Washington Post: Taylor Swift demand overwhelms Ticketmaster, leaving fans waiting for hours

November 15, 2022 Media

Taylor Swift’s long-awaited return to touring spelled disaster Tuesdayfor live-events site Ticketmaster as fans scrambled to secure their seats for the singer-songwriter’s “Eras” show.

Millions of Swift fans descended on Ticketmaster early Tuesday to jostle for spots at “Eras,” her first tour in four years and as many albums. Many quickly took to social media to report glitches and delays that left them ticketless. Buyers reported frozen queues and broken checkouts on the site, and hours into the mayhem, Ticketmaster tweeted that demand for the shows was “unprecedented” and that people in queues should “hang tight.” It also rescheduled some presale events to Wednesday.

Ticketmaster has come under fire before for charging high service fees and enabling predatory resellers — some StubHub tickets have been priced at $12,000 or more. Chaos around the Swift tickets is just the latest example of Ticketmaster’s bad service, said Krista Brown, senior policy analyst for the American Economic Liberties Project, an antitrust nonprofit that has led the charge against the company.

But the incident could be a tipping point as concertgoers get increasingly frustrated. Messing with Swifties, as plenty of companies and individuals have learned, is a dangerous game.

“Ticketmaster said they’re experiencing a historic number of people on their site or like these are things they weren’t absolutely prepared for, but that’s kind of an excuse in my head,” said Allie Wesel, a 25-year-old in Chicagoland who said she’s been loyal to Swift since childhood. She’d been stuck in a frozen online queue for more than three hours.