How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Want to talk about tickets? You've come to the right place

How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby seanmichaelhunt » Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:41 am

How we got screwed by the Burning Man Organization ticket department:

My roommate David and I were hoping to make this our first burn. We spent the better part of a year doing research, reading the survival guide, blogs and stories, and watching every video out there. We joined a theme camp, and volunteered our time, effort, resources, and skills to making sure it would be a great experience for us, as well as others.

The biggest challenge of this was the sheer cost. David and I are both artists, myself an actor and he does multi-medium creative work. Neither of us has had steady income in the last year, and I recently lost my secondary job. We worked hard at pulling from resources we already had, to avoid spending money, and we both applied for the low-income ticket program.

Our first attempt to obtain tickets was through the lottery, which we entered at the lowest tier, because it was the most we could afford. We all know how the lottery went. Just to make sure we covered our bases, we both registered for STEP, in the hopes of getting an offer for the least expensive ticket, and we both applied for the low-income ticket program.

David was awarded a low-income ticket. I got a very nice email saying "after careful consideration…"
I was however, lucky enough to be offered tickets through STEP, and after scraping together what I could, and a little help from some friends, I was able to afford it. I received an email that said this:

"You are being offered tickets at whichever face value is available, plus applicable delivery and service fees. You will have 72 hours to buy tickets using your unique link - nobody else can use it and it cannot be shared. After 72 hours the purchase link will expire and the tickets will be released to the next person on the list."

I went to my "unique link" registered in my name, that "nobody else can use and cannot be shared", which was sent to me, at my email address, and I purchased the "non-transferrable" tickets using David's credit card (as mine did not have the required balance) and I paid David in cash. The other ticket was reserved for a friend who could afford it.

"Non-transferrable" was a term seen and stated often when referring to STEP tickets and I think everyone understood that these tickets were "non-transferrable". I took that to mean this:

These STEP tickets, which I registered for under my name, are being offered to me, and me alone. No one else may purchase these tickets and I may not purchase them and give them to someone else. When I click on my "unique link" and pay for these tickets they will belong to me and be in my name, as I was the person they were offered to.

Turns out, this is not what "non-transferrable" means at all. A week ago, David got an email saying his low-income ticket had been revoked. According to Rebecca he had purchased tickets, in his name, for himself through STEP and therefore was not eligible for a low-income ticket. David sent an email back trying to explain, I did too. The only response he received (I received an auto-response saying my email had been received) was that as he had purchased the tickets with his credit card, they were in his name and were "non-transferrable". If he doubted this he could refer to the STEP "FAQ". I referred to the "Frequently Asked Questions" regarding STEP, though I find FAQ a strange place to be sent for official rules and regulations. Here is what I found:

Q:I bought my STEP ticket with my friend's credit card and now it's in my friend's name. Can I or my friend have the name changed to mine?
A: No, tickets purchased through STEP are non-transferable, which means no name changes. For your friend to get their money back they will need to sell the ticket back into STEP.

Notice anything funny about this? Yeah, I did too. First of all, there's the past tense wording. "I bought my step ticket…" This already happened. Someone already made this mistake and you're telling them it can't be fixed. If this question is being asked so "frequently" as you put it, don't you think you should have warned people beforehand. Shouldn't it have been stated that you could not purchase a STEP with someone else's credit card, that in order to purchase a ticket you must have a credit card in your name? Why did I receive a confirmation email that I had purchased tickets, and why do I keep receiving ticket holder updates? How many other people bought a ticket with someone else's card and think they have a ticket in their name at will call? I can assure you, this particular frequently asked question did not appear here until after people started buying STEP tickets, because this question could not have been asked, until after people started buying STEP tickets. So why am I being referred to this as proof that I should have known better when it did not exist until after I made my purchase.

So here we are, me with no ticket, and David with one he can't afford. Here's the kicker. A couple weeks after I bought, (or thought I bought) STEP tickets, I received another email:

"We know you already received notification that you were not awarded a Low Income Ticket for Burning Man. We've had some cancellations and were able to reconsider your application, and are happy to be able to now tell you: Congratulations, you’ve been awarded a Low Income Ticket to BurningMan 2012, Fertility 2.0!"

