How Taylor Swift And Zach Bryan Are Giving Ticketmaster Its Long-Overdue "Karma"
The chokehold that Live Nation and Ticketmaster have on the entertainment industry is quite literally illegal. Their outrageous monopoly has come to the point where the U.S. Department of Justice is calling them out, citing Section 7 of the Clayton Act or Section 2 of the Sherman Act. In a recent hearing about the Taylor Swift Eras Tour fiasco, their questionable merger with Ticketmaster is further investigated, as the company is coming under serious fire.
“I want to congratulate and thank you for an absolutely stunning achievement. You have brought together Republicans and Democrats in an absolutely unified cause,” Senator Richard Blumenthal said to Live Nation's CFO. "Ticketmaster ought to take a good look in the mirror and say, 'I'm the problem. It's me,'" he added, quoting Swift's own #1 hit "Anti-Hero."
“I believe in capitalism, and to have a strong capitalist system, you have to have competition,” said Senator Amy Klobuchar. “You can’t have too much consolidation — something that unfortunately for this country, as an ode to Taylor Swift, I will say, we know all too well.” For anyone living under a rock, this is another iconic reference to Swift's lyrics during the hearing. "All Too Well" is the star's 10-minute magnum opus, which broke the record for Billboard's longest-running #1 hit song.
The Taylor Swift presale set the bar even lower with Ticketmaster, when record high demand for the superstar's Eras Tour tickets crashed the site. They pushed back presales for cities on the west coast by three hours, and the Capitol One presale by a day. Due to overselling during this time window, the general public onsale was cancelled altogether. At the same time, resale prices ranged in the ten thousands.
Ticketmaster blamed this on "bots" and "scalpers," and continued to do so in their hearing this week - but fans aren't satisfied with this expanation, and rightfully so. Several have pointed out how this whole situation could have been avoided. For one, the ticketing site themselves picked how many Verified Fan codes were sent out, so it's irrational for them to claim that they weren't expecting such high numbers in the presale. Furthermore, Ticketmaster has the power to revoke sales from resellers - yet they choose not to in order to make greater profits. Last but not least, the platform is responsible for setting face values of tickets, which often reach the thousands - not even including taxes and fees.
Naturally, outcry followed on social media, especially TikTok.
Prominent Swiftie creator Lizzie Warrick has called out Ticketmaster in several videos. Some of them show snarky, hilarious tweets from other Swifties sharing their perspective on this disaster.
Though Swift's may be the most well-known Ticketmaster incident, she's far from the only artist that the ticketing giant has messed up sales for. Fans are never shy to communicate their frustrations.
Country star Zach Bryan has expressed frustration with the ticketing platform for years, and sympathized with frustrated fans during Taylor Swift's presale week. In his own tour announcement - which he delivered in this hilarious video - he committed to fair pricing and strict prohibition of scalping. With his much-needed efforts, Bryan is showing the industry that these things can be controlled, and big players like Live Nation truly have no excuses.
Bryan also has titled his live album "All My Homies Hate Ticketmaster (Live From Red Rocks)." He first tweeted this during Taylor Swift's presale, shortly after his historic snow show at the legendary amphitheater. At this point, it has sort of become his motto.
We couldn't agree more with the Swifties, as well as Zach and his homies. When all we want to do is enjoy our favorite artists in concert, greedy CEOs in need of even more money mess it up for us. Is this the end of Ticketmaster? We sure do hope so.