Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby BBadger » Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:53 pm

AntiM wrote:The regionals have been selling out for years now. I know our Utah burn approaches its cap frequently.


I stand corrected.

socks wrote:Its shameful on what i have been seeing on the eplaya.Burner v.s. Burner.The have's v.s. The have not's.The blame falls at the feet of BM.org for this Coup Fatal they have dealt to our burner community.So when we see tickets in mass show up for sale by the scalpers in June i am very sure BM.org will have another spin on that too.


The only "coup fatal" people are feeling now is the fact that in a fair distribution of tickets (not "have vs. have nots") tickets that does not respect camp divisions, rather than camps exercising their purchase power early and getting their tickets in groups. The old social order is broken down in the name of fairness, in order to fight scalpers who are far more capable in exploiting predictable ticket distribution systems.

And yet here you are, bitching and moaning about BMorg and scalpers. On one hand you complain that scalpers will be plaguing the community in June, but on another hand, you're complaining about the systems put into place to mitigate their effects (most of which haven't even been brought to bear). It's like those moronic unemployed French students who, on one hand protest for more jobs, but also want all the employment benefits and rights that lead to a lack of jobs.

BMorg can't win right? Anything they do, and think of doing, will bring fault. It doesn't matter if a solution has even been exercised. The mere fact that change has occurred, and that things could be potentially worse than they were in non-equivalent past situations is enough for people to bitch and moan about how things will play out. THAT is shameful. THAT is moronic. THAT is why some people never get promoted beyond the role of sheep that fear the lightning.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby bradtem » Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:06 pm

Here's an interesting question:

What if the lottery system had allowed you to group your requests together with others, ie. the other members of your camp? And that this was done so that either your entire group got tickets, or none of you got tickets.

Your probability of going would still be the same in this system (turned out it was about 1 in 3.) It's just that everybody in your group would share the same fate. For those camps that lost it would of course be a big shock, the whole camp skipping a year and a serious challenge to fix that in the resale market if that was the plan.

Under the system used, each camp got about 1/3rd of its members, and is deciding whether to not go, or to see if it can get resale tickets for enough members to get large enough to go, but knowing that several will not come.

Of course, even if such a system were available it would not be mandatory. People could decide to group together in a lottery or go on their own. In fact, half the camp could join together and the other half go it alone -- it would be entirely up to each person and camp.

If that were available, would you have done it?
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Eric » Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:10 pm

socks wrote:Its shameful on what i have been seeing on the eplaya.Burner v.s. Burner.The have's v.s. The have not's.


My personal opinion on this?

I couldn't agree more with the first of your statements- the Burner vs. Burner is getting ugly. Very ugly. I can't even talk with people I've camped with about it because it becomes a shouting match, and these are people who are friends. The fighting between Burners who don't actually know each-other is worse, far worse.

The second I see as more nuanced- more between people who think the Burn has been destroyed by this and people who admit it's going to be different, but that different doesn't have to equal "bad". There are "haves" and "have nots" on both sides- I've certainly seen people who have tickets but think the event is ruined, and I'm one of the ones who doesn't have a ticket but think it's just going to change.
(full disclosure: Mods are not automatically given tickets for our volunteering- while it has happened a couple times in the past I'm certainly not expecting it this year)

I think the hard part is recognizing that we've hit the point where so many people want to go to this amazing thing we've created in the desert that we can't all get in anymore. That's not the LLC's fault, that's not our fault. It's just that there are now more people wanting in than there are tickets.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby lemur » Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:31 pm

bradtem wrote:Here's an interesting question:

What if the lottery system had allowed you to group your requests together with others, ie. the other members of your camp? And that this was done so that either your entire group got tickets, or none of you got tickets.

Your probability of going would still be the same in this system (turned out it was about 1 in 3.) It's just that everybody in your group would share the same fate. For those camps that lost it would of course be a big shock, the whole camp skipping a year and a serious challenge to fix that in the resale market if that was the plan.