Wow! If I had only known, I wouldn't have gone through all I had to scrape together enough for the STEP ticket I bought (or didn't buy). I responded with a polite decline saying I had already acquired a ticket and to pass it along to the next person in need. I turned down this ticket based on the fact that I already purchased a ticket in my name. Now Burning Man Organization is taking away David's low-income ticket as well, based on the purchase of the exact same ticket I turned mine down for.

So what? "Ha Ha Ha, neiner-neiner-neiner, you fell into our trap and now your screwed!" That is what I hear coming from the ticket department. This whole mess; all the bureaucracy, and red tape, and fine print have made me realize something. The Burning Man Organization ticket department has turned into exactly what Burning Man was created to escape. Mindless automatons, more interested in numbers and rules and statistics than in real people with real concerns. They have, in fact, become the man. When I make it to the playa this year, which I will, and Saturday rolls around and I'm watching him burn, it will have very special significance for me.

Sean Hunt
seanmichaelhunt
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:27 am
Burning Since: 2012
Camp Name: Glamcocks

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby trilobyte » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:06 am

It is a sticky situation, but hardly some cleverly designed trap. It reads more like a comedy of errors, with you and your friend playing the parts of Laurel & Hardy (or insert another comedy team). Looking back, STEP probably should have canceled your order for using someone else's credit card - if you recall, that was a big item during the main sale registration, the name on card and name on order had to match. And looking back, it was a big mistake for your low income applicant friend to use his credit card for a STEP order. It was pretty clear both in the low income details and in the STEP program details that they were only intended for people who could not purchase a ticket through any other means. Unless you had reached out to someone on the ticket team to explain your situation before making those moves, I would have expected nothing less (well, I wouldn't have expected you to get a late low-income offer, that was a surprise).

My advice would be to send an email to Participant Services using the partiserv@burningman.com address, and explain the situation (it would be in your best interest to lose the attitude, you guys made mistakes and need them to try and help you). Include your names, email addresses used for orders/applications, the confirmation numbers, dates, and info about that secondary offer that you declined thinking that you had a ticket through another means. I wish you the best of luck, hopefully they're able to help you out.
User avatar
trilobyte
Site Admin
 
Posts: 10695
Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2004 11:54 pm
Location: San Francisco
Burning Since: 2004
Camp Name: Eridu Society

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby theCryptofishist » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:10 am

trilo
you handled that with a lot more class and clarity than I ever would have.
Thank you
Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
User avatar
theCryptofishist
 
Posts: 37472
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:28 am
Location: In Exile
Burning Since: 2017

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Jackass » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:21 am

trilobyte wrote: It reads more like a comedy of errors, with you and your friend playing the parts of Laurel & Hardy (or insert another comedy team). I wish you the best of luck, hopefully they're able to help you out.

.
Don't worry, it'll get weird...
User avatar
Jackass
 
Posts: 741
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2010 9:25 pm
Location: way out in left field

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Lonesomebri » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:30 am

"Q:I bought my STEP ticket with my friend's credit card and now it's in my friend's name. Can I or my friend have the name changed to mine?
A: No, tickets purchased through STEP are non-transferable, which means no name changes. For your friend to get their money back they will need to sell the ticket back into STEP.

Notice anything funny about this? Yeah, I did too. First of all, there's the past tense wording. "I bought my step ticket…" This already happened. Someone already made this mistake and you're telling them it can't be fixed. If this question is being asked so "frequently" as you put it, don't you think you should have warned people beforehand."

In other words, if this happens so often why don't you warn people like you did in the FAQs, just not that way.....

