Ticketmaster cancels public sale for Taylor Swift tour after record-breaking demand and website | TBEN news

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Ticketmaster canceled Friday’s public ticket sales for Taylor Swift’s upcoming tour, just days after millions of the pop star’s fans flooded the ticketing site in search of presale seats, causing intermittent outages and lengthy wait times.

Earlier Thursday, Ticketmaster tried to figure out what caused the chaotic disruptions when pre-sale tickets for Swift’s The Eras tour became available Tuesday, breaking records — and parts of the site itself.

“Due to extremely high demands on ticketing systems and insufficient remaining ticket stock to meet that demand, tomorrow’s public sale for Taylor Swift | The Eras Tour has been cancelled,” the ticketing site tweeted.

It’s the latest chapter in the drama about Ticketmaster’s sales and pricing practices that have enraged music fans and irate critics – including a US senator – citing high prices, concerns about the amount of power the platform has and the lack of competition in ticket sales. industry.

“The Eras on sale made one thing clear: Taylor Swift is an unstoppable force and continues to set records,” Ticketmaster wrote in an explanation on its website, noting that many fans were unable to get their hands on tickets.

LOOK | Fans react to Ticketmaster’s failed sale of Taylor Swift:

Taylor Swift Fans to Ticketmaster: Now We’ve Got Bad Blood

Some Taylor Swift fans are expressing outrage at Ticketmaster after a chaotic release of tickets for the upcoming Eras tour marred by long wait times, limited supply and technical issues.

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Largest Verified Fan registration ever

During the pre-sale, the platform required fans to pre-register for the Verified Fan system, which the platform says is designed to help manage in-demand shows, screen out bots and limit overcrowding to keep wait times shorter.

According to the site, more than 3.5 million fans have pre-registered for the program, which is the largest registration the platform has ever seen.

Ticketmaster says two million verified fans were put on a waiting list and 1.5 million were given a chance to get in line when sales began.

But the company said a “staggering number of bot attacks” and fans without Verified Fan invite codes caused “unprecedented traffic” and saw fans waiting in online queues for up to eight hours.

Ticketmaster says more than two million tickets were sold to fans as of November 15, the most tickets ever sold for an artist in a single day.

Fans angry about presale problems, ‘dynamic prices’

This isn’t the first time Ticketmaster has angered Swifties. In 2018, the price of tickets for her shows reached a high of $1,500 US, with many fans complaining that they weren’t even accepted into the program, which would allow them to purchase more modestly priced pre-sale tickets.

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Swift’s fans aren’t the only ones angry at the ticket company.

In July, people trying to buy tickets to see Bruce Springsteen waited for hours in online queues and said they were concerned about Ticketmaster’s dynamic pricing system, which changes the price of tickets based on demand.

With all the more modestly priced nominal tickets long gone, the cost of tickets to see The Boss rose to as much as $5,000 US.

This summer, Drake’s OVO fest at Toronto’s Molson Amphitheater sold out almost immediately. Soon after, seats on the lawn furthest from the outdoor venue’s Budweiser Stage were offered for $900.

LOOK | Springsteen fans outraged at the price to see The Boss:

Springsteen fans express outrage at Ticketmaster’s “dynamic pricing.”

Bruce Springsteen fans were shocked to see ticket prices for his upcoming tour as high as $5,500 US. At the heart of the controversy is Ticketmaster’s “dynamic pricing policy,” which automatically raises some ticket prices when demand is high.

The US Senator speaks out

Among the fans who spoke out about the platform’s shortcomings was Democratic U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, who wrote a letter to Live Nation Entertainment Inc, expressing “serious concerns about competition in the ticketing industry and the detrimental impact on the consumer”.

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“Ticketmaster’s power in the primary ticket market insulates it from the competitive pressures that typically force companies to innovate and improve their services,” said Klobuchar, who chairs a Senate subcommittee on antitrust issues.

“That could result in the kind of dramatic service outages we’ve seen this week, with consumers being the ones paying the price.”

In her letter, Klobuchar asked Live Nation Chief Executive Michael Rapino to answer a handful of questions, including how much the company had spent to upgrade the technology to meet rising demand, and what percentage of high-profile tour tickets had been reserved. for presale.

Ticketmaster did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Klobuchar’s letter.

Live Nation and Ticketmaster merged in a 2010 deal approved by the United States Department of Justice. The government can challenge a completed merger, but rarely does. In her letter, Klobuchar said she was skeptical about the deal at the time.

Ticketmaster has also come under fire from artists themselves.

In the mid-1990s, the band Pearl Jam said the company had violated antitrust laws, used its monopoly to charge exorbitant fees, and later pushed event organizers to deny performers access to other venues.

The group decided to tour without using Ticketmaster, but found the process too cumbersome and returned to the service after 14 months.

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