Live Nation and Ticketmaster have been using the new paperless ticket system which requires the customer to buy the tickets with a credit card and then use that credit card at the venue door to get access to your seats. They’ve used the excuse that they have implemented this to thwart scalpers, but the real reason is control.
There are several problems that fans have to deal with now if they want to see a concert as a result of the new paperless tickets.
The first problem is you need to have a credit card. Most people do have credit cards, but in this day and age it is not uncommon to find people without any credit cards, maybe just an atm card. And who wants to put their atm card and information all over the web. And if you don’t have a credit card, your stuck. So people with limited incomes and those who choose not to use credit cards are left out. Nice customer service.
At the box office, it’s the same thing. You need a credit card. Not only that, Live Nation and Ticketmaster are going all inclusive with the service fees. So you not only have no idea what the face value is without the service fees, but you can’t tell how much you are actually paying in fees any longer. And at the box office, you will now pay service fees on tickets, because they are all rolled into the price of the ticket. Nice customer service.
Then you have the problem of only one person paying for the concert tickets for the entire group and the group hoping that the ticket buyer doesn’t get sick and cannot attend the concert, because nobody else in the group will attend the concert either. Nice customer service.
Tickets are now sold up to 10 months in advance for concerts. Plans change in that amount of time. You cannot resell or give your ticket away, so again you are stuck if you something else comes up, or you lose your girlfriend/boyfriend. I’ve seen it happen, more than once. Again, nice customer service.
But Ticketmaster and Live Nation with Irving Azoff are not into customer service so they could care less what hoops the fans have to go through and the prices they will be jacking the tickets up to in the name of the “fan experience”.
They are out to extract every last dollar they can from the fans, until they chase them away, just like they did with CD’s.
If Ticketmaster and Live Nation really wanted to do something for the fans they would start by pre selling the tickets at the venue first. That way locals could buy their tickets before the ticket brokers and wannabe ticket brokers around the country snap up the best seats. They could also do something for the fans by having a pre sale for the locals by restricting the ticket sales to certain zip codes in the area.
There are ways to get the tickets into the hands of the fans, without forcing them to use credit cards and restricting their right to change their mind and resell that ticket if they want to. But as fans are soon to find out, it’s now more about controlling the money, then the fan experience.