Under the system used, each camp got about 1/3rd of its members, and is deciding whether to not go, or to see if it can get resale tickets for enough members to get large enough to go, but knowing that several will not come.

Of course, even if such a system were available it would not be mandatory. People could decide to group together in a lottery or go on their own. In fact, half the camp could join together and the other half go it alone -- it would be entirely up to each person and camp.

If that were available, would you have done it?


if the lottery allowed people to do that groups would be requesting blocks of 300 tickets, 100 tickets, theyd surely tend to round up. if they need 15 many would get 20, "just incase". i dont see this as being a great idea. considering that many of the people in those blocks likely are just.. whether its unpleasant to hear or not.. just hangers-on and not really vital to making the camp happen (though they may be vital as community members for those who do make the camp happen, and for that subcommunity to properly enjoy themselves).

if we are going to prioritize theme camps and the like i think we should be working to prioritize what those projects actually need to make their project happen more so than making sure every person in that subcommunity can come.. (we already see the LLC doing this when they prioritize the people needed to get-er-done in the early entry process)

i think its vital to make sure as many people get a chance to come,.. if we blow our load on just the theme camps.. who is gonna be there to enjoy the theme camps? (we need newcomers and non-theme campers too!!)

theres gotta be some middle ground where enough theme camps, mutant vehicles, art groups,etc..get to come (maybe not all 700+ camps, 300+ art projects 700+ mutant vehicles with 100% getting tickets) while also leaving room for the vital influx of new ideas and people in the form of newcomers and just regular participants showing up without any committed projects.... maybe we will see that happen in the next few years!
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby quema del mono » Sat Feb 11, 2012 4:36 pm

There's no doubt that a significant percentage of tickets were purchased by speculators and scalpers but how high a percentage? Since a CC # can only be used to purchase 2 tickets how are these supposed scalpers buying up 50% of the tickets? What is the source of these multiple cards? A "casual" speculator will use their own cards or those of family/friends and most likely attempt to purchase fewer than 10 tickets but a professional scalper would want to purchase much more than 10. Does a scalper have access to 20-50 credit cards or are they using pre-paid debit cards. Can a retailer (such as BMORG) determine if a particular CC # is from a pre-paid card? Would this be a way to get a rough estimate of how many tickets were requested in the lottery by professional scalpers? I'm asking a lot of questions because I (like everybody else here) don't have ANY answers and this is more of a stream of consciousness than reasoned analysis anyway...
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby bradtem » Sat Feb 11, 2012 4:41 pm

Yes. Since most venues use a variety of techniques like checking credit cards and addresses to block scalpers, serious scalping operations have access to many hundreds of credit cards and addresses. A typical way it is reported they do this is they have legions of recruits that they pay to buy tickets to events they are targeting. I don't know how much they pay, I suspect it's not that much. It's pretty easy money for the recruit, and not that expensive for the scalper.

I do not have any information on whether scalpers of this sort have targeted Burning Man.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Savannah » Sat Feb 11, 2012 4:46 pm

quema del mono wrote:There's no doubt that a significant percentage of tickets were purchased by speculators and scalpers but how high a percentage? Since a CC # can only be used to purchase 2 tickets how are these supposed scalpers buying up 50% of the tickets? What is the source of these multiple cards? A "casual" speculator will use their own cards or those of family/friends and most likely attempt to purchase fewer than 10 tickets but a professional scalper would want to purchase much more than 10. Does a scalper have access to 20-50 credit cards or are they using pre-paid debit cards. Can a retailer (such as BMORG) determine if a particular CC # is from a pre-paid card? Would this be a way to get a rough estimate of how many tickets were requested in the lottery by professional scalpers? I'm asking a lot of questions because I (like everybody else here) don't have ANY answers and this is more of a stream of consciousness than reasoned analysis anyway...


Welcome to the board, quema del mono. (You can also post a thread in the "Introduce Yourself" forum, if you like.)

