BuzzFeed News

Reporting To You

Arts & Entertainment

People Have Feelings About How Taylor Swift Is Trying To Change The Way We Buy Concert Tickets

"Me showing Taylor my empty bank account after buying tour tickets and all of her new merch: look what you made me do."

Posted on August 25, 2017, at 6:28 p.m. ET

On Friday, Aug. 25, Taylor Swift dropped her new single, “Look What You Made Me Do” off of her upcoming album, Reputation.

View this video on YouTube

youtube.com

She also premiered a snippet of her upcoming music video for the single on Good Morning America.

WATCH: First look at the #LookWhatYouMadeMeDo video from @taylorswift13! #LWYMMDvideo

And if that wasn’t enough for fans of the pop star to get excited about, Swift also unveiled a new way for fans to buy tickets for her upcoming, not-yet-actually-announced tour.

View this video on YouTube

youtube.com

Fans can register on Taylor Swift Tix, a portal on Ticketmaster Verified, that’s being presented as a “fun way” to earn access to a Swift show, as well as an effort to fight against ticket bots and re-sellers.

ADVERTISEMENT

For years, re-sellers have been buying concert tickets through Ticketmaster and then getting big profits for them, and there's also ticket bot software that can automatically purchase a significant amount of seats when an event goes on sale.

An event is essentially sold out immediately, leaving fans to go to re-selling websites to buy tickets at a marked up price. According to the Economist, bots attempted to purchase 5 billion tickets from Ticketmaster in 2016, which is 10,000 tickets per minute.
Mike Coppola / Getty Images

An event is essentially sold out immediately, leaving fans to go to re-selling websites to buy tickets at a marked up price. According to the Economist, bots attempted to purchase 5 billion tickets from Ticketmaster in 2016, which is 10,000 tickets per minute.

Swift's new approach with Ticketmaster attempts to combat the bots by giving fans the chance to register, pick which city they want to see Swift in, and then, they have the "opportunity to engage in unique activities that advance your spot in line."

But a lot of those "unique activities" involve making purchases — like apparel and rings, and pre-ordering and purchasing Reputation. They also include joining the official Swift mailing list, watching a Swift video on the fan portal, and referring a friend to also register.

The official terms and conditions of Taylor Swift Tix say that “a purchase or payment of any kind will not increase your chances.” Further down, it also says, “You may then take one (1) or more of the following OPTIONAL fan engagement actions (“Boosts”) listed on the site and as defined below to improve your position in line to purchase tickets to Taylor Swift’s upcoming concert tour.” Despite the fact that the website says "no purchase or boost activity is necessary to enter or receive an access code," fans are still encouraged to participate in "boosting" activities that involve spending money in order "to improve [their] position in line to purchase tickets." Therefore, the more money fans spend on merchandise and on copies of Swift's album, the more likely they are to gain access to purchase tickets for a future concert.When reached for a comment on the approach, a representative for Ticketmaster pointed BuzzFeed News to the official terms of the ticket portal.
tickets.taylorswift.com

The official terms and conditions of Taylor Swift Tix say that “a purchase or payment of any kind will not increase your chances.” Further down, it also says, “You may then take one (1) or more of the following OPTIONAL fan engagement actions (“Boosts”) listed on the site and as defined below to improve your position in line to purchase tickets to Taylor Swift’s upcoming concert tour.”

Despite the fact that the website says "no purchase or boost activity is necessary to enter or receive an access code," fans are still encouraged to participate in "boosting" activities that involve spending money in order "to improve [their] position in line to purchase tickets." Therefore, the more money fans spend on merchandise and on copies of Swift's album, the more likely they are to gain access to purchase tickets for a future concert.

When reached for a comment on the approach, a representative for Ticketmaster pointed BuzzFeed News to the official terms of the ticket portal.

A lot of people took to Twitter to express their feelings about the fact that the more money you spend, the more likely you are to increase your chances of purchasing tickets to a Swift concert.

the only thing I don't like about Taylor Tix is that they prioritize people who spend more money on merch/albums which not everyone has

ADVERTISEMENT

Some were frustrated.

me, showing Taylor my empty bank account after buying tour tickets and all of her new merch: look what you made me do

Ok honestly this is so annoying. I understand it'll help eliminate bots but I am a die hard why should I have to bu… https://t.co/HaXp8E3tZB

And others thought it was a savvy move on Swift's part.

tbh i don't think the "Taylor Swift Tix" thing is very fair. whoever spends the most money is held as a priority for tickets.

Taylor Swift is providing earlier access to tickets to fans who buy multiple copies so the album. This is how she’s going to sell 1m copies

ADVERTISEMENT

In an interview with BuzzFeed News, John Breyault, the vice president of public policy, telecommunications, and fraud at the National Consumers League, called Swift's new ticket buying process is "confusing."

"I think she means well. Artists don't like to see scalpers making money off of their fans, but at the same time, she's a business woman," Breyault said.

Frazer Harrison / Getty Images

Breyault also said bots have been a problem "for years," and that Swift is far from the first artist to try and solve the problem. "I don't have any real confidence that this is going to be any different when it comes to this program," he said. "I think the way to address it is by making more tickets available to your fans to begin with. But the way to make that happen is with transparency."

Graham Denholm / Getty Images
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT