Ticketmaster is spelling out what went wrong with their Taylor Swift tour sales — and the justification for the fiasco was basically chalked up to … a necessary evil to defeat bots.
The Live Nation company posted an explainer Friday night, giving an in-depth breakdown of why so many people had such a hard time buying tickets to TS’s ‘Eras Tour’ during the presale window this week … and it consisted of both an apology and a defense of the chaos.
We want to apologize to Taylor and all of her fans – especially those who had a terrible experience trying to purchase tickets. We feel we owe it to everyone to share some information to help explain what happened: https://t.co/1Gn4kRIvq8
— Ticketmaster (@Ticketmaster) November 19, 2022
For starters, Ticketmaster acknowledges what TayTay said … that she was told they were anticipating an unprecedented amount of traffic and were prepared. However, TM adds that despite this … when the digital doors actually opened, their expectations were exceeded.
Ticketmaster posted a graph that shows just how many people (and not-real-people) flooded their site … even though they had a rigorous registration system in place to make sure real, authenticated fans were able to buy tickets, as opposed to spammers who would otherwise snap them up in bulk and hawk them on the resale market with massive markups.
Regardless of this seemingly airtight system being in place — consisting of 3.5 million users successfully preregistering/confirming their IDs — Ticketmaster says that on the day of the sale, even more unregistered fans and bots came flocking in … partially crashing the site.
To resolve this record amount of traffic while simultaneously taking care of the folks who should’ve been guaranteed a chance to buy passes … Ticketmaster says it started staggering queues, the result of which ended with longer wait times and, inevitably, frustrated users.
Ticketmaster says they know this caused confusion — and in some cases, people to lose their spots outright — but insists it was the best option under the circumstances. TM also proudly touts the fact 2.4 million tickets were, in fact, ultimately sold to authenticated fans … and that less than 5% of the tickets sold ended up for resale, a W in the site’s book.
Ticketmaster says it regrets the fact some were left empty-handed, but also adds this perspective … it’s unfeasible to please everyone, especially at this level of interest.
TM says, “[B]ased on the volume of traffic to our site, Taylor would need to perform over 900 stadium shows (almost 20x the number of shows she is doing) … that’s a stadium show every single night for the next 2.5 years. While it’s impossible for everyone to get tickets to these shows, we know we can do more to improve … and that’s what we’re focused on.”
Time will tell if this is good enough for the Justice Dept., which is now investigating.