These facts are presented past-tense but you could have and should have read them before trying to buy tickets with your friend's card. That was the warning, just because it's worded past-tense doesn't make the meaning beyond reason, or that it doesn't apply, or doesn't make sense until you purchase tickets.
"Grow some facial hair it may help with the gender confusion" -tatonka
Your dreams are not mine to share.
User avatar
Lonesomebri
 
Posts: 818
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2012 5:54 pm
Burning Since: 1997
Camp Name: Camp Threat

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby JovReef » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:34 am

Yea ... all of your 'comedy of errors' could have been avoided if you read all the rules. They were all there beforehand.
Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened. - Sir Winston Churchill
User avatar
JovReef
 
Posts: 62
Joined: Wed Jul 11, 2012 4:01 pm
Burning Since: 2011
Camp Name: Coon and Friends

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Dr. Pyro » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:34 am

And it seems to me if they got their money back, look at all the tickets becoming available right now. Why not just buy a couple of those? Nobody screws you but yourself. Artists. Lay off the bong and try to be worthwhile for a change.
User avatar
Dr. Pyro
 
Posts: 3677
Joined: Tue Sep 02, 2003 8:11 am
Location: Newcastle, CA
Burning Since: 1999
Camp Name: Barbie Death Camp & Wine Bistro

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby vargaso » Thu Aug 09, 2012 12:10 pm

WHEN DO BURNING MAN TICKETS GO ON SALE?
User avatar
vargaso
 
Posts: 453
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 11:26 pm
Location: Lincoln, CA
Burning Since: 2007
Camp Name: Suburbanoya

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby seanmichaelhunt » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:12 pm

Trilo. Thanks for your comments. I sent an email to Participant Services as you suggested. Just a few points: A Comedy of Errors is a play by William Shakespeare about the mistaken identities of twins separated at birth. It doesn't really bare any similarity at all to this story. No where in A Comedy of Errors do characters named "Laurel" or "Hardy" appear. Similes don't mix any better than metaphors.
seanmichaelhunt
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:27 am
Burning Since: 2012
Camp Name: Glamcocks

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Savannah » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:22 pm

The term "comedy of errors" has entered modern vernacular, indicating a series of compounding and cumulative mistakes, which you made (and should accept that you made). You didn't simply "Get screwed". You made errors. We all do. It's not the end of the world. Learn to take responsibility; it saves time and makes people more inclined to help you, even if the fault is yours. And good luck.
*** 2013 Survival Guide ***

"I must've lost it when I was twerking at the trash fence." -- BBadger

"Snark away, ePlaya, you magnificent bastards." -- McStrangle
User avatar
Savannah
Moderator
 
Posts: 10525
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 8:33 pm
Burning Since: 2000

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Eric » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:25 pm

seanmichaelhunt wrote:Similes don't mix any better than metaphors.


"Comedy of Errors" in the context used is an idiom, not a simile or a metaphor. In other words, "a ludicrous event or sequence of events" - it's common usage in American English when referring specifically to a situation and not to a play. :roll:
Survival Guide * First Timers Guide * Ticket Info

Regarding Ticket Scalpers and Scammers

It's a camping trip in the desert, not the redemption of the fallen world - Cryptofishist

Eric ShutterSlut
BRC Weekly
User avatar
Eric
Moderator
 
Posts: 7117
Joined: Wed Sep 03, 2003 9:45 pm
Burning Since: 2003
Camp Name: BRC Weekly

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby BBadger » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:26 pm

Third-party-facepalm.jpg
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
"The essence of tyranny is not iron law. It is capricious law." -- Christopher Hitchens

Hate reading my replies? Click here to add me to your plonk (foe) list.
User avatar
BBadger
 
Posts: 3979
Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 11:37 am
Location: (near) Portland, OR, USA
Burning Since: I'm not sure

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Lonesomebri » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:42 pm

seanmichaelhunt wrote:Trilo. Thanks for your comments. I sent an email to Participant Services as you suggested. Just a few points: A Comedy of Errors is a play by William Shakespeare about the mistaken identities of twins separated at birth. It doesn't really bare any similarity at all to this story. No where in A Comedy of Errors do characters named "Laurel" or "Hardy" appear. Similes don't mix any better than metaphors.


.......and yet the ticket purchasing agreement alluded you.......?

