The Taylor Swift team and Ticketmaster have added a new and profitable twist to fan ticketing. Every dollar spent on Taylor Swift merchandise that a fans buys moves them forward in the line to purchase tickets to her concerts, when they go on sale.
In an effort to battle ticket scalpers and drive fan engagement, singer Taylor Swift has partnered with Ticketmaster to launch a new online ticketing platform, Taylor Swift Tix.
Powered by Ticketmaster's 'Verified Fan' program, which the company touts as a way to defeat automated ticket purchasing software, the system requires fans to register ahead of time through tickets.taylorswift.com to be eligible to purchase tickets
The service has been used by other artists in the past, including Dead & Company and most recently Bruce Springsteen for his highly sought after eight-week run at the Walter Kerr Theater in New York. However, Taylor's doing things a little differently. Fans will be incentivized to participate in online activities or 'boosts' to generate points that are used to move closer to the front of the line for tickets.
Boost points can be gained through something as simple as watching a music video, or commenting on social media, but are also commerce driven, with boost challenges such as buying Swift's forthcoming album ‘Reputation’ up to 13 times a day, from 13 different retailers. Fans can also gain boost points by buying Taylor merch such as $45 dollar t-shirts or $75 dollar hooded sweatshirt from her online store.
However, as Jezebel pointed out, the fine print for the boost points doesn't' really guarantee tickets at all, stating “participation does not guarantee access to purchase tickets or the ability to purchase tickets.”
While the Swift team pitched the idea as a way for fans to “beat the bots” it appears to instead throw them on a consumer treadmill in a bid to 'unlock ticket access' and needless to say, at least some of her fans are underwhelmed.
"the only thing I don't like about Taylor Tix is that they prioritize people who spend more money on merch/albums which not everyone has,"wrote Twitter user @ewitsjacob
"I just don't like the idea of fighting to prove myself as a fan to buy concert tickets!!!" another twitter user @AllTooTaylor__ wrote.