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Computer World
February 24, 2012 10:03 AM   Subscribe

Last week, Kraftwerk announced eight concerts of eight full albums in eight days at the Museum of Modern Art. Each individual would be allotted a maximum of two tickets for one night. On Wednesday, tickets went on Sale at noon and due to the incredible demand, things went downhill immediately. ShowClix, the ticket retailer attributed it to server stress and at 1:21 PM announced that all eight shows had sold out. Many unhappy customers vented on ShowClix Facebook page. Today, Showclix CEO Joshua Dziabiak issued an apology for the "hours [you spent] in front of your computer watching a spinning wheel." Meanwhile, scalpers are peddling tickets for up to over $42,000, although some less expensive tickets may be available.
posted by griphus (32 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
I would like to take this opportunity apologize to all the friends I showed a bad attitude to on Wednesday afternoon due to ShowClix's terrible website.
posted by azarbayejani at 10:07 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


I can't wait for the parasites who run Ticketmaster, ShowClix etc. to get brought in front of a judge for scalping, and the judge keeps raising the cost of bail. That would be sweet justice.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:11 AM on February 24, 2012 [12 favorites]


That's a lot of money to produce on faith.

Seller's Note: These tickets are paperless. You will receive them at the venue on the day of the event.


Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.
posted by Kimberly at 10:11 AM on February 24, 2012


excellent use of the "debacle" tag

perhaps "kerfluffle" and "brouhaha" and even "mishegoss" may also be applicable.
posted by elizardbits at 10:13 AM on February 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


Yeah, I wanted to catch a couple nights of this show set, but I didn't want it $40,000 worth. Tix were like forty bucks when I saw them at the 9:30 a few years back, and even then that was steep for a single show (good show tho).
posted by FatherDagon at 10:13 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


This was the best of the 'queue' parodies I heard that day.
posted by interrupt at 10:13 AM on February 24, 2012 [7 favorites]


You know your ticket system is bad when people are wishing they were dealing with Ticketmaster instead.
posted by griphus at 10:14 AM on February 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


When something is as wildly in-demand as this, would it be so wrong to use a lottery system? Give everyone three hours to put their payment credit card in, then randomly pick who gets tickets. Seems more fair than giving scalpers a huge advantage.
posted by Sticherbeast at 10:14 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


OK, here's another: IT'S NO FUN TO BE QUEUED.
posted by interrupt at 10:16 AM on February 24, 2012 [3 favorites]


The disdain in those videos is very efficient. Binary +1s to the fans who can't get tix.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:19 AM on February 24, 2012


When something is as wildly in-demand as this, would it be so wrong to use a lottery system? Give everyone three hours to put their payment credit card in, then randomly pick who gets tickets. Seems more fair than giving scalpers a huge advantage.

Sounds like a great idea to me. You could even accept submissions to the lottery over a series of days/weeks, preventing everyone from rushing your site all at once and borking it.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 10:23 AM on February 24, 2012


$42,000 per ticket? That's not a joke?!

I wouldn't pay that much to travel back in time and see them on their 1975 Autobahn tour.
posted by naju at 10:26 AM on February 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


$42,000 per ticket? That's not a joke?!

It is until someone pays it.
posted by anagrama at 10:33 AM on February 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


When something is as wildly in-demand as this, would it be so wrong to use a lottery system? Give everyone three hours to put their payment credit card in, then randomly pick who gets tickets. Seems more fair than giving scalpers a huge advantage.


Are you keeping tabs on what is going on with Burning Man this year? They opted for the lottery system and everyone got screwed. Major installation camps reported only being able to get tickets for anywhere from 10-30% of their crews, so they took the remaining 10k that was supposed to go into a second lottery towards those camps so that there's some semblance of past playas.

Their "fix" is to create an exchange system so that anyone that got excess tickets can sell them at face value to people that had registered for the lottery, but people are giving them to their friends and fellow campmates instead, so scammers are still going to win in the end.
posted by june made him a gemini at 11:00 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Are you keeping tabs on what is going on with Burning Man this year?

Relevant FPP.
posted by griphus at 11:05 AM on February 24, 2012


Are you keeping tabs on what is going on with Burning Man this year? They opted for the lottery system and everyone got screwed. Major installation camps reported only being able to get tickets for anywhere from 10-30% of their crews, so they took the remaining 10k that was supposed to go into a second lottery towards those camps so that there's some semblance of past playas.

