Taylor Swift: How her fans crashed Ticketmaster news
The public sale of tickets for Taylor Swift's newest tour was cancelled by Ticketmaster on Thursday following a frenzied few days that highlighted both Swift's enormous fan
base and the shortcomings of the music industry's preeminent ticketing system.
It has called into question the status of Ticketmaster, which is owned by entertainment giant
Live Nation and reportedly controls 70 per cent of the U.S. market for ticketing sales, as a monopoly in the field and has spurred a wave of anti-monopoly advocacy among not only
Swift's fans but U.S. lawmakers.
After millions of Swift's fans, otherwise known as Swifties, got locked out of Ticketmaster's Verified Fan system, designed to weed out bots
versus "real" fans, while others faced various technical difficulties and long wait times, several U.S lawmakers took to Twitter to express their criticism.
excessive wait times and fees are completely unacceptable, as seen with today's Taylor Swift tickets, and are a symptom of a larger problem," U.S. Congressman David N. Cicilline,
who chairs the House’s antitrust subcommittee, tweeted on Tuesday.
"It’s no secret that Live Nation-Ticketmaster is an unchecked monopoly."
The U.S. Justice
Department is currently conducting "an antitrust investigation" involving Ticketmaster and Live Nation, which predated the recent chaos.
It was prompted when Live Nation and
Ticketmaster merged in 2010 to create the company Live Nation Entertainment, with the goal to investigate an abuse of its monopoly power over the live music industry, according to
the New York Times.
HOW THE TAYLOR SWIFT ON-SALE TURNED UPSIDE DOWN
The first of three tiers of "presales" for Swift's first public tour since 2018, started on Tuesday.
This was done through Ticketmaster's Verified Fan program, which aims to sift out bots and speculators in favour of buyers who are most likely to be real fans.
presale, 3.5 million people signed up for the program, the largest registration in the company's history and 1.5 million of them received a special access code and were "invited"
to the sale for Swift's tour, according to a later-deleted blog post by Ticketmaster.
A waiting list was created for the remaining two million confirmed fans.
"Historically, working with Verified Fan invite codes has worked as we’ve been able to manage the volume coming into the site to shop for tickets," the company said.
"However, this time the staggering number of bot attacks, as well as fans who didn’t have invite codes, drove unprecedented traffic on our site, resulting in 3.5 billion total