Ticketmaster under scrutiny after Taylor Swift’s tour tickets fiasco
Taylor Swift fans were enraged after a series of complications while trying to purchase tickets to the singer’s new tour. The situation brought to light the decade’s-old monopolization of Ticketmaster and calls for investigation.
by Aline Barbosa
Fans encountered a series of issues while trying to obtain tickets and call for an end to the company’s monopolization in the market.
Ticketmaster is under fire after a huge fiasco regarding ticket sales for Taylor Swift’s new tour. The company’s market monopolization was once again brought to light as fans, activists and lawmakers called for a Ticketmaster and Live Nation break up.
Both companies merged in 2010, and have faced immense backlash since then due to its size and power within the entertainment industry. Those concerns were amplified this week after Taylor Swift’s “Eras Tour” concert tickets went on presale.
The demand was so significant that the company had to extend presales after thousands of fans flocked to their website. The situation caused disruptions and long queues that lasted over 8 hours.
Fans immediately took to social media to complain about the situation after having issues with the website. According to them, the website would crash and freeze during purchase, leaving them empty handed.
Many users got an error page from Ticketmaster stating that something went wrong and they’d need to start over. The page also said their team was onto the errors and were working so it wouldn’t happen again.
Lawmakers are calling for an investigation on Ticketmaster
After the ticket fiasco, many lawmakers across the country are calling on the DOJ to investigate Ticketmaster. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a representative from N.Y, tweeted Tuesday that the situation is a reminder of Ticketmaster’s monopoly. She then says the merge with Live Nation should not have happened and to break them up.
Senator Richard Blumenthal also weighed in on the situation, saying on a Tweet that the situation was the perfect example of how the merger harms consumers by creating a monopoly in the entertainment industry.
He then stated that he’s long asked the Department of Justice to investigate the ticketing industry, saying consumers deserve better treatment than the one they’re getting from Ticketmaster.
Many fans also complained about the long queues and the confusion surrounding presale codes and verified fan tickets. This verified system was implemented by Ticketmaster back in 2017 to avoid tickets falling into the hands of resellers and direct them to actual fans.
However, that didn’t seem to work very well. Within a few hours, tickets for Taylor Swift’s “Eras Tour” were already up for thousands of dollars at secondary markets.
Originally, the tour tickets prices range from $49 to $450 at Ticketmaster. VIP packages are more expensive, going from $199 to $899. On secondary markets, fans witnessed tickets going from $800 up to $20,000.
Taylor Swift’s new tour comes shortly after the release of her new record-breaking album “Midnights”. So far, the singer’s released 52 dates, and her new “Eras Tour” is well on the way to break the singer’s previous record for ticket sales in the U.S.
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