There's not a lot of info publicly shared about the Org's anti-scalper techniques. It aids scalpers in working around them.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby knowmad » Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:03 pm

Savannah wrote:
quema del mono wrote:There's no doubt that a significant percentage of tickets were purchased by speculators and scalpers but how high a percentage? Since a CC # can only be used to purchase 2 tickets how are these supposed scalpers buying up 50% of the tickets? What is the source of these multiple cards? A "casual" speculator will use their own cards or those of family/friends and most likely attempt to purchase fewer than 10 tickets but a professional scalper would want to purchase much more than 10. Does a scalper have access to 20-50 credit cards or are they using pre-paid debit cards. Can a retailer (such as BMORG) determine if a particular CC # is from a pre-paid card? Would this be a way to get a rough estimate of how many tickets were requested in the lottery by professional scalpers? I'm asking a lot of questions because I (like everybody else here) don't have ANY answers and this is more of a stream of consciousness than reasoned analysis anyway...


Welcome to the board, quema del mono. (You can also post a thread in the "Introduce Yourself" forum, if you like.)

There's not a lot of info publicly shared about the Org's anti-scalper techniques. It aids scalpers in working around them.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Stephendragonfly » Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:24 pm

There are a lot of different kinds of scalpers out there. From opportunists who buy a two tickets, one for themselves and one to scalp for enough to cover their whole BM trip, to gang bangers, who use their gang to take advantage of economies of scale, to professional agencies who pay people minimum wage (or less) to man phones, computers, and creditcards the instant tickets go on sale. Its the big time pros who I suspect got most of the scalped tickets. These are the kind of guys currently listing eight tickets on Stubhub for $999 apiece (when nobody honest would have more than four). They are gambling on the perception of ticket scarcity. They gamed the lottery, and they would have gamed a first come first serve system as well. Gaming ticket sales is how these guys make make money. If they make a lot of money on Burning Man this year they will go berserk next year. To stop them now we need to hang together as a community and not pay more than face value for any ticket. The desperation and frustration displayed by of some people make that unlikely. Of Course BMorg could make the tickets non transferable or limit transferability, but this would constrain the value of radical inclusiveness. The problem with radical inclusiveness in ticket sales is that it includes people who only want to make money off of the event. In the end, Burning Man is now a victim of its own success, everybody who ever went and told anyone else how cool it was is at fault for its current level of popularity.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby 5280MeV » Sun Feb 12, 2012 2:49 pm

Stephendragonfly wrote:The problem with radical inclusiveness in ticket sales is that it includes people who only want to make money off of the event.


Perhaps the idea of "radical inclusion," when interpreted as such, is simply a bad principle.

What "radical inclusion" means to me - and what I aim to practice, independent of what the BMorg, the 20 year veterans, the virgins, or anyone else might think is this:

We are going to have a culture together, with music and art and feasts. But there is not going to be a VIP lounge, there is not going to be a sense of what it means to be a really cool burner. The aim is not to have a status. No matter if someone has a mohawk, is a millionaire accountant, knows all the lingo, barely speaks English, wears a Star Trek uniform all day, wears nothing, is a superstar DJ, works at a deli counter, is a pyrotechnic artist, is a gospel singer, can't sing but does anyway, quotes movies in an annoying way, or whatever - They are all one of the 'cool kids'. That to me is what it is supposed to be about.

But there simply have to be rules, there has to be a sense of civic duty, and there has to be some sense of a social agreement. All of the above things are cool. Being a violent alcoholic, getting drunk, and starting fights is not cool. Leaving behind a big mess is not cool. Walking around looking for people who appear vulnerable and harassing them until they break down is not cool. Vandalizing artwork is not cool. Profiting off Burning Man is not cool.

If you tolerate these things, then you can't have a community - because these things destroy a community. I'm not saying that you can't forgive, reform, or give second chances, but like it or not, in reality there are rules or there is a social breakdown.

