Technology may make our lives easier and more fun (hello, every single app you've ever downloaded) -- but in some ways, it's also kind of putting a crimp in the way we get access to entertainment. Chiefly, it's making it harder to get really great concert tickets at a price we can actually stomach. According to the clever folks over at Buzzfeed, there are some pretty concrete reasons why that's the case. Here are just a few of them:
- Scalper bots: Just like anything else online, it's possible for clever internet users to set up bots which can operate on their own. These set-it-and-forget it ticket buyers are able to snap up tickets before actual humans can, allowing scalpers to sell them back on websites like StubHub.
- Crazy service fees: Hey, guess who's making a giant profit off concert ticket sales? Everyone but you, basically. Ticket brokers, promotional companies and even big artists get a cut of all those little add-ons. But what's even more maddening? That ticketing companies, like Ticketmaster, actually charge more service fees for the nice seats -- meaning if you want to sit close to the action, you'll be paying more for the pleasure than the folks a few rows back.
- Fan clubs: Celebrity fan clubs used to basically be glorified mailing lists with a lot of swag, but with fan sites driving huge merchandise sales, a lot of artists want to ensure that their online fans are happy, so they set aside tickets just for them. Unfortunately, scalpers have caught onto this and will often join these fan clubs to buy up tickets before the rest of the general public.
- Credit card presales: Remember waiting in line for concert tickets? Yeah, neither do most people, because it's just as easy to wait and order tickets online. But that's not the reason it's harder to get the good seats -- sometimes, it depends on what's in your wallet. Credit card companies will often establish sweetheart deals with ticketing companies, which means those who are buying with the right card can get tickets before everyone else.
- VIP/Guest list tickets: As stars entourages grow, so, too, do the number of VIP and guest list tickets which are given away to friends, family, and other insiders -- meaning they never even make it to the hands of regular people. Which is less of a technology problem and more of a nepotism problem, but still.
Fortunately, there are still ways you can get great seats to awesome shows -- like, you know, liking STAR 101.5 on Facebook, where we've been known to give away secret tickets from time to time. Or, you can check out our Contests page for other ways to win.