Burning Man is different. It's a yearly event with its own culture and regulars. This is a series of rare concerts. There are no "past playas" to speak of; an older fan has no more claim on the show than a newer fan. For a Kraftwerk reunion show, there's no legitimate reason to say that a big crew has more of a right to attend the concert as a bloc than several smaller groups (or individuals).
posted by Sticherbeast at 11:10 AM on February 24, 2012 [4 favorites]


I have friends who wanted to get tickets for these shows desperately and didn't get any. I've had a lot of trouble getting seats for big shows (it took me five attempts, as in five different shows to get tickets for a Lady Gaga show) and I'm almost to the point of deciding never to do it again because it's so much trouble for big shows. I have to admit I didn't expect to see this level of trouble from a Kraftwerk show, though.
posted by immlass at 11:33 AM on February 24, 2012


I'm still peeved. I had queues open on my iPhone and on my work desktop, and it tried to load the next page after the "Queue" screen, and then would just fucking time out.

Apologies are fine, but that doesn't give me back my lunch hour or get me in to see them perform Computer World.

Anyone know if they'll be live streaming or something?
posted by SansPoint at 11:46 AM on February 24, 2012


Hitler reacts to Kraftwerk MoMa ticket limit
posted by phaedon at 11:54 AM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


I have to admit I didn't expect to see this level of trouble from a Kraftwerk show, though.

One of the issues was that unlike, say, Gaga, who plays stadiums, this was a show in a 300-seat venue. So over eight days that's 2400 tickets total. Except you can safely assume everyone was going to buy two tickets, so, effectively, there's only 1200 slots. So, if you believe ShowClix numbers, 50,000 individuals were trying to get 1200 pairs of tickets. That's roughly one ticket per 40 people.
posted by griphus at 12:02 PM on February 24, 2012


One PAIR of tickets per 40 people, rather.
posted by griphus at 12:03 PM on February 24, 2012


phaedon - that's part of the FPP...
posted by azarbayejani at 12:42 PM on February 24, 2012


Why does stuff like this always happen! Could ShowClix-TicketMaster-Ticketek-Whatever consider, just for one moment, that their servers are going to be under immense stress when tickets go on sale? If you're an online ticket seller, then maybe sorting out load balancing/queuing is the big important thing to get right? Nevermind that the websites themselves are always a shitty experience....
posted by Enki at 12:56 PM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


If you're an online ticket seller, then maybe sorting out load balancing/queuing is the big important thing to get right?
What's the business case? It's not like they're stuck with oodles of unsold tickets now.
posted by brokkr at 1:03 PM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is as always the problem with shows in NYC. Radiohead was a similar shit show. And that was rigged so scalping was virtually impossible.
posted by JPD at 1:03 PM on February 24, 2012


The only thing that sucks about a $40K scalped ticket is that the artist doesn't get $40K. I honestly don't understand why shows like this don't start their pricing at $40K or whatever and the price drops by X every hour on some basis until they're all sold. If they're worried about long-term but poor fans not getting in, sell some cheap, non-transferrable tickets by lottery alone.
posted by seanmpuckett at 1:05 PM on February 24, 2012


because then the audience would be nothing but bankers.
posted by JPD at 1:11 PM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Dave Matthews' eyeballs just did that dollar-sign/cash-register-noise thing and he has no idea why.
posted by griphus at 1:13 PM on February 24, 2012


;tldr:
POp minimalists everywhere were furious.
posted by Twang at 3:39 PM on February 24, 2012


Finally, a scenario where it is entirely appropriate to say that you were bleeped off.
posted by Elmore at 3:55 PM on February 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


Apologies are fine, but that doesn't give me back my lunch hour or get me in to see them perform Computer World.

Anyone know if they'll be live streaming or something?


I saw what I guess was the test-run of this series of shows a few months ago - they had the 3D movies going but rather than playing a full album, they played a mixed set. It was fun, and worth the money, but honestly - you could get a copy of their set at Tribal Gathering 1997 and listen to that on a good pair of headphones and not miss out on much other than a minor souvenir, a bit of a headache from the 3D, and amazement that Ralf Hütter doesn't sound even more bored than he does singing the same songs he's sung for decades.
posted by cmonkey at 11:40 PM on February 24, 2012


I have a friend who somehow managed to get a ticket for not one but TWO different nights. (*infinite jealousy*)

I told him he could probably get $300-$500 for each and he didn't believe me- but I never imagined $42k...

Huge lols at the video interrupt posted.
posted by ghostbikes at 10:57 AM on February 25, 2012


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