A story known All Too Well: The Taylor Swift Ticketmaster saga


Illustration by Akhila Nadimpalli

Gracie Moore, Reporter

Ticketmaster and the Senate saw the wrath of many Taylor Swift fans after chaos ensued while thousands of them hoped to get tickets to Swift’s first tour in four years. 

The first round of tickets for the Eras Tour went on sale Nov. 15. 

This was a pre-sale through Ticketmaster’s Verified Fan Program, which their website said helps to prevent resellers and bots from buying tickets to ensure real fans have a higher chance of getting tickets. 

But to Ticketmaster’s misfortune, this program didn’t work didn’t work as expected for Swift’s highly in-demand tour.

Some fans waited in queues that lasted two to four hours. Others experienced the site crashing right when they were about to buy tickets. 

Fans were enraged after waiting for hours just to be kicked off the website. Plenty of resellers were able to snag tickets, though, with some StubHub listings as high as $12,000.  

But even for the lucky ones, service and processing fees can reach around 30% of the ticket’s value, according to The Hustle. 

First off, one company shouldn’t be able to profit this much on extra fees and charges. Even more so, Ticketmaster should be held accountable for making promises they couldn’t keep. 

Because of these flaws and faults, the U.S. Senate held a hearing for the Ticketmaster and Live Nation monopoly. 

Filled with puns and reality show-like moments, the Jan. 24 hearing lasted three hours. 

The CEO of SeatGeek, Inc., John Groetzinger said that many venues fear moving sales away from Ticketmaster at the risk of losing revenue from Live Nation concerts. 

Singer-songwriter Clyde Lawerence said that Ticketmaster doesn’t tell artists the service fee price ahead of time, which has led to his band having fees up to 82%. 

The hearing brought up more ideas and questions, such as the fact that many of the fees charged with tickets are completely hidden from buyers. 

There’s no way to figure out what some of the charges are from this company. 

It’s frustrating for fans and artists alike to only have one main avenue for buying and selling tickets. It’s completely unfair to those who do not have $500 to spend on a single ticket to see their favorite artist. 

Monopolies may not be illegal, but when their power is misused, they can become immoral quite quickly. 

I understand that being fair for every financial situation isn’t possible and sometimes luck plays a major role in getting tickets, but surely there are ways for Ticketmaster and Live Nation to make live events more accessible to all.

While I adore Swift and her music, there are more important things to focus on in the government. 

If this many people took a stand against Congress about issues like gun violence and equal rights, changes might be made quicker. 

However, I empathize completely with every fan fighting to get tickets, especially those like me who have been fans for quite some time. I have been lucky enough to go to almost every one of her tours with my mom, so the nostalgia and time with her make the lack of tickets even more upsetting.  

While it’s important to hold big corporations accountable, it’s vital to understand that some issues hold more precedence than others. 

There’s nothing wrong with that. It just means that for every Ticketmaster fiasco you protest, try looking out for paths of action for climate change or human rights. 

Hopefully this is the last time Ticketmaster blunders a presale, especially with Beyoncé’s RENAISSANCE World Tour right around the corner.

Long story short, let’s just hope they can shake it off and fix the multitude of issues with ticket sales.