Right now, there are no rules in the ticketing process, and there is a social breakdown.

Right now, fairness in ticketing has been interpreted as 'everybody gets the same thing'. Try applying such an interpretation to education - which I would expect we as a society would promote as something universal or 'radically inclusive'. What happens to the people that need special attention, that need something different? That need more time to understand a concept, or need more challenge to be stimulated?

Another interpretation of fairness is 'each according to their needs'. This means according to their needs as individuals, and the reciprocal needs of the community. If a collective wants to donate thousands of hours, tons of materials, and give an incredible gift to the community, then the collective effort needs to know in advance if they are or are not going to the event. Amazingly, this appears to me to be all that they are asking for - not money, not gift tickets, not freebies, just an answer.

At first, I thought that the lottery was fair, but only because it is fair to me. My plan is to make some wearable LED work, maybe volunteer to help an art project, and also take a couple of shifts with one of the departments. So I don't need to go to to Burning Man every year, I don't need advance notice. I can take my electronics and go to a regional, and try again in 2013. My camp is pretty minimal and DIY. They will miss me, I will miss them, but I will hopefully go another year.

I am a good candidate for a lottery system. I registered for my ticket, I signed up on the volunteer list, luck was with me this year, and I won. Had I lost, I was thinking about trying out Transformus.

Now I am holding a ticket like a sad clown, and what decimated project am I going to volunteer to help for an afternoon? To what wreckage of a collective do I send 20 bucks for a kickstarter? Sure, I am fine with reenacting an 'old style' burn - the man on haybales, dancing to some prerecorded DJ set on a battery powered stereo - I believe in making my own fun. But what about all those people who have been planning for months, working their asses off, and spending their hard earned money to do something grand FOR ME TO ENJOY?

Do I just forget about them? I don't know what to think right now. I'm bummed.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Colonel Monk » Sun Feb 12, 2012 6:22 pm

The CO wrote:Oh, and uh...

Don't buy from scalpers.
Face value or fuck off.


Thanks. Can't say it enough.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Colonel Monk » Sun Feb 12, 2012 6:41 pm

lhorthy wrote:Large numbers of tickets have started showing up on scalper websites like :

Stubhub => 86 tickets in large blocks, 82 over $700, top price $1650.
VividSeats => 38 tickets in large blocks, 30 over $1000, top price $1720.
TicketsNow => 23 tickets over $1000, Many large blocks (8 or more)

Time for BMORG to void the lottery and redo with name on ticket to enter. They can cover the cost of this by using pdf print at home tickets instead of printing fancy counterfeit proof tix.


I kinda agree with this. If you have your name and info on the ticket, and need to show your ID with the ticket to enter (just to make sure they match), AND the only exchange of tickets can occur on the STEP system for face value to the new ticketholder the speculation and scalper issue is DEAD.

They simply would not be able to do ANYTHING untoward with the tickets.

Now, this does put some additional pressure on the Borg in having to reprint tickets and collect the old tickets, if that's how it would work but at least this madness would stop.....

Hmmm, you know, you wouldn't even need the name of the ticketholder on the ticket. Simply have a serial number for the ticket. Handheld scanner shows who the owner of the ticket is, they have to show ID to enter with the ticket.

Why is that so hard?

I was so pissed last year trying to find a ticket for a friend, and seeing how many people on ebay were offering "burning man vacation packages" and charging $5000 for ticket and all the trimmings - they claim they aren't scalping but I think if you want to go to the event you need to sort it out yourself.

I really hope this does sort itself out because I don't have a ticket and I never intended to miss a single year. But I'll be fucked in the ear before I ever buy a ticket from a scalper.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Colonel Monk » Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:06 pm

KestrelSF wrote:
If this is even fixable at this point, it is going to require drastic and immediate action on the part of the LLC. It is clear that we will HAVE to go to non-transferrable ticket system. Sorry if that doesn't "feel" good for folks that feel like tickets should be transferrable, it's just the only thing that would work.


