WOA 2009: Ticketing and festival criticisms/Kartenkauf und festivalkritik...

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Hail all! My first post here, so apologies in advance for any newbie mistakes! :cool:
Im kennst das qualität meine Deutsch und auch für besser meine kommentar bei alles forumbenutzer verstehen, ich diese nächricht nür im Englisch schrieben. Tut mir leid fur diese problemme, aber es gibt zu geile und zu lange fur meine kommentar auch im Deutsch zu schrieben! :)

Post synopsis - This über long post in a nutshell:
  • X-Mass Paket tickets for this year were put on sale FAR too early.
  • There should be some form of control in place to ensure that first refusal of X-Mass Pakets is given to those genuine supporters of Wacken who have been going to the festival for a few years or longer.
  • There is no apparent form of control over the number of tickets sold to each individual, which is allowing unfair touting to take place.
  • A limit to the number of tickets bought on each credit card/address should be imposed to thwart touting - I would suggest four.
  • Wacken should really do something about touting, especially the touting apparent on eBay...After all, it's us genuine fans who are losing out. :mad:
  • And whilst I'm at it: What the f*** are Bullet for my VD doing on this years running order?
OK...Now I've been a regular visitor to W:O:A for the last five years running (BAL-SAGOTH playing there in 2004 started it for me! :D) and in previous years - Even in the washout and associated tent-trashings of 2005 - I've enjoyed the festival a great deal, and up until now had made my annual Metal pilGRIMmage every year and seen some f***ing amazing shows.
However, this year I sadly won't be going to Wacken for reasons that I now outline below:... :(
Ticketing - Kartenkauf:
As a regular visitor to Wacken and (Previously) a strong supporter of the festival, I used to be one of the first in the UK to buy his X-Mass Paket as soon as they went on sale - The release of which (Up until last year) was usually held back for a reasonable 2-3 months after the festival to allow people to recover (Both financially and otherwise) from that years Wacken, and to ensure that those who supported the festival - The regular attendees who went year after year no matter what state the running order was in - Had enough time after the festival to save up the cash to buy next years ticket. :)

However...For some strange and f***witted reason, someone made the really "intelligent" decision to put the X-Mass tickets for 2009 on sale the very day after last years festival - A time when I and numerous others were still nursing severe hangovers and recovering before flying back to our own cities/countries. As it was, both myself and a good friend (Both of whom were planning to attend this year) hadn't even managed to leave Hamburg until the following Wednesday...And it was only after speaking to a fellow Metalhead in Cardiff the following weekend I learned that not only had the X-Mass tickets been placed on sale on the Monday, but that they'd already sold out! :mad:

Now...My understanding of the Wacken X-Mass Paket is that it's intended as a gift package (DE: Geschenkpaket) for those devoted Wacken attendees who view the festival as an annual pilgrimage to the Land of Metal, and who are happy to go no matter what bands are/aren't confirmed at that time of the year...Yet it seems to me now that the X-Mass Paket has simply become a touts "golden ticket", and to be honest I feel both angered and betrayed in that no apparent controls whatsoever were placed over the sale of the package to ensure that regulars to the festival were given first refusal over sales before they were released into the wider market! :mad:

So - In a nutshell - What I'd like to know is:
  1. Why on Earth was the X-Mass Paket put on sale so soon after last years festival, when most of us who were there had little or no money left over after all of that drinking and merrymaking?
    Surely the longer standing attendees deserve a month or two afterwards so that they have a fair opportunity to save up for next years ticket?
  2. Why was there no apparent control over ticket sales - Both with regard to the X-Mass Paket, and normal festival tickets - That would ensure there was enough tickets to go around whilst keeping large quantities out of the hands of touts?
    Over the years I have never once seen any form of limit being imposed on the number of tickets I could buy, and in the past MetalTix's shopping cart has allowed me to prepare an order of over 500 X-Mass Pakets without once questioning why I wanted so many tickets! :eek:
    (I didn't progress that order though...Couldn't afford it if nothing else! :p)

    Surely a much more reasonable approach would be to have a maximum limit of four tickets per credit/debit card and billing/delivery address, with larger orders being processed direct through Wacken only...Which would allow normal size groups to buy their tickets in a single order, whilst giving touts the hefty kick in the Hammerfall that they deserve? ;)
  3. As the X-Mass Paket seems (In my view) to be primarily intended for longer standing attendees of the festival, shouldn't there be some form of system in place to give priority in ticket purchase to those who have been attending the festival in previous years before the tickets are made available to the public at large?
    Although I'm aware of the Wacken supporters club (Though I havn't joined as I couldn't even understand the registration form! :eek: ) I don't believe that they get access to tickets any earlier than the rest of us.

    Wacken Supporters Club membership could be one way to ensure that the true fans of Wacken get to available tickets before the touts do...But another approach could be to have people register proof of attendance with Wacken itself - With photos of people at the festival, photos of wristbands and scan-ins of tickets and MetalTix invoices being used as proof of who has attended in previous years. :)
Ticket Touting - Schwarzkauf:
A very brief look at eBay under the tickets/travel section reveals literally hundreds of auctions for W:O:A 2009 tickets - Some of which are being sold in large quantities - And almost all of which are being sold at more than the official price. Although a few of the auctions are for sales of genuinely surplus tickets (I myself bought four for last year, but had to eBay two of them off as two of my friends cancelled) the majority of auctions are being hosted by touts who seek to make a profit off of those who want to go to the festival, and have no personal interest in the festival whatsoever bar making a quick buck. :mad:

Surely Wacken should bring in some form of control to prevent such touting, either by printing attendees names onto each ticket or otherwise having people register for tickets before they are sold (Perhaps also taking a 10% deposit at registration) to ensure that touts are prevented from profiteering off of the festival?
In either case, ticket sales would be much better controlled entirely by Wacken themselves. In the case of tickets bearing the person's name (As was the case for the France '98 World Cup final in Paris) any tickets becoming surplus to requirements could be returned to Wacken by the purchaser for a full refund at cost price, with Wacken then reissuing those tickets to new buyers as soon as they'd been received from the original buyer and a refund sent. :)

Although I have seen the marketplace located elsewhere on this forum where tickets are sold for fair and reasonable prices, the problem that it presents is that one could respond to an advertisement only to find that the ticket(s) had already been sold to another buyer. What Wacken really needs is it's own ticketing system that allows people who have purchased tickets to put any genuinely surplus tickets up for sale - The system only allowing tickets to be traded at cost price, preventing touting and other profiteering. :)

As for the 2009 festival, it could already be too late to revert and reissue tickets already sold...But the decent thing for Wacken to do would be for them to keep a very close eye on eBay and seek action against anyone who is clearly touting with the aim of turning a profit! ;)
Farewell for now, and looking forward to (Hopefully) hearing other Wackeners views on these matters. :cool:
+++ DieselDragon +++
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