So it’s that day we’ve all been waiting for, Sunday 7th October, you’ve somehow successfully woken up at 8:30am to give you an extra half an hour to play with, but then when the clock hits 9am and when you actually try and get yourself those tickets you’ve dragged yourself out of bed for the ticketing website is down. That’s exactly what happened this morning for the thousands of people trying to get hold of Glastonbury tickets.
What I don’t understand is why booking tickets online for any sort of gig is always so difficult. We’ve always been told that the demand is too high and that we should try again later, or if it’s really bad the page will simply fail to load. A company like SeeTickets for example should be used to this sort of thing. It’s the business they’re in and they should be good at it right? Wrong. The Glastonbury booking site started having issues around 15 minutes before tickets went live and a full hour after tickets went on sale only 50% had been successfully allocated. I’m no expert in this, but websites like Google, Facebook and Twitter are getting hundreds of thousands of hits every second and they don’t buckle. Now I understand that they have a lot more money behind them than for example See, but then why are we being charged an extortionate booking fee and card handling fees, on top of postage and packaging and every other fee you can think of under the sun for a service that is quite frankly crap?
I’ve always been quite lucky with these systems, I managed to get tickets for both myself and my girlfriend this morning 6 minutes after they went on sale and actually first got onto the booking page at 8:55am. In order to do this I had to draw up an action plan capable of infiltrating Fort Knox. I had the website open in 2 web browsers on my MacBook, then also on my iPad and Phone, refreshing constantly until I got through eventually on my iPad.
I got mine pretty easily but it took the festival 1 hour and 40 minutes to sell out. Not because there wasn’t enough demand, but because that’s how long it took See to process all of the attempts to buy.
Enough about the problem though, what we need is a solution, not just for Glastonbury but also for every other event that seems to have this issue. Glastonbury’s problem could’ve been solved pretty easily. Either See needs to increase their server capacity or Michael & Emily Eavis need to look into making tickets available from more websites to spread the demand and perhaps even on the high street. Remember when people used to queue outside Virgin Megastores, HMV etc at 9am just to get tickets? We need to bring that back again because clearly the internet isn’t the answer.
Perhaps this is actually a gap in the market that Google or Facebook could fill? They already have the money and the server capacity they need, a few days of PHP coding and they’ll have a foolproof ticketing system in their hands. Someone somewhere is definitely missing a trick here.
Anyway I’m going to stop ranting and leave you with this note from Michael and Emily.
After one hour and 40 minutes, tickets for Glastonbury 2013 have now completely sold out (in record time). We would like to say an enormous thanks to everyone who managed to buy a ticket – but we’d also like to extend our sincere apologies to the many thousands who missed out.
We’re genuinely humbled by the sheer number of people who would like to come to the Festival, and we dearly wish we couldhave you all along. Sadly, that just isn’t possible, which means a significant number of people have missed out. Tickets were being sold throughout the morning – but demand simply outstripped supply.If you were one of those who managed to get a ticket, then we look forward to welcoming you to Worthy Farm in June. If not, then there is likely to be a resale of returned tickets in the spring, and your registration will also remain valid for future Glastonbury Festivals – so we hope to see you down here at some point.
Thank you all again for your incredible support for Glastonbury Festival.
Michael & Emily Eavis