By: Georgia Spaulding

When Taylor Swift announced her Eras Tour, everyone knew that the demand was going to be massive. But no one expected the pandemonium that would ensue.

Swift announced that people could sign up for the Verified Fan Presale and then, if you had a Capital One Card, they could participate in an exclusive Capital One Presale on the same day. Over 3.5 million people pre-registered for the Verified Fan Presale, but just 1.5 million people sent codes. The remaining people were placed on a waitlist.

On November 15th, people signed on to Ticketmaster with the hopes of buying tickets, but Ticketmaster could not keep up. As soon as the presale started, most people’s queues were paused immediately upon entering the site, as Ticketmaster could not handle the demand. People waited for as long as seven hours in the queue hoping to get in and buy tickets, but by the time most got in, their show(s) were sold out. For those lucky enough to get into the site in time, they faced numerous errors that sent them back to the queue or made it to where they could not secure tickets. Additionally, many ticket seekers had been given invalid codes. 

Due to the Verified Fan Presale debacle, the Capital One Presale was moved to the next day, but nothing changed. Long queue lines and website errors persisted, leading to outrage from fans seeking tickets.

Ticketmaster was forced to cancel the general sale, which was supposed to take place on November 18th, due to “extraordinarily high demands” and “insufficient remaining ticket inventory”. One would think Ticketmaster, the main ticket distributing company in the world, would have been better prepared for this situation and would not have sold as many tickets as they did, but this was not the case.

In the aftermath of the situation, Taylor Swift said that she and her team asked Ticketmaster if they could handle this demand and they were “assured” that they could. Ticketmaster has also come out and said that many bots attacked their website during the presale, which resulted in their website “breaking”. Since this situation, the US Justice Department has opened an antitrust investigation into Ticketmaster’s parent company, Live Nation, on whether they have abused its power over the multibillion-dollar live music industry. Is this a prime example of an illegal monopoly? Only time will tell.

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