If only the Bard would have addressed the matter of how credit cards are issued.
"Grow some facial hair it may help with the gender confusion" -tatonka
Your dreams are not mine to share.
User avatar
Lonesomebri
 
Posts: 818
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2012 5:54 pm
Burning Since: 1997
Camp Name: Camp Threat

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby theCryptofishist » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:49 pm

English major who never took Econ 101...
Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
User avatar
theCryptofishist
 
Posts: 37472
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:28 am
Location: In Exile
Burning Since: 2017

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby VultureChow » Thu Aug 09, 2012 1:53 pm

Eric wrote:
"Comedy of Errors" in the context used is an idiom, not a simile or a metaphor. In other words, "a ludicrous event or sequence of events" - it's common usage in American English when referring specifically to a situation and not to a play. :roll:



Image
I never realized how much we relied on idioms.
Send lawyers, guns and money - The shit has hit the fan.
User avatar
VultureChow
 
Posts: 1448
Joined: Mon Oct 10, 2011 4:08 pm
Burning Since: 2012
Camp Name: Cougar Camp @ Barbie Death Village

UPDATE!

Postby seanmichaelhunt » Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:32 pm

I'm happy to say that the ticket department has completely resolved this issue. If I could take back anything mean I said about them I would. Unfortunately I can't delete this post so this comment will have to do. Thanks to everyone who responded to this post for you thoughtful comments.
seanmichaelhunt
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:27 am
Burning Since: 2012
Camp Name: Glamcocks

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Wrath » Fri Aug 10, 2012 1:11 am

...

...

...just... WOW.
User avatar
Wrath
 
Posts: 103
Joined: Tue Sep 08, 2009 1:37 pm
Location: Tenderloin Heights

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Stephendragonfly » Fri Aug 10, 2012 2:16 am

First screwed and then unscrewed by the inscrutable. Defiantly a comedy of errors.
User avatar
Stephendragonfly
 
Posts: 125
Joined: Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:53 am
Location: A planet that is three quarters covered with water, but we call it Earth.

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Lonesomebri » Fri Aug 10, 2012 8:15 am

Stephendragonfly wrote:First screwed and then unscrewed by the inscrutable. Defiantly a comedy of errors.



Much ado about nothing......
"Grow some facial hair it may help with the gender confusion" -tatonka
Your dreams are not mine to share.
User avatar
Lonesomebri
 
Posts: 818
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2012 5:54 pm
Burning Since: 1997
Camp Name: Camp Threat

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby plantmandan » Fri Aug 10, 2012 8:54 am

Now just make sure you don't forget to bring your tickets with you.
User avatar
plantmandan
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2007 10:42 am
Location: Colorado
Burning Since: 2002

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby theCryptofishist » Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:34 am

Lonesomebri wrote:
Stephendragonfly wrote:First screwed and then unscrewed by the inscrutable. Defiantly a comedy of errors.



Much ado about nothing......

Um, Henry IV Part 1? Hamlet? Much Ado About Nothing? Ceasar and Cleopatra?
Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
User avatar
theCryptofishist
 
Posts: 37472
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:28 am
Location: In Exile
Burning Since: 2017

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby vargaso » Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:47 am

It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury
Signifying nothing.
User avatar
vargaso
 
Posts: 453
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 11:26 pm
Location: Lincoln, CA
Burning Since: 2007
Camp Name: Suburbanoya

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Lonesomebri » Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:00 am

theCryptofishist wrote:
Lonesomebri wrote:
Stephendragonfly wrote:First screwed and then unscrewed by the inscrutable. Defiantly a comedy of errors.



Much ado about nothing......

Um, Henry IV Part 1? Hamlet? Much Ado About Nothing? Ceasar and Cleopatra?


Laurel and Hardy.
"Grow some facial hair it may help with the gender confusion" -tatonka
Your dreams are not mine to share.
User avatar
Lonesomebri
 
Posts: 818
Joined: Wed Jun 13, 2012 5:54 pm
Burning Since: 1997
Camp Name: Camp Threat

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby junglesmacks » Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:25 am

...and this is why all the trolling on the BM FB page about the big bad ticketing department doesn't hold water. Time after time, they prove to be fair and helpful as much as possible even when people completely fuck up. Bravo for the hard work they do and the amount of bullshit they put up with.
Savannah wrote:It sounds freaky & wrong, so you need to do it.
User avatar
junglesmacks
 
Posts: 5809
Joined: Wed May 26, 2010 9:54 pm
Location: Orlando, FL/Kailua, HI
Camp Name: Your mom's tent

Re: UPDATE!

