Ticketmaster Just Apologized to Taylor After Ticket Disaster ‘Pissed’ Her Off—Here’s What Happened

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Taylor Swift
Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for MTV/Paramount Global

A whole ordeal. Taylor Swift’s Ticketmaster mayhem has been making headlines. Since the general sale of her long-anticipated Eras tour was canceled, Taylor responded to the Ticketmaster crash that left a whole heap of Swifties without tickets to her tour. 

On November 18, 2022, the “Anti-Hero” singer posted a statement on her Instagram stories about her Eras tour ticket sales. “It goes without saying that I’m extremely protective of my fans.  We’ve been doing this for decades together and over the years, I’ve brought so many elements of my career in house,” she wrote. “I’ve done this SPECIFICALLY to improve the quality of my fans’ experience by doing it myself with my team who care as much about my fans as I do. It’s really difficult for me to trust an outside entity with these relationships and loyalties, and excruciating for me to just watch mistakes happen with no recourse.” 

She continued explaining the strenuous outcomes of her fans trying to attain tickets, “There are a multitude of reasons why people had such a hard time trying to get tickets and I’m trying to figure out how this situation can be improved moving forward. I’m not going to make excuses for anyone because we asked them, multiple times, if they could handle this demand and we were assured they could. It’s truly amazing that 2.4 million people got tickets, but it really pisses me off that a lot of them feel like they went through several bear attacks to get them.”

Taylor Swift

Image: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

However, Taylor expressed her gratitude for the patience of her fans and their fierce battles to try to attend her concerts. She concluded, “And to those who didn’t get tickets, all I can say is that my hope is to provide more opportunities for us to all get together and sing these songs. Thank you for wanting to be there. You have no idea how much that means.” Read below on why Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour general sale was canceled. 

Why was Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour general sale canceled? 

Why was Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour General sale canceled? On November 17, Ticketmaster tweeted that the general public sale of the Eras Tour was canceled because of inventory. Or rather, lack thereof. “Due to extraordinarily high demands on ticketing systems and insufficient remaining ticket inventory to meet that demand, tomorrow’s public on-sale for Taylor Swift | The Eras Tour has been canceled,” the tweet read. 

Taylor Swift Instagram

Taylor Swift Instagram

Taylor announced The Eras Tour in November 2022, which is her first tour in over five years. The tour—which was announced less than two weeks after the release of her most recent album, Midnights—is a “journey through the musical eras” of Swift’s past 10 albums: 2006’s Taylor Swift; 2008’s Fearless; 2010’s Speak Now; 2012’s Red; 2014’s 1989; 2017’s Reputation; 2019’s Lover; 2020’s Folklore and Evermore; and 2022’s Midnights. Due to the current health crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic, Swift’s most recent four albums—Lover, Folklore, Evermore and Midnights—will be performed on tour for the first time on The Eras Tour.

The tour had two presales before the general sale. Fans were encouraged to sign up for Ticketmaster’s “Verified Fan” system which would give them the chance for an exclusive presale code. Only a certain percentage of the people who signed up were emailed a code to use during the sale. However, when the presale started, fans waited in the queue for hours, some presale codes didn’t work, multiple crashes impacted the website and seats were selling out at an exuberant rate. Fans who had a Capital One card had a second chance to obtain tickets, but like the first sale, the presale sold out in a matter of minutes. 

Fans expressed their frustrations on social media towards the ticketing company. “You’re the problem. It’s you,” one fan tweeted in reference to Taylor’s single “Anti-Hero.” Another fan pointed out that the site was supposed to limit the number of tickets sold during the presales. “did u guys like forget the point of a presale is to sell a limited number of tickets? this is ur ENTIRE job … so unfair to everyone,” they tweeted

In a deleted and reposted blog post, Ticketmaster explained why the presales were overwhelming and apologized for the inconvenience. “We strive to make ticket buying as easy as possible for fans, but that hasn’t been the case for many people trying to buy tickets for Taylor Swift | The Eras Tour,” the blog post read. “First, we want to apologize to Taylor and all of her fans — especially those who had a terrible experience trying to purchase tickets. Next, we feel we owe it to everyone to share some information to help explain what happened.” They claimed that 3.5 million people signed up for the verified-fan presale and that it was the most sign-ups in Ticketmaster history. Only a fraction of the people got a pre-sale code, and typically 40% of fans invited to purchase tickets at the presale actually do so, and they buy an average of three tickets. “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 site wrote.

The demand alarmed Taylor’s team to add more dates to the tour, however, the site kept on crashing for 15% of the users who were waiting online. In the end, the Eras Tour sold 2 million tickets in one day, which is the most tickets sold for an artist on the website. The site also reported that according to the traffic on the website during the sales, Taylor would have to perform 900 times at a stadium to accommodate every fan who was trying to get a ticket. Greg Maffei, the chairman of Live Nation Entertainment, Ticketmaster’s parent company went on CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” to explain that the problems were due to Taylor’s impact. “It’s a function of Taylor Swift,” he said. “The site was supposed to open up for 1.5 million verified Taylor Swift fans. We had 14 million people hit the site, including bots, which are not supposed to be there.”

On November 18, the New York Times reported that the Department of Justice is investigating Live Nation Entertainment’s abuse of power. Though the investigation predates Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour disaster, the situation brings to light a bigger question of the live event company’s influence on the music landscape as a monopoly. Lawmakers such as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called out the merger deal between Live Nation and Ticketmaster when she tweeted, “Daily reminder that Ticketmaster is a monopoly, its merger with LiveNation should never have been approved, and they need to be reigned in. Break them up.”

Taylor Swift "Midnights"

Image: Courtesy of Republic.

Midnights by Taylor Swift

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