Main Image via Catherine Powell for MTV/Paramount Global
It’s been four years since Taylor Swift’s last tour (Reputation Stadium Tour), and since then she has released four new albums as well as two re-recordings of past albums.
It should then come as zero shock that when she announced the “Eras” Tour, her long-awaited return to touring had fans buzzing with the chance to see her live once more. Image via Taylor Swift
Well, excitement dissipated swiftly for the MILLIONS (yes, MILLIONS) of fans (Swifties) in the United States who descended upon the live-event site Ticketmaster to secure their seats.
Some buyers waitied in reportedly frozen queues for over 8 hours only to be met with broken checkouts on the site.
Hours into the mayhem, Ticketmaster stated that demand for the shows was “historically unprecedented” and that people in queues should “hang tight.” It also rescheduled some presale events to Wednesday.
Yes, dear reader, you read that correctly. This crash of the Ticketmaster site was not from a general sale, but a pre-sale.
In fact, there will be no general sale at all, as Ticketmaster has announced that due to insufficient remaining tickets it has been cancelled.
While some fans and onlookers criticised Ticketmaster for seemingly failing to prepare for the high volume of web traffic - Ticketmaster CEO, Greg Maffei, justified that they absolutely could not have prepared for the influx of people who were attempting to secure tickets, stating that “the site was supposed to be opened up for 1.5 million verified Taylor Swift fans. We had 14 million hit the site."
However, many others, including American lawmakers and senators, have demanded a deeper look at the company’s merger with event company Live Nation and the domination this gives them over the ticketing industry. They will undergo investigation by the Department Of Justice.
This is not the first time fans have had bad blood with Ticketmaster. They’ve been called out numerous times for charging high service fees and enabling predatory resellers. The majority of tickets for the tour were priced between $49 (RM229) to $899 (RM4,099), but due to the monopoly the company has, it allows for them to implement concepts such as their ‘dynamic pricing’ (which sees ticket prices raise due to interest and demand for the show).
The lucky ones who managed to get tickets paid upwards of $1200 (that’s RM5,436 if you’re keeping count), when it was all said and done.
Not to mention, that while presale tickets were initially only open to Swifites selected as “verified fans” – a system set up to deter bots and scalpers – some tickets were already being listed on resale sites for as much as $22,700 (RM10,2831) each.
Ticketmaster has since issued an apology to Taylor and to the fans, after Taylor herself released a statement regarding the fiasco, calling out Ticketmaster who assured her that they could handle the demand.
Image via Taylor Swift
Concert goers have long complained about the price of tickets, the process to obtain tickets and the common issue of resellers yet despite being the most commonly used ticket sales and distribution company based in the United States with operations in many countries around the world, including Malaysia, the company has not done much to make the ticket buying process easier or fair.
Meanwhile Swifties outside the United States still have no news if they’ll be getting concert dates soon.
Taylor hasn’t been to Malaysia since 2013 (for the Red Tour), and while we’re excited at the prospect she might, we are, however, completely dreading the great ticketing war we’ll be in.
How much would you be willing to pay to see Taylor Swift live in concert? Let us know in the comments below!
Info via: The Guardian, Washington Post, Twitter.
By Vennisha N.