Too Much Springsteen

“The Case of the $5,000 Springsteen Tickets – Triumphant fans showed up in Ticketmaster’s queue with special codes, only to encounter its ‘dynamic pricing’ system. Was the Boss OK with that?”:

This is why people hate the mainstream media. This was FRIDAY’S story, and today is TUESDAY!

If you’re interested in breaking news, go on Twitter. Maybe, and I mean MAYBE if someone famous gets shot, or if it’s a national disaster, the TV stations and maybe even the newspapers will cover it and be up to date. But they only seem to glom on to a story after it’s made a ton of noise online.

This is a broken system.

And who is this article for?

Certainly not for the fans. How many of them actually read the “New York Times”? As far as being forwarded, forgetting issues of the soft paywall, most people have made up their mind about Springsteen tickets, they’re on to new subjects. So who are you going to trust?

The traditional outlets are the most trustworthy, despite what people say, if for no other reason that they have more at risk, make a mistake and you risk getting sued, although the bar is very high in America, at least for now, the right and the Supreme Court would like to lower it.

But we live in a fast-paced society. Four days later is TOO LATE!

And who is going to read this in the “New York Times”? PEOPLE WHO DON’T CARE! This is not where this story needs to be placed, but on Reddit, in Bruce forums, where the people who buy tickets to the show go.

So what we’ve got is hearsay for days, based on some facts and a lot of opinions, and then the Grand Poobah weighs in when nobody cares and misinformation reigns.

Want to know what is going on?

Start with Twitter, then go to Reddit. They are the best places to find things out, especially Twitter, and Reddit is a great place to take the temperature, measure and evaluate the reaction. You’d think that some traditional news outlet would figure out how to marry these elements, put all the news in one place, a la WeChat in China, but the antique newspaper people don’t stop decrying the loss of newspapers when it’s a poor business model and papers are never coming back. People need NEWS, they don’t need newspapers.

As for Jon Landau’s comment:

“‘Regardless of the commentary about a modest number of tickets costing $1,000 or more, our true average ticket price has been in the mid-$200 range,’ he continued. ‘I believe that in today’s environment, that is a fair price to see someone universally regarded as among the very greatest artists of his generation.'”

You don’t defend the indefensible.

This is not computer code, zeros and ones. This is not facts, this is emotion, this is FEEL! Don’t tell people how to feel, that’s a losing game. If you want to respond you have to have sympathy, you’ve got to make them feel warm, you’ve got to make them feel understood.

As for all those tickets that were sold for a low price, most customers complaining DIDN’T GET THEM! Never mind it’s a tiny minority that is most vocal. You’ve got to ignore these people, you can never win.

Also, everybody lies in entertainment, and they’re almost never caught. If Landau wanted to talk about the ticket prices, he should have said that Bruce was upset about the situation, he had no idea tickets would appear so expensive. He loves his fans, he has a bond with them, he would never do anything to screw them over. WHERE IS THAT?

Of course, Jon may have told the reporter all this and the writer didn’t include it. Which is why when you want to make a public statement, YOU PUBLISH IT YOURSELF! More people will see what you say on your own Instagram/Facebook/Twitter/TikTok account than they will in the “New York Times.” In an era when you can go directly to the people, why bother to go through an intermediary, that’s positively old school. Young acts, athletes, seemingly every one of today’s celebrities makes their statement on social media, not the NEWSPAPER!

And the truth does not matter. Not whatsoever. So why are you trying to convince people to think one way when their heart says something else.

And you never want to do cleanup, you want to get AHEAD of the story!

If the Boss was going to talk, he should have fallen on his sword, this was a mistake. Something akin to an apology.

But the real story is this kerfuffle was passé, in the rearview mirror. Why talk to the “New York Times” at all? You don’t talk, there’s no story. The press is there to be manipulated, to be used, not to satiate. Reporters are the worst, they’ll bleed you dry and disappear. It’s a game, feed them gossip and information that doesn’t hurt you such that when you need a favor you have some cards to play. To keep a story out of the news. Sans Landau’s comments here, this “New York Times” story has essentially nothing new, there’s no news there! It’s not worth publishing without Landau’s comments.

