The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
Ticketmaster and Taylor Swift’s Eras tour controversy
Taylor Swift tickets were always going to be in high demand but no one anticipated the fallout from buying tickets for her upcoming Eras Tour.
Taylor has not toured since the 2018 Reputation tour and since then has released 4 new albums: Lover, Folklore, Evermore and her latest release Midnights. Additionally, she has also released two rerecords: Fearless (Taylor’s Version) and Red (Taylor’s Version). With the sheer amount of fans Taylor has garnered over the years, the demand for her upcoming tour was high. It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone, especially Ticketmaster— the ticket sales company in charge of the tour’s presale.
To be able to deal with this demand for the upcoming Eras tour, Taylor Swift made use of Ticketmaster’s ‘Verified Fan’ scheme to prevent bots at the presale, allowing fans to get these tickets. Unique codes were emailed out to fans to allow them to access the presale event with Ticketmaster, stating that not every fan would be able to get a ticket but the scheme would make the process smoother. Records were broken with 3.5 million people registering for presale. However, only 1.5 million codes were sent out (as there was not the capacity for all 3.5 million) and the rest were on a verified fan waitlist in the event that there were tickets remaining.
However, there was a turn of events when the tickets went live on Tuesday 17th. According to downdetector.com, Ticketmaster had crashed 5000 times. Ticketmaster hadn’t anticipated the massive influx of traffic once the pre-sale went live as historically, only 40% of verified fans show up to buy tickets. A total of 3.5 BILLION requests were made during the presale, consisting of a large number of bots, fans that did not have presale codes, and fans with codes, resulting in four times that of the previous Ticketmaster peak. Despite the influx of traffic to the site, there were still Eras Tour tickets sold, with all 2 million tickets available for presale going to verified fans.
Some fans were not happy with the cost of these tickets, as dynamic pricing may have been turned on for these tour dates. Dynamic pricing means that the ticket prices increase with demand and fans reported prices of $800+ for some seats in the stadium, due to sheer demand.
Resale is also a crucial part of getting tickets and the Eras Tour was no exception. Resale tickets were going up for thousands of dollars (more than their face value) as the demand was so high. Swifties (Taylor Swift fans) were concerned about the portion of tickets that were up for resale, as there were meant to be no resale bots included in this sale. However, Ticketmaster assured that only 5% of tickets were up for resale.
After the nightmare of getting tickets, Taylor released a statement to address the situation to her disappointed fans. In the statement, Taylor stated that she is protective of her fans and disappointed with the system as she tried to provide the best way possible for Swifties to get these tickets. She went on to say that she hopes there will be more opportunities for her fans to get tickets.
Shortly after, Ticketmaster released their own statement, detailing how they were not able to deal with this record-breaking site traffic. Therefore, they slowed down the site to better handle the queue of verified fans.
After this, the real question is, what will happen to the general sale? Will there be one, and what if this happens again? Will Taylor Swift add more dates to the Eras tour?
And for European swifties… when are the dates being released?