Here here. Announcing that they still want people to be able to "gift" tickets and all as a reason to NOT to the non-transferable tickets is just stupid. Who Cares? Make a system where it's possible to buy a ticket and transfer it to these people via the STEP program.

Make it so they can buy a friend a ticket, just like I could buy you a song on iTunes - it's not that hard.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Colonel Monk » Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:26 pm

Mitch wrote:Frogbird: I agree that the tiers do complicate matters and that the $240 tickets clearly and the $320 tix with hindsight were riskless and therefore would have drawn a lot of bids.

But I also think the theme camps mostly would have bid at the $390 range. When you're spending several thousand dollars, and extra $150 to ensure your place doesn't seem like much, and it was clear that the 10,000 $240s would sell out.

In fact, if you do assume that bidding at the two lower tiers was high and that the big camps bid $390 for most of their tix, that means that there were even MORE overall bids than 130,000.


You know, though I read the material surrounding the registration process, I somehow missed something big about HOW it would be conducted.

I did not realize that registering for a tier 2 or 3 ticket improved my chances. I have bought tickets in past years at the lower tier when I was lucky, and the higher tiers when I wasn't. This year I am unemployed so I figured I'd cheap out and buy a less expensive ticket as Burning Man is going to be difficult to afford this year. I didn't know it would hurt my chances of getting a ticket.

Really, now that this has become such a giant hot mess, they ought to gut the Tier structure. Keep the low income program around, but just make all the tickets the same, and ensure that everyone in the lottery has the same honest chance to get a ticket. The fact that more wealthy were able to get their tickets annoys me - the ticket pre-sale just seems like a money grab to me. Those with Money to burn could just pay any price just like they could to a scalper and get their tickets.

We all should have known that effing presale was a precursor to this disaster - it was almost like advertising "HEY, IF YOU DON'T WANT TO GET STUCK IN COACH WITH THE REST OF THE PEOPLE, YOU CAN PAY US A PREMIUM FOR FIRST CLASS."

And please, people - stop with the cute videos already - though I like them, it does seem that given the pop cap of 50,000 your publicity of the event is only hurting it! I have only introduced one person to the event, someone that I felt had something to offer and he has not disappointed. Unfortunately, it seems that there's not enough room for everyone, and while that might suck I'd rather be able to get a ticket each year than bring new people to the desert.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby bradtem » Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:32 pm

If you can transfer a ticket via the STEP program or in any other way, you can scalp. Names or pictures on tickets don't stop scalping if you have some way to change the name. Sure, the transfer system can make you sign a declaration that you paid face value and sold at face value and put in all sorts of threats etc. but the reality is that when tickets are sold above face value, everybody knows what is going on. You might scare away a few folks, but people who buy from scalpers don't do it because they want to. They would much rather buy at face value, obviously, if they could easily find somebody. So it's a choice of buy from a scalper (and lie when you click a box on the transfer system) or not go to the playa, people pick the former.

The only way you can avoid ticket speculation (by scalpers and burners) is if you can't transfer at all, you can only return the ticket for a refund, whereupon it goes to the next person on the waiting list. (Said waiting list ordered in any number of possible ways including first-come-first-served, or a 2nd lottery or other methods.)

This means you can't sell a ticket to a friend or campmate. But why does your friend deserve a ticket that was allocated to you by lottery over somebody else who is ahead of them on the waiting list?

However, non-transferable tickets can be "sold" if the person is going to enter Burning Man with you, if it is desired to do it this way.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Colonel Monk » Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:34 pm

Kranster wrote:Well that's that then. Burning Man 2012 will be "The Year of the Fiasco": where the ethos of non-identity tickets met the professional scalpers and burners lost their shirts and many old theme camps shrank and folded. Or as I said yesterday, BMorg tried to invent a wheel that was even better than the old round one and are shocked it did not work as well. Maybe they pull a rabbit out of a hat, or burners succeed in acting as a community against the scalpers. Maybe they make changes for 2013!

