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A New Era of Fairness: An open letter to Taylor Swift’s team on how to fix ticket releases

February 15, 2024
Audrey Fairbrother
Sr. Content Marketing Manager

There hasn’t been much talk about Taylor Swift lately. 

LOL, just kidding.

We all know Taylor can barely sneeze without dominating the headlines. From her captivating Love Story (yes, there will be song references) with Travis Kelce to the fact that she’s single-handedly boosting the world’s economy one concert at a time. 

But the most recent headlines are, once again, centered on some ‘Bad Blood’ between Swifties and the ticketing platforms releasing seats for her Eras Tour. This time, ire is focused on Ticketek AU.

It’s not a hot take. Unfortunately, stories of endless queues, scams, and insane resell prices have been the common Invisible String experienced by millions of Swifties anxious to attend what’s been the highest-grossing tour of all time. We just wrote about the same issue in the US back in June. 

But if we’re honest, this problem plagued ticket sales way before Taylor’s groundbreaking tour, and it’s happening to hot artists everywhere, all the time. So why make Taylor the Anti-Hero?

There are two reasons:

The first is because fans believe she truly cares. Swift has shown her compassion for her fans time and time again. Whether in her personal outreach and support during the COVID-19 pandemic, her generosity toward the truck drivers on her tour, or her handwritten thank-you notes to concertgoers, she’s known to go above and beyond to do the right thing for her fans and teams.

The second, fans believe if anyone can reshape a broken industry, it’s Taylor. After all, she’s already done it twice — in a big way. 

By re-recording her early catalog and releasing the songs as “Taylor’s Version,” Taylor asserted her control over her own artistry and reclaimed ownership of her music in a way that few artists have dared to do. The move not only served as a powerful statement against the injustices in the industry but also set a precedent for other artists to follow.

Then, she released her Eras World Tour movie directly to AMC Entertainment, bypassing the traditional studio system model and paving a new path for creators. 

So, why can’t our favorite Mastermind fix the corrupt monopoly that is the concert ticketing industry? 

We think she can.

An Epiphany: Taylor’s team can guarantee fair access for fans

If Taylor’s past game-changing moves have shown us anything, it’s that she likes to take a more direct route to her fans and get creative about solving problems. 

Which would make her a perfect pioneer for a primary sales platform like EQL.

EQL is no stranger to handling releases that come with the heat of a thousand suns. The tech behind drops like the Nike x Tiffany sneaker and the Crocs x Salehe Bembury collab can be easily applied to the ticketing industry if someone is brave enough to be the first. (Looking at you, Taylor!)

Here’s how it would work: 

  • The Eras Tour launches tickets directly on EQL. 
  • The backend prevents the common headaches Swifties know All Too Well, including queues, crashes, and bots and scammers grabbing all the stock. 
  • Real fans are entered into a draw, all with a fair and equal chance of securing tickets. Shady behavior is caught and filtered out. 
  • Actual human fans get their tickets — and those who don’t have a better chance of scoring for the next show, thanks to EQL’s proprietary EQLizer technology.

This model has existed in the world of high-heat commerce for years. Live events are a natural next frontier. 

But hold up. Maybe it’s true that not everyone should be given exactly the same shot. Right? There are fans, and then there are FANS.

We agree. And we have a solution for that, too. 

Loyalty is important, but presale codes suck

If you’ve been a Swiftie since the days of Tim McGraw, we think your VIP status should be respected and rewarded. And most fans agree. We recently ran a poll asking if people thought die-hard fans should get products first over casual consumers, to which 71% of respondents said yes.

But presale codes are terrible. They’re ripe for scams, and pretty much useless if you’re still contending with issues like endless queues or crashing sites. 

Instead, tech like EQL can segment out different groups of VIPs on the backend after entry, upweighting entrants who meet specific criteria and providing them with an increased chance of scoring tickets over more lukewarm fans. 

As an example, fans who purchase Taylor Swift merchandise and belong to Swiftie fan clubs can be given preference for tickets in a draw, without having to worry about waiting sweaty-palmed at a computer for a code to come in that may or may not work. Sounds like The Best Day to us.

Honest resale: both of these things can be true

(If you picked up on that reference, you’ve truly proven yourself.)

One of the biggest problems fans are facing, especially for this latest Ticketek release, is trying to identify scammers among legitimate resellers. After all, the only thing more heartbreaking than not getting tickets is getting fake tickets. Imagine rolling up to your venue, decked out in homemade friendship bracelets, only to realize your papers are a fake. That Hits Different. And unfortunately, it looks like thousands of Australian fans are in for that exact fate.

Now, imagine an alternative. All ticket sales are run through a primary sales platform like EQL, with a clean record of all legitimate ticket holders, and a verification system for resell. Call us the New Romantics, but we truly believe this is a world that together, we can create. 

And the opportunities don’t stop at tickets. Eras Tour merch, and yes, even Eras Tour popcorn buckets could get their chance at a fair release with EQL. 

So, are you Ready For It?

The new era of fairness in ticketing, that is? Because we certainly are. We’re looking forward to the day we can look back at the ticketing industry and say “Wow, Everything Has Changed.” 

So we’ll end this the same way we did in the early days of The Eras Tour:

Could EQL really handle the traffic volume of billions? If the sales were sequenced sensibly, yes. 

Could EQL get tickets into the hands of real fans first and reward their devotion to a beloved artist? Yes. 

Does ticketing need to be turned on its head, and could EQL x Taylor Swift lead the way? Absolutely.  

This Is Us Trying, Swifties.
Audrey Fairbrother
Sr. Content Marketing Manager

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