And in today’s world it’s all about virality. If it’s a rehash of what’s already known, “Variety” got Ticketmaster’s view two days ago, a story is dead on arrival.

Of course the author could have done some real reporting, researched dynamic pricing with other acts. But that would have been too hard, too much effort on a story he didn’t really care about anyway.

And today’s story is not Springsteen anyway, it’s Adele in Vegas.

I saw a tweet saying tickets were priced at $40,000. I did a modicum of research, saw some bad seats going for four figures, like in the very last row, all resale, but it really doesn’t matter, the truth is irrelevant in a case like this. People don’t care enough to research, so the 40k number sticks. THAT’S the story.

And is there a ton of bitching?

Is there bitching about any other act using dynamic pricing?

NO! At least not anywhere near the intensity regarding Springsteen.

There is no way in hell you can convince me this wasn’t screwed up. I got an email today saying tickets were capped at a new Springsteen on sale at $2500. True? I don’t care! But they should be. Because as Landau said in this article, almost no one was paying those insane prices.

And I keep getting e-mail from people saying they paid reasonable prices. Why pour gasoline on the fire of high prices, why not wait for all the hard core fans to get tickets and ultimately be satisfied.

If you’re willing to wait…

A few hours, a few days, right before the show… Odds are pretty good you can score.

But with all this verified fan nonsense, people’s expectations were high, and what they got was in most cases…NOTHING!

They wasted their time. This was worse than showing up at ten a.m. without being verified!

Maybe you should have a lottery. If you’re really interested in being fair. But people will still complain, everybody wants an edge.

I’ll go even further than this… In today’s money-oriented society, NO ONE CARES ABOUT SPRINGSTEEN TICKETS EXCEPT HIS FANS!

Come on, even lousy baseball tickets are expensive. All NFL seats are expensive. Concert tickets have been expensive since hell froze over and the Eagles reunited in 1994. And then Napster and the internet caused them to go nuclear. You mean there are people bitching about high ticket prices still today? Do they still use flip-phones? Are they still on dialup?

And we all know concerts are not a commodity. And everybody knows you pay more for a unique service.

But you can’t convince the squeaky wheel.

This is my favorite e-mail I got in response to all this:

“Many years ago, my record store was a Ticketmaster outlet. You have no idea how many ticket customers, when we’d show them the venue layout and what seats were available, would look us in the face and say, dead serious, ‘You don’t have any in the front row?'”


As for the fees… THE ACTS ARE TO BLAME! But you can explain the economics over and over and the public refuses to acknowledge this. You’d think that Ticketmaster is run by the Mafia and the acts are beholden to them when just the reverse is true. As for promoter loyalty, the act will go with whoever pays them the most. And if Live Nation and AEG aren’t interested, there’s always someone who will step up for a sell-out act. And then there are the casinos that OVERPAY for acts just to bring people to the premises to gamble.

As for a monopoly…

This is where it gets dangerous, where the blowback gets severe, but the truth is Ticketmaster gets all these events BECAUSE IT CAN HANDLE THE TRAFFIC, IT DOESN’T BREAK DOWN! All these people e-mail me about their services, how they can solve all the problems. And true, they have features Ticketmaster does not, but can they handle millions of ticket requests simultaneously?

And to hammer Ticketmaster’s advantages even more… If you’re not on the service you’re immediately selling tickets with one arm behind your back. That’s where people go to buy tickets first, Ticketmaster. They see what is available there, it’s one stop shopping. Whereas if another service is employed…most people never even go there! Online, there’s one entity that dominates every sphere, Google in search, Amazon in commerce… And to dethrone them entails more than being better. It can be done, but it’s very difficult. AND TICKETMASTER IS AN E-COMMERCE COMPANY! Yes, you buy all those tickets through the INTERNET!

I’ve got no sympathy for everybody bitching about Springsteen ticket prices, grow up.

But I must say, these on sales have been mishandled from the get-go.

As for the truth…


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