I sure am glad I have one ticket and live 100 miles away so I can have a look at whatever happens out of the chaos without spending $1000's along the way. I should probably cart all my extra supplies and a lot of water. I suspect many of the people that show up won't have a clue about structural integrity of Walmart tents in 70mph windstorms, and no one brings enough water the first time.

Oh well, I have always heard that last year was the last good year, and this year isn't going to be as good!


Hah, not to be too mean-spirited, but yeah, if I can't get a ticket then I wish for a really hot and dusty year with alot of wind. Two years of pretty damn nice weather hasn't scared off the sissies that don't have the love for a good dust storm.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Colonel Monk » Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:38 pm

Theres Always One wrote:
Long term, people. Let's all make it the worst year ever. Tell the newbies. Tell the media. Nothing to see here.


Yessss, yessss......

When the going gets weird, the Weird Go Pro!

We shall assemble an Army - no, we won't be able to go in the event, but we can run a campaign against it's success - a means to an end..... hahahahaha! :twisted:

Hee hee, but seriously, let's do go pro....
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Colonel Monk » Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:49 pm

chrispassanisi wrote:I just hope people don't start buying the scalped tickets. I believe enough tickets will be coming up over the summer that non-professional speculators will be panicked to get rid of them at cost. DON'T FEED THE SCALPERS!! I'd rather burn my bins in the back yard that pay some speculative son-of-a-bitch's rent. But I don't believe that 50% are in professional scalpers hands- I think it's a very small number, actually.

Image


Me too - I'd love to see the faces of those effing idiots when they can't sell their ticket above face - please please please, don't buy from scalpers. If you do see an ad on Craigslist for a ticket above face value, do the following (if you need a ticket):

Go to the meet with $390 and not a penny more. Show up like there's nothing out of the ordinary.

Hand them the cash, get the ticket, and walk away. Leave them just DAZED and BEDAZZLED. Don't take any shit whatsoever - it's $390 and that's it. If they are lucky and had a 240 ticket they make some money, otherwise, what the hell are they going to do? Call the police that you didn't allow them to scalp a ticket?
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby bradtem » Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:00 pm

You can't tell people not to buy scalped tickets. They don't *want* to buy them, they would rather buy face value.

What you can do is not sell to scalpers at face value. That means if you want to sell a ticket at face value, make sure you're selling it to a burner. Ask to talk to them on Skype or Hangout before the sale. You can often tell if they are a burner. If they say they have been before, get a picture of them on the playa before you videoconference with them. Or meet in person and demand this.

If they are a virgin, well, you have to decide, are they really one, or are they a scalper?

If you can't be sure, you have to decide if you want to risk feeding the scalpers. Given the choice between a burner selling a ticket to a scalper for face value, and the scalper selling it for $300 above face value, and a burner selling it for $300 above face value and donating $300 to a worthwhile art project fund, which one is actually better for the community?

The more scarce tickets are, the more the scalpers make -- remember that.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Colonel Monk » Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:03 pm

bradtem wrote:If you can transfer a ticket via the STEP program or in any other way, you can scalp. Names or pictures on tickets don't stop scalping if you have some way to change the name. Sure, the transfer system can make you sign a declaration that you paid face value and sold at face value and put in all sorts of threats etc. but the reality is that when tickets are sold above face value, everybody knows what is going on. You might scare away a few folks, but people who buy from scalpers don't do it because they want to. They would much rather buy at face value, obviously, if they could easily find somebody. So it's a choice of buy from a scalper (and lie when you click a box on the transfer system) or not go to the playa, people pick the former.

The only way you can avoid ticket speculation (by scalpers and burners) is if you can't transfer at all, you can only return the ticket for a refund, whereupon it goes to the next person on the waiting list. (Said waiting list ordered in any number of possible ways including first-come-first-served, or a 2nd lottery or other methods.)

This means you can't sell a ticket to a friend or campmate. But why does your friend deserve a ticket that was allocated to you by lottery over somebody else who is ahead of them on the waiting list?

However, non-transferable tickets can be "sold" if the person is going to enter Burning Man with you, if it is desired to do it this way.


Well, not sure about your first statement - if the transfer of funds was thru the borg wouldn't that prevent it from being sold above face value? That's what I had in mind - if the STEP program doesn't work like that then they might just as well forget it. I have yet to find details on the program despite looking thru the site to find it.

I'd be OK with just getting a refund too - like you said, that would totally fix the problem.

Hopefully this gets figured out with only one disaster year. Again, I shall endeavor to persevere to buy a legit ticket thru the Final Sale or STEP or my burner network but barring that I won't be buying from a scalper - I'll fly in on a paper airplane from razorback and crash land into BRC before that.

CM
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Stephendragonfly » Mon Feb 13, 2012 1:59 am

Just out of curiosity, what would happen if all the longtime burners who didn't get tickets showed up en masse the same week with all of their stuff in another location, like Death Valley (Frying Man), The Grand Canyon (Falling Man), Niagra Falls (Drowning Man), The Petrified Forest (Stone Man), Mono Lake, (Pickled Man), or Devil's Tower (Viagra Man). (Ok most of those are probably out because they are national parks/monuments but use yer imaginations, there are other cool places) Could y'all create an even cooler event competing directly with Burning Man (and thus dropping population pressures). Just a thought for all of the angry, frustrated, ticketless Burners.

(No, I haven't got a ticket, yet. Pretty much the only way in for me this year is Low Income)
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby wraith » Mon Feb 13, 2012 7:17 am

Stephendragonfly wrote:Just out of curiosity, what would happen if all the longtime burners who didn't get tickets showed up en masse the same week with all of their stuff in another location, like Death Valley (Frying Man), The Grand Canyon (Falling Man), Niagra Falls (Drowning Man), The Petrified Forest (Stone Man), Mono Lake, (Pickled Man), or Devil's Tower (Viagra Man). (Ok most of those are probably out because they are national parks/monuments but use yer imaginations, there are other cool places) Could y'all create an even cooler event competing directly with Burning Man (and thus dropping population pressures). Just a thought for all of the angry, frustrated, ticketless Burners.

(No, I haven't got a ticket, yet. Pretty much the only way in for me this year is Low Income)


Well, unless someone's going to be spending a lot of time in advance arranging the logistics, wherever they went would end up a disaster zone. 10k+ people without any toilets for a week is recipe for nasty. :wink:
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Key Man » Mon Feb 13, 2012 9:25 am

Colonel Monk wrote:
...if the transfer of funds was thru the borg wouldn't that prevent it from being sold above face value?

CM


Not really. A seller could still say to a buyer "Pay me $500 and then I'll send a request to transfer the ticket to your name through STEP". You'd pay your premium directly to the scalper, then pay face value (or face value plus "convenience fee", depending on how the program is structured) to the STEP program.

It seems that registered names and "anonymous" transfer would the only airtight way to ace out the scalpers.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby JCarter » Mon Feb 13, 2012 10:30 am

AntiM wrote:
Sorry your big theme camp can't make it. But not one of those people will fall over dead because they can't go to Burning Man. IT IS A VACATION, NOT THE BE ALL AND END ALL OF LIFE. I'm sure you'll miss your friends, I know I'll miss mine who can't go. But we won't die. And for those of us who do make it to the playa, we'll be fine without whatever it is your camp does.



And with that I think you just summed up the underlying problem to the whole ticket thing(or at least the thing that worries me).

It seems that for a lot of people, this really IS the end all and be all of life. When they say that Burning Man is "home" they mean it. TTITD really is their life.

In previous years that was fine because everyone who felt that way got to "go home".
If Neil deGrasse Tyson pulled me off the street to tell me about astronomy that would be awesome. If I was in Amsterdam when this happened and could convince him to tell me about it at a coffeeshop it would be ideal. Just sayin'.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Stephendragonfly » Mon Feb 13, 2012 11:38 am

wraith wrote:
Stephendragonfly wrote:Just out of curiosity, what would happen if all the longtime burners who didn't get tickets showed up en masse the same week with all of their stuff in another location, like Death Valley (Frying Man??),


Well, unless someone's going to be spending a lot of time in advance arranging the logistics, wherever they went would end up a disaster zone. 10k+ people without any toilets for a week is recipe for nasty. :wink:


Hmm, guess I didn't think that through very well,
2.0
What if some of the wonderful people who lead theme camps but didn't get tickets got their act together now to have another event in another place (Copyright Infringement Man??)? Since these guys have experience working out the logistics of getting many people, materials, etc together to make cool stuff for BM, how much of a stretch for them would it be for them to put on a Small Festival??
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby theCryptofishist » Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:25 pm

Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Sage Venkman » Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:28 pm

Stephendragonfly wrote:Just out of curiosity, what would happen if all the longtime burners who didn't get tickets showed up en masse the same week with all of their stuff in another location...


BLM already issued an advisory bulletin that they are going to put any such thing in the hurt locker. Now, whether they have the man power to do that, that's a whole other thing.
"When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby Stephendragonfly » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:17 pm

I know of some ex Norcal RenFaire folks who, deciding that RenFaire had gotten too commercialized for them, set up a (very private, secret, invite only, you didn't hear about this from me) Lord of the Rings themed camping trip (no, I don't know where or exactly when). Maybe that would be the way to go.

I am seeing ads on Craigslist, not just tickets for sale/wanted, but for whole theme camps and mutant vehicles. I am surprised that people who are so into Burning Man would give up on getting tickets so soon. I just think it is a waste for people to just give up on all the work that they have put into creating something really cool. I know it takes time and dedication to set up big theme camps, but it seems a little early to just give up.

I mean what if Bmorg held 10,000 tickets back to sell in STEP as one of their anti scalper measures?? Priming the pot might make STEP more workable. What if one of the ideas behind the lottery and Fertility 2.0 was to test the resiliency of the Burner community? I believe that people who are really determined to make it to Burning Man and make it something special will succeed.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby theCryptofishist » Mon Feb 13, 2012 4:55 pm

I think the llc had no idea what the ticket drawing and STEP would engender. I doubt it would have been any better with 1c1s.


I know of some ex Norcal RenFaire folks who, deciding that RenFaire had gotten too commercialized for them, set up a (very private, secret, invite only, you didn't hear about this from me) Lord of the Rings themed camping trip (no, I don't know where or exactly when). Maybe that would be the way to go.
I'd not be surprised if it ever happened, but I don't expect to hear about it.
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Re: Do the math: over 50% of tickets went to scalpers

Postby kp_higgs » Mon Feb 13, 2012 5:23 pm

I agree. The actual percentage it totally speculative...but, I believe many tickets went to people wanting to sell them above face value. I think the prospect of making a lot of money scalping attracted many non-burner folks to enter into the lottery. My friends' dad who lives in Reno said his neighbors were telling him to enter the lottery so he could make money selling the tickets...said they heard about it on a local radio station. Plenty of non-burners (and maybe burners, too) dont see a problem with scalping the tickets.

So the only way to combat this is to announce that tickets can only be transferred or gifted through STEP, online, no paper tickets will be issued, and you will have to use your ID at the gate.

The gate entry system will have to be totally overhauled as well as the STEP program to allow gifting and online transfering...even returning your ticket to someone on the waitlist. Burners not wanting to use their ID's at the gate will rant about it...but they ranted years ago about using their credit card to purchase tickets...and now they're doing it this year.
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