Postby Nipple » Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:30 am

seanmichaelhunt wrote:If we shadows have offended, Think but this, and all is mended: That you have but slumbered here, While these visions did appear


Wait... this whole thread was a dream sequence? I want my money back!


junglesmacks wrote:...and this is why all the trolling on the BM FB page about the big bad ticketing department doesn't hold water. Time after time, they prove to be fair and helpful as much as possible even when people completely fuck up. Bravo for the hard work they do and the amount of bullshit they put up with.


It's often I see conspiracy charges leveled at the Org over prices and this and that, and I have yet to come up with clear and concise motives for any of the "screwing" or "cheating".

"I told myself...one more job, and then I'm out. Now all I need to do is ensure these two tickets are held at Will Call instead of being shipped, and then I'm off to Costa Rica to live the rest of my days!"
User avatar
Nipple
 
Posts: 1116
Joined: Thu Sep 15, 2011 9:36 pm
Location: Portland, OR
Burning Since: 2017

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby junglesmacks » Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:44 am

Or even where any screwing or cheating is happening!!

It's the borgs fault that so many people wanted to buy tickets this year? It's their fault that you were unable to get a ticket and continue the ineptness even now when it's raining tickets left and right? It's just unreal to me the amount of virility that exists this year that is so misdirected at the BMORG.
Savannah wrote:It sounds freaky & wrong, so you need to do it.
User avatar
junglesmacks
 
Posts: 5809
Joined: Wed May 26, 2010 9:54 pm
Location: Orlando, FL/Kailua, HI
Camp Name: Your mom's tent

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby portaplaya » Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:54 am

junglesmacks wrote:It's just unreal to me the amount of virility that exists this year that is so misdirected at the BMORG.



Well, the theme is Fertility 2.0.


Perhaps you meant vitriol, not virility. :wink:
User avatar
portaplaya
 
Posts: 363
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2005 6:49 pm
Location: Seattle area

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby junglesmacks » Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:58 am

portaplaya wrote:
junglesmacks wrote:It's just unreal to me the amount of virility that exists this year that is so misdirected at the BMORG.



Well, the theme is Fertility 2.0.


Perhaps you meant vitriol, not virility. :wink:



Lol.. touché. You're correct. Vitriol.
Savannah wrote:It sounds freaky & wrong, so you need to do it.
User avatar
junglesmacks
 
Posts: 5809
Joined: Wed May 26, 2010 9:54 pm
Location: Orlando, FL/Kailua, HI
Camp Name: Your mom's tent

Re: UPDATE!

Postby Savannah » Fri Aug 10, 2012 11:05 am

seanmichaelhunt wrote:I'm happy to say that the ticket department has completely resolved this issue. If I could take back anything mean I said about them I would. Unfortunately I can't delete this post so this comment will have to do. Thanks to everyone who responded to this post for you thoughtful comments.


Almost everyone on ePlaya has said something they wished they hadn't. And your example might help someone else avoid doing the same thing. The resolution is a hopeful testament to the patience of the Ticket Department, whose work must be pretty challenging.

Heck, I think it also makes you look a bit better, having come back with an improved attitude.

Glad you got all fixed up. See you on the playa. :D
*** 2013 Survival Guide ***

"I must've lost it when I was twerking at the trash fence." -- BBadger

"Snark away, ePlaya, you magnificent bastards." -- McStrangle
User avatar
Savannah
Moderator
 
Posts: 10525
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 8:33 pm
Burning Since: 2000

Re: How we got screwed by the ticket department.

Postby Foxfur » Wed Aug 15, 2012 10:54 pm

I'm enjoying the fuck out of this thread.
Do you see any fuck remaining in this thread? No?
That's because I enjoyed every last bit of fuck right out of it.
He's a mystery wrapped in a riddle, inside an enigma, painted in hot pants. - Savannah
Propane ToysImage
How to do it wrong:
Image
User avatar
Foxfur
 
Posts: 2332
Joined: Sat May 14, 2011 6:43 am
Location: Banks, Oregon
Burning Since: 2011
Camp Name: 404 Village Not Found


Return to 2012 Tickets Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 1 guest