero-carbon activity in all areas by 2050. As we discussed the Twitter conference, and watched the amazing energy, intellect and resourcefulness of its planners and hosts, we quickly saw that online delivery offered other advantages too – chiefly, wider participation. The pandemic offered the society a chance to take these lessons very boldly into the most important event of our scholarly calendar, which usually takes the form of an in-person annual conference, but this time was executed as an online festival.